The Kanban Maturity Model describes seven organizational maturity levels. Each maturity level is a collection of culture, practices, and business outcome characteristics.
Managed Evolution is woven into the KMM. It is about defining the approach that enables an organization to evolve toward their fitness-for-purpose while avoiding resistance and overreaching. The organizational maturity levels defined in the KMM can be seen as different stages in the evolution of the organizations that use the model’s guidelines.
The transition and consolidation practices together codify the mechanisms for successful evolution in alignment with the Evolutionary Change Model.
Transition practices serve to stress the organization just enough—avoiding resistance to change and overreaching—to lead to reflection and realization that the current state still can be improved. When an organization aspires to achieve the outcomes that characterize the next level of maturity, it can add transition practices to facilitate that.
Consolidation practices are practices that are necessary to achieve the outcomes that define a maturity level. An organization at a lower maturity level tends to resist or repel them unless some preparatory work is done first. More precisely, introducing (or pushing) the transition practices causes the organization to evolve further and, therefore, pull and implement the consolidation practices.
For instance, Maturity Level 0 organization should be transitioning to Maturity Level 1. While they are doing this, they are still Maturity Level 0. And that concept iterates down through the poster.
However, the common pattern that we have seen a lot, was the reluctance from people who identified the organization as “clearly Maturity Level 0” and thought they should not start applying any of Maturity Level 1 practices (including transition practices). But in reality, it is the opposite – you should start applying Maturity Level 1 practices, as this is how you get to Maturity Level 1 from Maturity Level 0.
Hence, we grouped Maturity Level 0 to 1 practices with Maturity Level 0, because while transitioning it’s still ML0 organization. And we did it for each level.
The poster is now modified trying to encourage Maturity Level 1 organizations to start applying Maturity Level 2 transition practices. We have more clearly labeled them as ML1 to ML2, ML2 to ML3 practices, etc., where previously they were labeled as ML2 Transition and ML2 Consolidation, ML3 Transition, and ML3 Consolidation, which was creating the wrong mindset.
This change will be officially part of the KMM 1.3 release and is now available for download for KMM+ users and David J Anderson School of Management subscribers. Download the poster here.