What foundational Agile/Lean concepts must I be a zealot about?

Jason Yip
Jason Yip
Sep 30 · 1 min read

Art Byrne wrote at The Lean Post about What Foundational Items Must I Be a Zealot About?

“ In my opinion there are several foundational areas that you must focus on to make the lean fundamentals work. In my experience these foundational areas are often overlooked and as a result the lean turnaround is slow to develop or doesn’t happen at all. To me, three of them stand out as being worthy of further discussion.”

The three foundational areas Art suggested are:

  1. Setup reduction;
  2. 5S;
  3. Visual control

To clarify how this might apply to Agile/Lean software product development, let me share what I think is the underlying principle for each of Art’s areas:

Setup reduction is about reducing transaction cost to allow for reducing batch size. The software development version of this is reducing release transaction costs to allow for smaller releases. The manufacturing ideal version of this is one-piece flow. The software development ideal version of this is continuous delivery.

5S is about having standards to make problems visible AND continuously improving those standards. The software product development version includes:

  • coding and design standards AND refactoring and evolutionary design;
  • Design Systems (UX) AND evolutionary interaction design;
  • “how we work” standards AND retrospectives.

Visual control is about designing your workspace to make problems easily detectable. The software product development version are information radiators such as physical kanban boards, operational dashboards on large displays, build lights, etc.

Jason Yip

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Jason Yip

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