Introducing Leanban: The 3rd Generation of Lean-Agile for the Team

March 16, 2016 — Posted by Al Shalloway

Leanban was created as an answer to the following challenges we’ve seen in many organizations:

  • Many of a company’s Agile teams are improperly following the method that they’ve adopted
  • Different teams use different methods making it difficult for people to move from one team to another
  • Teams following different methods often have difficulty working well together
  • There is significant dogma in the Scrum vs Kanban camps
  • When Scrum is followed well teams don’t implement solid Kanban practices that would make them better
  • When Kanban is followed well teams don’t implement solid Scrum practices that would make them
  • Scrum and Kanban are both team centric approaches that need extensions to work better at scale

In other words, team level approaches in large organizations are having challenges.  It’s been clear to us for years that the mindsets of both Scrum and Kanban are not consistent with each other and that a better approach than either provides is available.  Leanban is an answer to these challenges.  In a nutshell, Leanban is a team level approach based on Lean-Thinking that incorporates the practices of Scrum, Kanban and eXtreme Programming as appropriate for the teams using it.  It provides a consistent approach to team level Lean-Agile while enabling teams to adjust their practices to their situation. It also makes clear what teams must do – avoiding the common challenges of Scrum-but, Scrumerfall and shallow Kanban that are so prevalent. 

Practice based methods tend to have teams abandon key practices when they prove difficult because the intentions of the practices are not made clear.  Since no practice works everywhere, teams tend to abandon ones that prove difficult – even when the team should continue with them.  By making it clear what the intentions of the practices are, and presenting alternatives to implement them, Leanban creates options for teams to choose from to get their work done effectively.

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Al Shalloway

CEO, Net Objectives

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About the author | Al Shalloway

Al Shalloway is the founder and CEO of Net Objectives. With over 40 years of experience, Alan is an industry thought leader in Lean, Kanban, product portfolio management, SAFe, Scrum and agile design.



        

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