I have thought for a long time that Agile and Lean are pursuing similar goals and quite similar in many respects. Although compatible, I now see they have significant differences in focus. (Reader’s Note: this analysis was done in early 2012 but became a forgotten appendix for my book on Agile Culture.
I was reading Freddy Balle’s book The Gold Mine: A Novel of Lean Turnaround and I read something that stopped me dead in my tracks. In the book, after months of transitioning a manufacturing plant to continuous flow using Kanban, the Lean sensei asks the innocent question:
Question: What is better than Kanban?
This post shows the A3 technique and how it is an effective management tool.
The contents of this post are my summary of THE BOOK on this subject: Managing to Learn: Using the A3 Management Process to solve problems, gain agreement, mentor and lead – by John Shook. Available via Lean Enterprise Institute and Ocapt (in Canada).Read More
One of the workshops I run is to help team members understand root cause analysis. I use it with operations teams as well as product development teams. My workshop goal is to have people leave with a basic understanding and some practice. Read More
Cross-training charts (also skill training charts) are a standard part of the Lean toolkit. They are used to identify limited skill sets that can lead to bottlenecks and work stoppage. See manufacturing example.Read More