Coaching Kata

Coaching Kata

A Kata is a structured routine that makes skills and mindset teachable. Coaching Kata is a set of teaching routines that helps you develop coaching skill. It is a coaching pattern that helps managers teach Improvement Kata thinking and acting.

2 types of Kata in Lean

1. Improvement Kata
2. Coaching Kata

Improvement kata is a four step routine that you practice daily in order to make striving and scientific working a habit while Coaching kata is vital to the process of embedding kata into an organizations culture. In order to apply either of the Kata, the learner should be provided coaching that details each of the patterns and provides feedback as necessary. The coaching kata can help an organization realize the possibilities inherent in other kata. Once you learn the Improvement Kata, the Coaching Kata develops your skill for teaching the systematic, scientific routine of the Improvement Kata through practice in daily work.

Coaching Kata Guidelines

  • The daily step taken towards the target condition are taken from the PDCA cycles & not from the list of Action Plan
  • In a PDCA cycle,  what we learn in one cycle often leads to another cycle
  • Meet at the focus process everyday
  • The PDCA record sheet is filled in by the mentee
  • Mentor asks the Five questions
  • Reflect on the last step

See – Compare – Instruct Pattern

1. See    

Try to understand how the learner is thinking

(Coach is in observing, questioning, listening mode)

2. compare

Compare this to the desired pattern specified by the  Improvement kata

(Coach is in judging mode)

3. Instruct  

Introduce a course adjustment, if required

(Coach is in instructing or guiding mode)


  • Why do we do this experiment?
  • Its not – “Lets see if this target condition will work”
  • Its about – “What we need to do to make it work”
  • Focus on seeing what does not go as planned
  • So we can learn, what we need to work on

Source –  Mike Rother and his book Toyota Kata

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