5S : a workplace case study
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[ACCESS RESTRICTED TO THE UNIVERSITY OF MISSOURI AT REQUEST OF AUTHOR.] Many businesses struggle with sustaining the improvements made using 5S methods. Few studies are designed to generate concepts and theory about the influencers of outcomes. In the constructivist-interpretive tradition, this study sought to understand and explain factors that shaped 5S outcomes by generating data and analysis from shared experiences and relationships with participants and other sources of data (Charmaz, 2006). This research focused on reasons why 5S was done, how it went from idea to reality and the influencers of sustainment behavior. It employed grounded theory methods to generate potentially useful conceptualizations of the phenomenon. Data sources included interviews with current and former employees, archival materials as well as observations of the workplace. The main findings of this research were that management practices and reward systems constrain organizational capacity for reflexivity and learning that might improve the 5S process. This situation contributed to the persistent cycle of the execution of a faulty 5S process that created only superficial workplace improvements that workers rejected.
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