Everyday Kanban

Discussing Management, Teams, Agile, Lean, Kanban & more

Month: June 2012 (page 1 of 2)

2pm ET: Free webinar with ‘Toyota Kata’ author

A free webinar plus Q&A with Mike Rother, researcher, lean thought leader, author of Toyota Kata, co-author of the workbooks Learning to See and Creating Continuous Flow, — all winners of Shingo Research Awards

Go here to register

Also, check out this site, http://www.lean.org/kata/, which is self-described as “a community laboratory for deliberate practice, where we align to master the fine points of coaching continuous improvement. The purpose is to share ideas and experiences from daily use of the Improvement Kata and Coaching Kata.” It sounds like a great place to meet others in the lean frame of mind. I’ll definitely be going there asap!

Understanding your capacity balance sheet

Most of us know the importance of sticking to a budget. In order to do that, you need to understand what money is coming in and what money is going out. You need to make sure that you aren’t committing to more than you can spend or you can end up in serious financial trouble. Astute businesspeople also know that financial acumen is key to making a business successful and keeping it that way.

I find myself constantly surprised that this same concept doesn’t always get applied to a development team’s capacity for work – either by the client or the dev management. The same skills that allow people to be successful at their budgeting and account balancing, both personally and professionally, can and should be applied directly to the capacity handling of development teams.

It all boils down to living within your means. It is important for individuals and companies alike. If you are a people manager, and want to be respected by your employees, you must understand your capacity balance sheet.

Continue reading

Plans are useless, planning indispensable

I tell this story to illustrate the truth of the statement I heard long ago in the Army: Plans are worthless, but planning is everything. There is a very great distinction because when you are planning for an emergency you must start with this one thing: the very definition of “emergency” is that it is unexpected, therefore it is not going to happen the way you are planning.
Dwight D. Eisenhower

Variability is a fact of life in just about every facet of life, development and business not withstanding. A plan, in and of itself, is a static thing. Your plan will be 100% effective if you anticipate everything correctly and all of your assumptions prove true. However, cognitive biases get in our way most of the time. Continue reading

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