5Whys is a technique that was formally developed by Taiichi Ohno and was used within the ToyotaMotor Corporation during the evolution of its manufacturing methodologies. The technique is used to find the root cause of a problem or defect by repeating the question why? Each answer forms the basis of the next question. The “5” in the name derives from an observation on the number of iterations needed to resolve the problem.
Points to remember while performing 5Whys
- Write down the problem and make sure that everyone understands it
- Distinguish causes from symptoms.
- Pay attention to the logic of cause-and-effect relationship.
- Always try to know the precise answers.
- Try to complete all the steps and don’t jump to conclusions with assumptions.
- Base our statements on facts and knowledge.
- Assess the process, not people. Never leave “human error” or blame someone as the root cause.
- Foster an atmosphere of trust and sincerity.
- Ask the question “Why” until the root cause is determined, i.e. the cause the elimination of which will prevent the error from occurring again.
- When you form the answer for question “Why” – it should happen from the customer’s point of view.
Example of 5Whys
Statement of purpose : – Mr A wants to run his own business
Question :- Why do you want to do this?
Answer:- This will allow me to have greater control on how I spend his time.
Question :- Why do you want to have greater control on your time?
Answer:- So that I can have more flexibility in my life
Question :- Why do you want to have more flexibility in your life?
Answer:- So that I will be able to do work from home.
Question :- Why do you want to do work from home?
Answer:- So that I can spend more time with my family.
Question :- Why do you want to spend more time with your family?
Answer:-So that I can support my family which is the most important this for me.
So the root causewhy Mr A wants to run his own business is because he wants to supports his family which is the most important thing for him.