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Toyota Kata & PIT: Serious Fun!

October 2, 2023 @ 8:00 am - 4:30 pm

Just like a race car heading into the pit stall, change arrives fast these days. Competitors emerge overnight, new technologies alter the business and labor market conditions are uncertain. How do you ensure continued success in such complex, dynamic and unpredictable conditions?

The default way people think about problems often involves jumping to conclusions and immediately seeking to solve problems, because the brain does not like uncertainty. The unconscious part of our brain takes bits of surface information, quickly extrapolates to fill in blanks and gives us a false sense of confidence in our conclusion. And then we start making costly mistakes.

Imagine how efficient your business would be if it operated like a motorsports pit crew? What if you could learn concepts to improve problem solving through experimental cycles and by making such problem solving techniques a regular habit? What if you found a program that could teach you how to relate the concepts of the pit stop back to your business?

Look at Experimental Problem Solving in a Novel Way

Toyota Kata Overview, taught at the Performance Instruction & Training (PIT) facility deep in NASCAR country, does just that. The program challenges participants to look at problem solving in a way that is entertaining and easy to understand. This is provided through the pit stop experience, a team-based event that is analyzed to evaluate performance, identify learnings and make modifications for continuous improvement.

Pit Crew activities to Drive Home Concepts of Continuous Improvement

Lean + Kata leverages a combination of classroom presentation, discussion and actual pit crew activities to drive home the concepts of continuous improvement, problem solving, efficiency, preparation and teambuilding, while addressing such topics as communication, coaching and feedback, role responsibility and work performance.

What to Expect

You’ll start your day with an orientation to high performance motorsports, followed by an activity where you become a pit crew member. This is followed by the class segment, where we learn that kata is:

  • Developing new habits and allowing people to think differently about problems and goals
  • A way of working, and of working together
  • Using scientific thinking as an ingredient to make teams and organizations more effective and successful
  • Developing a culture of continuous learning and improvement at all levels through deliberate practice

The Improvement Kata helps develop fundamental skills of working like a scientist. The learner iterates or experiments his or her way toward a desired goal instead of deciding the way forward. This way of thinking and working helps people successfully deal with uncertainty and challenges.

The Coaching Kata is a repeating routine by which the teacher or coach gives the learner procedural guidance, not solutions, helping the learner successfully overcome obstacles and develop confidence. With Toyota Kata, managers can develop their own coaching skills and their team members’ problem-solving skills simultaneously.


The lean team from NC State Industry Expansion Solutions facilitates the lean presentations and discussions. Senior level staff of PIT Instruction and Training facilitates the motorsports presentation and activity while professional pit crew members coach the teams.

Benefits of Participating

  • Learn and understand the concept of improvement kata and coaching kata to improve your business.
  • Behave like a pit crew under pressure, apply lean principles and observe your impact on performance.
  • Discover the importance of developing a culture of continuous process improvement in your organization.


$1,195 for the session and volume discounts are available for 2 or 3+ participants from the same company.


Who Should Participate

Whether you are in a leadership position (manager, supervisor, front-line team leader) or a key technical resource (engineer, technician), you are a great fit for kata training. Individuals who seek a unique perspective on problem solving and people involvement are encouraged to register.

Upcoming Session

Monday, October 2, 2023

  • 8 a.m. – Greeting and Orientation
  • 8:30 a.m. – Lean Performance U. Presentation (breakfast provided)
  • 8:50 a.m. – Introduction to Kata
  • 9:15 a.m. – Baseline PIT Stop
  • 9:30 a.m. – Training Session: Improvement Kata and Coaching Kata
  • 12:15 p.m. – Lunch (provided)
  • 1 p.m. – Three PDCA Improvement/Experiment Cycles utilizing the PIT Stop Experience
  • 4 p.m. Debrief training and next steps
  • 4:30 p.m. – Depart PIT

Training Location

Performance Instruction & Training (PIT)
156 Byers Creek Road
Mooresville, NC 28117


Contact Your Regional Manager:


Call Allison Godwin at 252.883.1729


Performance Instruction & Training (PIT)
156 Byers Creek Road
Mooresville, NC 28117
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