Posted on February 22, 2015 by David Anderson

Enterprise Services Planning: Module 3 - Project & Capacity Planning

Enterprise Services Planning is a new modular 5-day training curriculum for managing modern businesses involving lots of knowledge work and creative services. If your organization contains people who must think and make decisions for their living then Enterprise Services Planning is the management training framework that will transform your business. While ideally taken together as 5 days of intensive emersion, ESP training is offered in 4 modules.

Posted on October 28, 2014 by David Anderson

The Tyranny of the Ever Decreasing Timebox

Agile software development methods, with the exception of Feature-Driven Development, adopt the use of fixed time increments, often wrongly called “iterations”. In Scrum, these are known as Sprints. A Sprint is a fixed period of time with a defined scope and a commitment to complete that scope within that time window. Originally, Scrum defined 4 week sprints. This was changed later, circa 2004, to a recommendation for 2 weeks to be the default length for a sprint. In general it is recognized that agility is related to the frequency of interaction with the customers or business owners, and the frequency of deliveries. Hence, smaller timeboxes are more desirable. Software quality is often related to batch size and time to complete work in a non-linear fashion, hence, smaller batches, completed in short periods of time leads to dramatically fewer defects.

As a result of all these advantages, organizations adopting Agile software development methods, have been under pressure to adopt the use of shorter and shorter timeboxes for their sprints or iterations. On the face of it, smaller timeboxes and hence smaller batch sizes for the sprint backlog, are a good thing. However, smaller timeboxes create two types of pressure that are often difficult to cope with and adjust to: firstly, smaller batches require an ever more detailed approach to requirements analysis and development – the need to write every more fine-grained stories which can be completed within the smaller time window; and the need for an ever more accurate approach to estimation, so that a realistic commitment can made.

Posted on September 06, 2014 by David Anderson

Project Management with Kanban Class Curriculum

This is the first look at one of our new role-based training classes. This is specifically targeted at project managers and related roles such as service delivery manager, program manager, and anyone with responsibility for delivering projects, product releases and similar batches of packaged creative or knowledge work. This new curriculum is scoped within the Modern Management Framework and will be available in 2-day class format at the Advanced Practitioner level with the LeanKanban University curriculum structure. Project Management with Kanban classes will be available publicly and privately from October 1st 2014 from David J. Anderson & Associates. From November 1st, and Accredited Advanced Kanban Trainer (AAKT) will be able to offer the class through the LeanKanban University certified training program.

Posted on September 04, 2014 by David Anderson

Project Management with Kanban (Part 4) - Risk Review

This is my final blog post in the series on project management with Kanban. If you haven't seen the previous three posts read them here, Part 1, Part 2, Part 3. This post looks at how project managers can help with risk management and controlling the average lead time and the the lead time distribution. This is important to insure that the forecasts described in Part 3 remain trustworthy and accurate through the duration of the project. The Blocker Clustering technique described in this post was developed by Klaus Leopold and can be used to drive process improvement as well as managing project risk. You can read his original blog post, Blocker Clusters.

Posted on August 08, 2014 by David Anderson

Project Management with Kanban (Part 3) - Forecasting

In part 3 of our look at Project Management with Kanban, we consider project planning using probabilistic forecasting. Kanban originally shocked the Agile community in 2008 as it became known for not using several practices agilists hold dear: no time-boxed iterations; no prioritization; and perhaps most shocking of all, no estimation!!! So how do you plan a project with a method that doesn't use estimates? The answer is that you use historical data or a model of expected capability to build a probabilistic forecast of the project outcome. What follows is a short discussion of one simple and common model for forecasting a project dellivery schedule...

Posted on August 04, 2014 by David Anderson

Project Management with Kanban (Part 2) - Sequencing Policies

In this second in my series of posts exploring project management with Kanban, I'd like to look at how we build a project schedule.

We prefer not to use the term "prioritization" with Kanban because prioritization isn't something done once or periodically leading to a prioritized list, instead prioritization is done dynamically each time an item is pulled through our kanban system. Prioritization isn't an activity in Kanban, it is a consequence of decisions made dynamically based on the risk profile of available work when a pull signal is generated in the kanban system.

Posted on July 31, 2014 by David Anderson

Project Management with Kanban (Part 1)

This fall, we are introducing a new curriculum to our class offerings - Project Management with Kanban. Note the subtle choice of title - "Project Management with Kanban!" It isn't "Kanban for Project Managers." Kanban for Project Managers makes as much sense to me as "Kanban for Refuse Collectors" Why would such a class be different from say, "Kanban for Grandmas"? It's all just Kanban! Perhaps the case studies and examples might be different but the curriculum would be the same. On the other hand, Project Management with Kanban" offers us the chance to provide a new curriculum, specifically targeted at managing project where kanban systems are in use and the Kanban Method is part of the organization's management approach.