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January 02, 2007

Elegant Solutions: Breakthrough Thinking the Toyota Way

Elegant Solution.jpg

Matthew E. May is the author of The Elegant Solution: Toyota’s Formula for Mastering Innovation. He has held a key advisory role with the University of Toyota for over eight years, and he is a graduate of the Wharton School and Johns Hopkins University.

You can download a copy of his ChangeThis manifesto by clicking here. In it, he explains—in a truly “inside-the-kimono ” way—the basic lessons of Toyota’s success and how the company creates innovative and elegant solutions. If you like Toyota’s products, you’ll love Matt’s work.

ChangeThis, by the way, has a ton of great stuff. Click here to see what I mean. My Art of the Start manifesto is here.


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Download a copy of this ChangeThis manifesto and learn the basic lessons of Toyota’s success and how they create innovative and elegant solutions. [Read More]

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The Elegant Solution: Breakthrough Thinking the Toyota Way (pdf) by Matthew May: One Million. That’s how many ideas Toyota implements each year. Do the math: 3000 ideas a day. That number, more than anything else, explains why Toyota appears to be i... [Read More]


Hi! I too want will share the reasons in occasion of Toyota car.
The first car was toyota corolla, volume of the engine 1.5, good car, but very weak engine.
Car economy class. Car toyota camry, volume of the engine of 2.0 litres. Excellent car,
but it would be desirable even more powerfully! Now I go on car toyota Surf, the engine diesel!
That is necessary for me! 1KZ! COOL!

They lieing if they say patents protect inventions you better look at the market place better ! let me tell you the way to protect your idea if you had a patent because a patent alone dont do it! document that idea first or put a stamp on it keep dated records and remember one thing the court decide if they stole you idea not companies or attorneys or agents and if you dont have big money your out of the game if you patent is out of date or dont have a documented date you can be patenting somone els idea a search cant tell you everything every inventor dont patent ideas like you think dont patent nothing yourself ! have a companie to do so thats wittness to your patent thats the protection if you patent pend your idea you better have a investor first it run out fast you got one year and then you might cant get a real patent you better learn before you leap listing to companies and attorneys and agents most dont know what i know ! and most of all check out the companies your find out they dont know nothing about patents and the GOV-dont protect ideas the GOVE-sign contracts first and test the ideas !.

An exciting read (I just fwd'd it to the Sr management team of the company I am part of). Not a very good example of the 10/20/30 rule I guess, though :)
Thanks, Guy, for bringing my attention to this,

Guy - sometimes we just travel in exactly the same circles! I too stumbled on Matt's ChangeThis manifesto (and yes, all of those manifestos are great stuff!), and then tracked him down through LinkedIn to do a podcast interview.

While editing is not yet complete on the podcast, for anyone who liked the Manifesto, or who has read the book, I think you'll enjoy the podcast we've done, and if you were impressed by Toyota/Lexus/Scion before reading any of Matt's work or listening to our podcast, you ain't seen (or heard) nothin' yet!

Keep your collective eyes peeled at my blog - http://delphigroup.blogs.com/dan_keldsen/ (you can sign up for e-mail notifications via FeedBlitz on the right sidebar - as with Guy's blog).

I anticipate posting that interview with Matthew E. May in the next 2 weeks - and for people interested in innovation topics (who isn't), I have two currently posted podcasts with Stephen Shapiro of 24/7 Innovation fame, and with Andre de Zanger of the Creativity Institute in NYC. Both interviews were great fun for me, and I've gotten great private feedback from my clients and colleagues on the content (my blog reading and listening crowd tends to be a private conversation bunch - they clearly haven't heard the siren call of * 2.0 yet!).


This is a great book. I got lot of marketing ideas.

I've been driving a Toyota Scion for years, and I am in complete support of Toyota's elegant solutions. This is wonderful reading; I think I'll print it and put it in my glove compartment for the next time someone asks why I drive such a boxy car. :)


Toyota's success is NOT mainly due to the fact that the big American autos made terrible collective bargaining agreements. Toyota makes a great product; much better ones currently available than say GM.

Unions have been broken before (e.g. Cat). You can't blame the workers for the problems. It's the lackadaisical management to focus on markething (promotion/image) and not the product itself. They've positioned their cars as commodities and ones that don't necessarily command a premium, because of their poor quality and high maintenance costs.

Toyota is a great company for sure, but their success today probably has more to do with the terrible collective bargaining agreements made with the UAW by GM/Ford/Chrysler/etc in the 60's and 70's than anything else.

$1,500 of every GM vehicle sold goes towards employee health care -- more than the value of the steel in the car! Toyota doesn't have a unionized workforce and retiree community with such generous benefits.

This is fantastic actually. I love the section that explains "The most compelling solutions are often perceptual and emotional."


"If you like Toyota’s products, you’ll love Matt’s work."

Well, even if you don't like Toyota's products, yet have an unexplainable respect for the company, yes, you'll love Matt's work!

The ChangeThis manifesto is a fantastic place to start before diving fully into all that is Toyota. Awesome post Guy! Thank you!

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