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  • [Harley Davidson "M.A.N. Program" Booklets].

[Harley Davidson "M.A.N. Program" Booklets].

250.00
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[Harley Davidson "M.A.N. Program" Booklets].

250.00

An assembly of four corporate publications, training manuals produced and distributed internally by the Harley Davidson Motor Co. in about 1984, focusing on the implementation of its M.A.N. Program (Material-as-Needed), an in-house branding term for what was ostensibly the Japanese "Just in Time" (or JIT) manufacturing system, an inventory, supply, and manufacturing "philosophy" (as the text calls it) which aimed to streamline processes throughout the Company's chain of supply and manufacturing. The system, (often referred to as the Toyota Production System (TPS) or simply "lean manufacturing"), has its origins in post-War Japan and has become widely adopted globally as a means to streamline and improve efficiency throughout supply chains and manufacturing processes.

The booklets are replete with illustrated diagrams, hands-on examples of Program application within an existing framework, worksheet examples for employees, etc… and much of the material appears to be aimed at the Company's suppliers, selling them on the system as a means to improve their business with HD via long-term agreements, reduced inventories, higher profits, etc...

Harley-Davidson struggled mightily throughout the 1970’s and was purchased from its parent company AMF by a pair of private investors who undertook a massive corporate reorganization in about 1981 (with this MAN Program being of the most significant changes made). The company claimed unfair competition from imported Japanese motorcycles was destroying its business, prompting President Reagan to implement a 45% tariff on bikes imported from Japan in 1983. Japanese motorcycles had faced an uphill climb in finding acceptance with a xenophobic, post-War America public, though their superior reliability, performance, price points, etc... when compared to historically unreliable and expensive American bikes like Harley, had found a strong foothold in the market by the 1980’s. 

That Harley-Davidson, a firm whose marketing strategy is and had been traditionally and deeply rooted in an American jingoism, would be pulled from the brink of bankruptcy by adopting a Japanese system of operation while at the same time vilifying and politically damaging companies of the same, is, well, ironic to say the least. 

A relevant assembly of internal publications from a heralded era of reconstruction within an iconic American company (Harley-Davidson is now a profitable, approximately $7 billion publicly traded company at the writing of this description). And a rich document on Asian and American relations in business and trade amid the current political climate over trade and tariff disputes. From the estate of a retired Harley project engineer with his business card tipped onto the interior of one. Each volume unrecorded in OCLC and with no examples located by us in commerce or private collections.  

[Motorcycles] : [Business] : [Japan]. [Harley Davidson "M.A.N. Program" Booklets]. [Milwaukee, Wisconsin]: [Harley Davidson Motor Co.], [ca. 1984]. 4tos. 4 uniform volumes. Each plastic comb bound in printed card wraps. Mechanically reproduced text (likely Xeroxed) to rectos only of 24, 40, 76, and 45 leaves respectively. Booklet titles: M.A.N. PROGRAM ; M.A.N. PROGRAM: Partners in Profit ; M.A.N. PROGRAM: Set-Up Reduction; STATISTICAL OPERATOR CONTROL. Some tiny corner creasing about wraps, else bright, clean. About near fine copies.

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An assembly of four corporate publications, training manuals produced and distributed internally by the Harley Davidson Motor Co. in about 1984, focusing on the implementation of its M.A.N. Program (Material-as-Needed), an in-house branding term for what was ostensibly the Japanese "Just in Time" (or JIT) manufacturing system, an inventory, supply, and manufacturing "philosophy" (as the text calls it) which aimed to streamline processes throughout the Company's chain of supply and manufacturing. The system, (often referred to as the Toyota Production System (TPS) or simply "lean manufacturing"), has its origins in post-War Japan and has become widely adopted globally as a means to streamline and improve efficiency throughout supply chains and manufacturing processes.

The booklets are replete with illustrated diagrams, hands-on examples of Program application within an existing framework, worksheet examples for employees, etc… and much of the material appears to be aimed at the Company's suppliers, selling them on the system as a means to improve their business with HD via long-term agreements, reduced inventories, higher profits, etc...

Harley-Davidson struggled mightily throughout the 1970’s and was purchased from its parent company AMF by a pair of private investors who undertook a massive corporate reorganization in about 1981 (with this MAN Program being of the most significant changes made). The company claimed unfair competition from imported Japanese motorcycles was destroying its business, prompting President Reagan to implement a 45% tariff on bikes imported from Japan in 1983. Japanese motorcycles had faced an uphill climb in finding acceptance with a xenophobic, post-War America public, though their superior reliability, performance, price points, etc... when compared to historically unreliable and expensive American bikes like Harley, had found a strong foothold in the market by the 1980’s. 

That Harley-Davidson, a firm whose marketing strategy is and had been traditionally and deeply rooted in an American jingoism, would be pulled from the brink of bankruptcy by adopting a Japanese system of operation while at the same time vilifying and politically damaging companies of the same, is, well, ironic to say the least. 

A relevant assembly of internal publications from a heralded era of reconstruction within an iconic American company (Harley-Davidson is now a profitable, approximately $7 billion publicly traded company at the writing of this description). And a rich document on Asian and American relations in business and trade amid the current political climate over trade and tariff disputes. From the estate of a retired Harley project engineer with his business card tipped onto the interior of one. Each volume unrecorded in OCLC and with no examples located by us in commerce or private collections.  

[Motorcycles] : [Business] : [Japan]. [Harley Davidson "M.A.N. Program" Booklets]. [Milwaukee, Wisconsin]: [Harley Davidson Motor Co.], [ca. 1984]. 4tos. 4 uniform volumes. Each plastic comb bound in printed card wraps. Mechanically reproduced text (likely Xeroxed) to rectos only of 24, 40, 76, and 45 leaves respectively. Booklet titles: M.A.N. PROGRAM ; M.A.N. PROGRAM: Partners in Profit ; M.A.N. PROGRAM: Set-Up Reduction; STATISTICAL OPERATOR CONTROL. Some tiny corner creasing about wraps, else bright, clean. About near fine copies.