Sourced through LEI
“Dear Gemba coach,
Does respect for humanity mean the same as respect for people? I hear that the literal translation of the Japanese phrase “respect for people” is really respect for “humanness” – whatever that means?
I honestly don’t know, but it’s a very interesting point. I don’t know a word of Japanese,…”
“…but Jon Miller, who does, makes a similar point here: he says the original Toyota phrase really means ‘holding precious what it is to be human.'”
My comments: Yes, Jon Miller grew up in Japan, speaks Japanese like a native, and has done a great job translating Taiichi Ohno’s Workplace Management. With only four years of immersion in Japan, I am not at his level, but I know the language well enough to read the manufacturing literature and tell the difference between respect for people and respect for humanity in the TPS sense. Here are a few posts on this subject: