Announcing Swip 2.0 — Lean Productivity Made Easy
About 10 months ago two friends of mine were crazy enough to follow me on this journey we are now calling Swip. We started with the mission to make Lean methodology available to the wide public by making it more approachable and easy to start with.
Why the World needs Lean?
Because the Lean method is a really powerful framework that can help teams and individuals bring the best of them. Sadly it is mostly used by big corporations because require well educated and trained Lean coaches and not so affordable software. The Lean Startup movement made a huge breakthrough into the startup world by giving a systematic framework to Lean and help teams iterate fast on their idea to find the fit between customers’ needs and startups’ solution. However, the startup world is only the tip of the iceberg and there are numerous more applications that are yet to be discovered. In order for this to happen Lean has to be widely spread. The world is more chaotic than ever and Lean is one of the few ways to find sanity and order in everything you do.
But what is Lean after all?
Lean is a state of mind, an approach to life and work. Lean is for productivity what minimalism and Zen are for the mind.
The lean philosophy is really comprehensive and has many components to it, however, there are two key „mantras“ that are essential:
- Lean is all about continuous improvement or as in Japanese — Kaizen. It is about making many small incremental improvements that add to the bigger picture.
- Lean is about eliminating waste — „muda“. Waste is everything that is wasteful, useless. The goal of Lean is to get rid of muda and focus on what drives results.
I will dive deeper into the Lean method into upcoming series of posts.
Back to Swip
Our initial idea was to make the Lean methodology really easy to approach by combining it with something that almost everybody uses for personal productivity — the to-do list.
By using the to-do list as a getaway we added a „Lean layer“ to it and incorporated the method, so when people were using the to-do they were actually getting „Lean“. After several months of customer development, we found that is something that people really need, so we started working on our first prototype and what later turned into Swip Beta (live on getswip.com now).
At first, this looked like a suicide mission. Start working on yet another productivity tool and go to market that is extremely crowded. The chances of achieving something looked really dim and failure, almost inevitable. However, the deeper we dig the more we realised how much the world needs Swip.
For three reasons:
1. All tools that leverage the Lean method are built for enterprises, however, the companies that can benefit from Lean the most are Small and Medium Businesses that have very limited set of resources and need to find and focus on the right thing fast.
2. All Lean software are fairly complex and the learning curve is pretty steep. Not to mention that design and UX wise most look like a Microsoft application (sorry Microsoft but your child is ugly). People need something that is easy, straight-forward and works from the start.
3. All Lean tools provide the means to „be Lean“ but doesn’t teach you how to be.
Swip 2.0 — a natural evolution
Thanks to our invaluable Swip community and the numerous feedback they’ve sent us we
came to several epiphanies one of which is the second point from the last paragraph.
People don’t only need „a place to be Lean“, they need something to facilitate the Lean process and assist them in finding and applying potential improvement points. In big organisations these are the Lean coaches, however, startups and small companies can’t afford such, so they have to to be ones themselves and we will provide them with the help they need.
This concept is the pillar stone of what we call Swip 2.0.
What to expect of Swip 2.0
Swip 2.0 will pack many improvements most of which are in the UX realm. However, we will also introduce new designs. Here are the bigger improvement areas:
- Flexible Lean board — by saying „flexible“ we really mean that. With the Lean board, you will be able to learn everything about your project in just a glance. We will not disclose more here and will leave the surprise for yourself. Promise not to spoil it.
- Lean list — this is a whole new concept that we will introduce with Swip 2.0. You will find the list view kind of looks the same but has become Leaner. You will see everything you need to know for your current and upcoming tasks at a sight.
- Task details — task details are now ordered and look better.
- Project grouping — now you will be able to organise your projects in project groups. This functionality has many implications and will help those teams that have many projects to organise them better.
- Better user experience — user experience is extremely important for us and we don’t say it lightly. With Swip 2.0 we introduce many UX improvements and better overall performance.
Haven’t experienced Swip yet?
Sign up at getswip.com to experience Lean productivity Made Easy.
Also, make sure to drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org