What we can learn from Jiro’s philosophy to improve agility

img_1700I am Still in Tokyo, Japan, to give some training classes. I really enjoyed visiting Jiro again and have the omakase tasting menu. The place to be to see customer centricity in practice.

When I left the ten seat Jiro restaurant in Roppingi, I got a little book called ‘JIRO Philosophy’. In this booklet you can find many quotes from the Sushi Master Jiro Ono.

I am now in the middle of a PRINCE2 Agile training class for an organisation at the start of a transformation with focus on agility. Reading this booklet I found several applicable quotes in which continuous improvement is key. I collected and clustered some statements reflecting learning, innovation, and experiment.


  • Just doing what you’re taught is the same as being an apprentice
  • You’ve got to master some skills to reach the next stage
  • There is no job suited to you; you become suited to the job
  • If you continue to do things the right way it’s a given that your sushi will turn out delicious
  • Feeling you can still evolve is important
  • Craftsmen must judge their work to be delicious.


  • There is no limit to innovation
  • Since all sushi toppings are changing, sushi craftsmen must now factor this in When working out flavors.


  • I will experiment for years to obtain a new flavour that completely transcends the ordinary
  • People will teach you new things and ideas. But if you don’t try them out you will not change.

img_1699I would say start experimenting with applying one or more of these quotes and your business agility will improve and whenever you have the chance give Jiro a visit!

2 responses to “What we can learn from Jiro’s philosophy to improve agility

  1. Pingback: Overview of my year 2016 book reviews | Henny Portman's Blog

  2. Pingback: Recensie NR. 5 – 2018 Vakblad Projectmanagement | Henny Portman's Blog

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