Meet the LeanKit Team

The Motivation

Project management tools suck. Can we get an amen? (Yeah, we thought so.) Spreadsheets, the number-one tool used to manage projects, haven’t changed much since VisiCalc introduced them in 1979. The workplace has evolved dramatically, but project management tools haven’t kept up with today’s needs.

Status updates are difficult to manage, and teams spend hours in status meetings only to emerge with guesstimates of how much effort a project will take. Meanwhile, management struggles to know who’s doing what work and when. Our founders wanted to find a better way.

Before LeanKit, our founders spent several, aggravating years on the hamster wheel of corporate IT. The standard method of team collaboration required archaic tools such as physical whiteboards fed by list-based project management systems (and of course, the ubiquitous spreadsheet). Roadblocks popped up almost daily, consuming valuable time and delaying deliverables.

Drawing from the principles of Lean, Agile and Kanban, our founders built LeanKit to revolutionize the way work is managed. As a result, we have witnessed the emergence of a more collaborative, proactive and successful workplace. We are excited to be on the forefront of helping people focus on the work that makes them happy.

Dedicated to busting the myth that people are the reason projects fail, our founders created visual management and forecasting software designed to optimize individual and team effectiveness. Using a humanistic, rather than mechanistic, approach to productivity, LeanKit wants to help pave the way for the future of work by creating a visual tool that reinvents the way teams get stuff done.

The Founders

Chris Hefley

Chris Hefley CEO

Chris is a practitioner and thought leader in the global Lean/Kanban community. In 2011, he was nominated for the Lean Systems Society’s Brickell Key Award. After years of coping with “broken” project management systems in the world of software development, Chris helped build LeanKit as a way for teams to become more effective. Prior to LeanKit, Chris worked with globally distributed teams in leadership positions at HCA Healthcare and IMI Health. He believes in building software and systems that make people’s lives better and transform their relationship with work.

Jon Terry

Jon Terry COO

Jon has been a leader in Agile transformations for some of the largest healthcare organizations in the U.S., including hospital-giant HCA Healthcare and its subsidiary, HealthTrust Purchasing Group. Jon earned his Global Executive MBA from Georgetown University and ESADE Business School in Barcelona, Spain. Pulling from a wide range of experience, Jon has emerged as a leader and highly sought-after presenter within the Lean and Agile community around the world. Jon not only helps LeanKit customers discover how to increase effectiveness using the LeanKit tool, he also actively seeks to raise awareness of the benefits of Kanban and visual project management.

Stephen Franklin

Stephen Franklin CTO

Stephen earned his stripes in Lean/Kanban while leading development teams as a Domain Architect at Healthtrust Purchasing Group and Chief Software Architect at eDoc4u. After earning degrees in Building Science and Information Systems from Auburn University, Stephen has spent his career leading many successful projects with international and outsourced development teams. Stephen shares the vision for "the future of work" and leads both the product development and IT organizations at LeanKit.

Daniel Norton

Daniel Norton CMoO

Daniel is a leader and influencer in the Southeast regional technology community. He has advised Microsoft on iOS technology and regularly speaks at mobile technology conferences. Daniel was a consulting application engineer at HealthTrust Purchasing Group and a software development consultant in Atlanta, Chicago and Kansas City before helping to build LeanKit. Daniel graduated from Lipscomb University with a Bachelor of Arts in Business Management.

The Fun

The Press

For media inquiries, please click here.

The "Sticky Note" Approach to LeanKit's Lean-Agile Project Management Software Listen to the interview »

LeanKit’s Features Enabled in Microsoft Visual Studio Online Download the press release as PDF »

Len Safford Named as Finalist in Nashville Business Journal’s CFO Awards Download the press release as PDF »

CTO Stephen Franklin Wins CIO Award from Nashville Journal Download the press release as PDF »

LeanKit Hires Tim Mulron as Chief Revenue Officer Download the press release as PDF »

LeanKit Named as Finalist for Nashville Technology Awards Download the press release as PDF »

LeanKit to Sponsor the 2013 Lean Startup Conference Download the press release as PDF »

LeanKit Wins 2013 NEXT Award for Technology Growth Download the press release as PDF »

CIO: 7 Hot Tools for Agile Development View the slideshow »

InfoWorld: Developer picks: 7 hot tools for agile development View the slideshow »

CEO Chris Hefley Named "Entrepreneur to Watch" by Nashville Lifestyles Download the press release as PDF »

LeanKit Named "Cool Vendor" in Leading Analyst Firm Report Download the press release as PDF »

LeanKit Taps Industry Financial Veteran Leonard Safford as CFO Download the press release as PDF »

LeanKit Announces New Chief Marketing Officer Download the press release as PDF »

LeanKit Announces Integration Partnership with Focused Objective Download the press release as PDF »

The Tweets