Daniel Vacanti

The Kanban Pocket Guide: Chapter 8 – Thoughts On How To Get Started

This entry is part 8 of 9 in the series The Kanban Pocket Guide

As you read this book, you are probably already forming a decent idea of what a Kanban system would look like in your context. The harder part often is just getting started. Here we describe an approach to help you get started. There are multiple ways to start with Kanban, the one described below is …

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The Kanban Pocket Guide: Chapter 7 – Unleashing the True Power of Kanban

This entry is part 7 of 9 in the series The Kanban Pocket Guide

Having gotten to this point in the book, you could be forgiven for thinking that Kanban is only applicable to development teams. However, we would argue that the true power of Kanban is unleashed only when we start scaling our implementation along the dimensions described in this chapter. While the implementation and optimization of a …

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The Kanban Pocket Guide: Chapter 6 – The Basic Metrics of Flow

This entry is part 6 of 9 in the series The Kanban Pocket Guide

The four flow measures to track in Kanban are: WIP: The number of work items started but not finished.Cycle Time: The amount of elapsed time between when a work item started and when a work item finished.Work Item Age: The amount of elapsed time between when a work item started and the current time.Throughput: The …

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The Kanban Pocket Guide: Chapter 5 – Improving a Workflow to Optimize for Flow

This entry is part 5 of 9 in the series The Kanban Pocket Guide

In the Kanban Guide, we purposefully gave preference to the word “optimizing” over  the word “maximizing”.  This is because to “maximize” value is a very dangerous sentiment.  Its fairly straightforward to maximize value over the short term.  Just burn your people out, make decisions where you favour long term risk for short term gain (instead of short term risk …

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The Kanban Pocket Guide: Chapter 4 – Defining and Visualizing a Workflow

This entry is part 4 of 9 in the series The Kanban Pocket Guide

Pre-covid19 pandemic definition of Kanban: “We have Post-Its up on a whiteboard”. Post-covid19 pandemic definition of Kanban: “We have a Jira board set up”. I’d love to know where the misconception that Kanban is only about visualizing work came from.  Saying that Kanban is only about visualization is like saying Scotland is only about whisky or …

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The Kanban Pocket Guide: Chapter 3 – Actively Managing Items in a Workflow

This entry is part 3 of 9 in the series The Kanban Pocket Guide

I once worked with a team that had designed a Kanban board which had a global Work In Progress limit of 9.  They had also added an expedite lane on their board (a big no-no as anyone who has followed my work knows) but at least had set a WIP Limit of 1 for that expedite …

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The Kanban Pocket Guide: Chapter 2 – The Service Level Expectation

This entry is part 2 of 9 in the series The Kanban Pocket Guide

Maybe you’ve heard a myth about Kanban that goes something like this: “Because Kanban has no timeboxes, items are allowed to take as much time as they need to finish.” Or maybe you’ve heard something like this: “We can’t do Scrum because we can’t finish items in two weeks.  So we do Kanban because Kanban has …

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The Kanban Pocket Guide: Chapter 1 – The Single Most Important Part of Kanban

This entry is part 1 of 9 in the series The Kanban Pocket Guide

“How would you teach someone to read a Cumulative Flow Diagram?”  (Spoiler alert: the CFD is most definitely NOT the single most important part of Kanban.) It was circa 2010 and I had just met Frank Vega for the first time at a Kanban meetup.  In all honesty, I may have met Frank in passing before that, …

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Don’t Be a Ditka

Or, Can You Prioritize Your Way to Optimizing Value?Or, CD3 is Bollocks TL;DR: CD3 is often touted as a prioritization/sequencing method used to help an organization maximize its value delivery. However, CD3 requires a specific set of assumptions to be true in order to provide an optimal result. Those assumptions are simply not valid in …

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