The Effects of Toyota Production System Training Discontinuation

Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Educational Leadership, Research and Technology

First Advisor

Dr. Van E. Cooley

Second Advisor

Dr. Mitch Keil

Third Advisor

Dr. Dennis McCrumb


The purpose of the study is to determine what impact the discontinuation of the Toyota Production System (TPS) training model may have on the Saint Joseph, Michigan, Robert Bosch Automotive Braking plant and its employees, and to determine what other continuous improvement programs may be dissolved. The focus of this investigation is on professional development, specifically the impact of Toyota Production System training elimination and other continuous improvement training discontinuation, along with initiative embracement as it relates to employees. This research consists of 12 employee interviews. The research utilizes qualitative inquiry methodology focusing on the grounded theory approach. All employees were chosen from salaried positions and represent a cross section of the departments where Toyota Production System utilization is evident. The coding process yielded the surfacing of official and emerging themes. Official themes constitute 67% participant collaboration and emerging theme is established when at least 50% or 6 of 12 participants answer questions with comparable information. Six official themes have been extrapolated. The official themes include: (1a) participants agreed that the TPS process implementation improved several areas of the facility; (1b) improvement remarks were central to the participants' area of responsibility; (2a) TPS training discontinuation could allow people to go back their old way of doing things; (2b) reduced employee involvement and moral could be the common thread of TPS training elimination; (3a) of the alternate continuous improvement initiatives under way, cost avoidance is the key factor; and (3b) few participants concluded that there would be any additional continuous improvement training programs that would be in jeopardy of being eliminated.

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