Management And Accounting Web

Yoshida, K. 1989. Deming management philosophy: Does it work in the US as well as in Japan? Columbia Journal of World Business (Fall): 10-17.

Summary by James R. Martin, Ph.D., CMA
Professor Emeritus, University of South Florida

Framework Main Page | Japanese Management Main Page

Yoshida compares the American and Japanese approaches to management including the value system of workers, approach and attitudes in the area of quality control, timing of performance review, human resource replacement policy, and level of autonomy and responsibility. These approaches are summarized in the table below.

Comparison of the American Analytic versus the Japanese Holistic Approaches
Characteristic American Japanese
Value system
of workers
Diverse value systems of workers creates the need for detailed job descriptions and a multitude of job classifications. Since workers are not cross trained and tend not to share and help each other, job descriptions must be fairly precise. (This seems to require the bureaucratic form of control) Unified common values creates little need for detailed job descriptions. Workers are multi-skilled and help each other, thus few job classifications are needed. For example, in a joint venture of GM and Toyota, (NUMMI) Toyota reduced GM's 100 job classifications to 1. (Consistent with the clan form of control)
Approach and attitudes in the area of quality control Achieve an acceptable level within specifications. Achieve the most desirable level of perfection.
Timing of performance review Short run quarterly or annual. (Bureaucratic form) Long run, e.g., every five years. (Clan form)
Human resource replacement policy Workers are viewed as replaceable parts. Thus, replace (hire and fire) separable workers as needed. Workers are viewed as part of an organic entity. In an economic downturn, retrain and relocate workers within the company. Release and replace workers only as a last resort.
Level of autonomy and responsibility A focus on the parts requires high levels of autonomy, sectionalism, competition and assumed independence in the areas of responsibility and performance. Optimizing the parts will optimize the whole. A focus on the whole requires low levels of autonomy, with high levels of cooperation, consensus decisions, collective responsibility and recognition of interdependence among the parts. Because of synergy, optimizing the parts will not optimize the whole.


Related summaries:

Chow, C. W., Y. Kato and K. A. Merchant. 1996. The use of organizational controls and their effects on data manipulation and management myopia: A Japan vs. U.S. comparison. Accounting, Organizations and Society 21(2-3): 175-192. (Summary).

Cooper, R. and C. A. Raiborn. 1995. Finding the missing pieces in Japanese cost management systems. Advances in Management Accounting (4): 87-102. (Summary).

Crawford, R. J. 1998. Reinterpreting the Japanese economic miracle. Harvard Business Review (January-February): 179-184. (Summary).

Dillon, L. 1990. Can Japanese methods be applied in the western workplace? Quality Progress (October): 27-30. (Summary).

Hayes, R. H. 1981. Why Japanese Factories Work, Harvard Business Review (July-August): 57- 66. (Summary).

Hiromoto, T. 1988. Another hidden edge: Japanese management accounting. Harvard Business Review (July-August): 22-25. (Summary).

Howell, R. and M. Sakurai. 1992. Management Accounting (and other) Lessons from the Japanese. Management Accounting (December): 28-34. (Summary).

Imai, M. 1986. Kaizen: The Key To Japan's Competitive Success. New York: McGraw-Hill Publishing Company. (Summary).

Ittner, C. D. and D. F. Larcker. 1997. Quality strategy, strategic control systems, and organizational performance. Accounting, Organizations and Society 22(3-4): 293-314. (Includes results for firms in the U.S., Canada, Germany, and Japan). (Note).

Martin, J. R. Not dated. What is the red bead experiment? Management And Accounting Web.

Martin, J. R., W. K. Schelb, R. C. Snyder, and J. C. Sparling. 1992. Comparing the practices of U.S. and Japanese companies: The implications for management accounting. Journal of Cost Management (Spring): 6-14. (Summary).

Monden, Y. and J. Y. Lee. 1993. How a Japanese auto maker reduces costs. Management Accounting (August): 22-26. (Summary).

Ouchi, W. G. 1979. A Conceptual Framework for the Design of Organizational Control Mechanisms. Management Science (September): 833-848. (Summary).

Ouchi, W. G. and A.M. Jaeger. 1978. Type Z organization: stability in the midst of mobility. Academy of Management Review (April): 305-314. (Summary).

Porter, M. E., M. Sakakibara and H. Takeuchi. 2000. Can Japan Compete? (Perseus). (Summary).

Sakurai, M. 1989. Target costing and how to use it. Journal of Cost Management (Summer): 39-50. (Summary).

Sakurai, M. 1995. Past and future of Japanese management accounting. Journal of Cost Management (Fall): 21-30. (Summary).

Spear, S. and H. K. Bowen. 1999. Decoding the DNA of the Toyota production system. Harvard Business Review (September-October): 97-106. (Summary).

Takeuchi, H. 1981. Productivity: Learning from the Japanese. California Management Review (Summer): 5-18. (Summary).

Tanaka, T. 1993. Target costing at Toyota. Journal of Cost Management (Spring): 4-11. (Summary).

Tanaka, T. 1994. Kaizen budgeting: Toyota's cost-control system under TQC. Journal of Cost Management (Fall): 56-62. (Summary).

Wheelwright, S.C. 1981. Japan - Where operations really are strategic. Harvard Business Review (July-August): 67-74. (Summary).