Five Whys is a method of problem solving that explores the underlying cause-and-effect of a particular problem by asking “why” multiple times. The response to each question forms the basis of the next question. Though five “whys” are stated in the name, fewer or more iterations may be needed to solve the problem, depending on its complexity.

The Five Whys method was developed by Sakichi Toyoda, founder of Toyota Industries, and has become an integral part of lean manufacturing.

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