Most people familiar with Kanban know its power at the team level; Kanban boards help teams visualize, manage, and improve their workflows, while collecting invaluable data that enables continuous improvement. For managers, team Kanban boards provide valuable insight into status, capacity, issues blocking progress, and more. This insight enables managers to be more effective leaders, and helps them add more value to their teams.
What many may not realize is that Kanban possesses equally transformative power at the portfolio level. A well-designed portfolio of Kanban boards, connected in strategic ways, can equip stakeholders at every level of the organization with the insight they need to deliver on key initiatives. Using Kanban can help organizations synchronize efforts at every level to keep everyone focused on maximizing customer value. LeanKit is purpose-built for Lean project portfolio management.
Read on to learn how to use LeanKit boards at the team, project, and portfolio levels to give everyone the insight they need.
Enjoy this excerpt from the Lean Business Report. Download the full report here.
Part of the beauty of applying Lean to knowledge work is its versatility. Teams in every department — from Software Development to Organizational Development, IT Operations to Marketing Operations — practice Lean in their daily work.
The workflows, organizational structures, work types, and associated challenges for each of these teams play out in diverse ways. Lean has universal applications, but it’s not universally applied in the same way. There are, however, some overarching trends: Flow is top priority, Kanban is king, and WIP (work in process) is the most common metric.
What do you do when urgent work constantly interrupts planned project work? Time after time, you put down the project work so you can put out the fire. But then what happens to the prioritized work? It gets delayed. With the unpredictable nature of IT Operations work, it can feel impossible to hit deadlines for prioritized work — which creates mountains of technical debt that add even more pressure. This creates an environment that is bad for morale and ultimately, unsustainable for keeping talented employees.
To balance prioritized and unplanned work, IT Operations needs a way to visually manage everything in one place — to keep the entire team aligned while keeping work moving at a controlled, sustainable pace. Kanban helps IT Operations teams do exactly this. Read on to learn how IT Operations teams can use Kanban to improve predictability, helping them meet and exceed deadlines for important, prioritized work.
As a project manager, you probably spend a lot of your time trying to get a clear picture of the current status of your projects. Between spreadsheets, email, and meetings, you’re constantly deciphering and relaying back information to various stakeholders and team members. Kanban project management is a highly visual method that gives project managers the visibility you need to deliver work on time, on budget, and on value.
When practicing continuous improvement, the only constant is change. For teams that have achieved moderate, predictable success by following the status quo, embracing this change can require a major paradigm shift. Resistance to change can come in the form of foot-dragging, sabotage, and even rebellion, and can have a toxic influence on your Lean implementation.
As a leader, it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to make everyone on your team completely comfortable with change. You’ll first have to identify the causes of their resistance, and find ways to move through them.
From there, you can do your part to minimize discomfort by giving your team opportunities to gain the autonomy, mastery, and purpose they need to stay motivated. Keep reading to learn why people resist change and how to motivate teams to embrace continuous improvement.
Officially coined in 2009, the term “DevOps” has become a business buzzword in recent years. But what is it exactly? DevOps describes a cultural movement in IT focused on collaboration and innovation through systems thinking. The term is often incorrectly used to describe a development methodology or a new type of team. Luckily, there are many excellent resources on DevOps that can help to clear some of the “cloudiness” around the movement and its ideals. We recommend these five DevOps books to anyone looking to deepen their understanding of DevOps.
Enjoy this excerpt from the latest Lean Business Report. Download the full report here.
The new Lean empowers teams, encourages effective leadership, and enables organizations to deliver value to their customers faster.
Startups and enterprises are equally likely to be Lean, but for different reasons: startups for the speed to grow quickly, enterprises for the agility to remain relevant and competitive.
Lean maintains a strong hold in manufacturing, its original industry. But it’s also finding new applications in IT, helping global organizations reduce and manage complexity in an increasingly complex world.
In tightly structured, highly regulated industries, where the cost of error is high — like financial services, healthcare and telecommunications — Lean helps teams and organizations systematically identify and eliminate inefficiencies. We’re also seeing Lean grow in more creative industries, like media, entertainment, and retail.
The future of business is unfolding before us, with the new Lean pioneers leading the charge. Read this post to learn who’s practicing the new Lean, and how they got started.