LeanKanban-2014 - review of the conference and video reports

    Last fall, the LeanKanban Russia-2014 management conference was held .

    Two tracks, a couple of dozens of reports from invited Western gurus and well-known ours, both consultants and live top managers. Actually, I shot and published the video promptly, a week later, but only now did I get my hands on it to watch and write a short review, in order to orient and recommend to the potential viewer exactly what he needs.

    As usual, my videos are montage from several cameras and a screen, sound from a microphone, versions with English and Russian translation, and everything is invigorated for quick and dynamic viewing. To feel the atmosphere of all this - here is a one-minute video about the conference, without any special spoilers.

    Конференция чисто менеджерская, от поднимаемых тем и аргументов, и местами сильно избитого бизнес-жаргона, у «сферического линейного разработчика» наверняка будет butthur идиосинкразия («WAT?? Процессы? Инновации? Менеджеры-бездельники! Фигли думать, трясти надо!»), но с точки зрения менеджмента — это самые свежие тренды. Так что наверно, в отделенном от хабра мозге мегамозге, обзору будет самое место.

    Под катом будет уже краткий обзор, со ссылками на видео и прочие материалы (т.е. не бойтесь открыть страницу, видео не встроено).

    Actually the name "LeanKanban" - catches the well-known keywords "Lean" and "Kanban", and it seems like it’s clear what. Unfortunately, I remember from personal experience that many people think that “Lean” is something about rationalization in Japanese factories, the struggle for a penny and a second, and “Kanban” is when colorful stickers are glued to boards and walls .

    In fact, the main topics at this conference were:
    • “Anti-fragility” in the sense of the last book by Nassim Taleb - about why the classical conservative strategies of “normal distribution” do not work, why you need to use “asymmetric strategies”, make backup plans, take risks and, I'm not afraid of this somewhat tortured word, “generate innovation” . Only adaptation and evolution, otherwise "survival is optional." It is symbolic that almost a month after the conference, the “black swan” happened with the ruble, and it’s very interesting whether the business of all the managers sitting in the filled rooms survived?
    • Processes - their scaling, balancing, optimization, scaling. Even without reference to specific methodologies and practices, the classic analysis is Goldratt’s “Theory of Constraints”, the search for moving bottlenecks and bottlenecks, the expansion and restructuring of the organization.
    • Specific implementations of agile processes - from the “implement Kanban in any incomprehensible situation” approach to the comparison between Kanban and Scrum — the next formalized Agile approach.
    • “Lean Startup” is a very different topic from the classic “Lean” (the so-called “Lean Manufacturing”) optimizing existing processes in large companies, Eric Rhys just called his famous book about the cheapest and fastest start, and about turns in search for purpose, meaning and money. Yes, now ordinary users are forced to face the consequences of such an approach every day — these are disappearing services and enticing landing pages (“here’s the service for XXX is almost ready, sign up for testing” - but you don’t even start to do anything) ... but alas, life becomes more and more competitive, and you can start in a different way only with a dense financial rear, and it is better to tolerate a rapidly deceased service of enthusiasts than to find out about some facespal epikfeym multimillion state investments.
    • Well, a separate topic is taxiing by corporate monsters, not always even using manufacturing Kanban methods. The connection with the main topics can be indirect, but this is a real experience, because not everyone manages to be in the top of a large company and not to ditch it.
    As for going to talk about it alive - it’s not even a fact that this conference will be held this year (the times have come, the conferences on software management, and others too, are closing), probably the closest on the topic is AgileDays-2015 , there will be these topics, and even many speakers.

    And if in the comments you’ll get at least five people who wish (hey, if there’s life after the hubr?) - I can make a torrent with audio files - yes, a lot of interesting things are lost from the screen, but for a management conference, as well as for business literature, this is tolerable, but can listen in the background.

    Anti-fragility - adaptability and evolution

    • Evolutionary changes through metrics - building an effective modern businessadditional materials + (+ Fit for Purpose - resilience and agility in modern businesses - video in English) - the actual keynote of the conference by David Anderson- “Adopt at any cost”, “why we are here - nobody wants to be the next nokia”, understand the value delivered to the client, segment, at least according to the parameters - “quality” or “speed”, if you can’t provide everything. And one of the first places to adapt is that closer to the customer is delivery. We need to optimize it, and here Kanban can greatly help to build adaptive cycles. Illustrative business cases were dubious in some places — scary examples of pizzas and, surprisingly, a positive example — expensive English taxi cabs adapted for London. But within a couple of weeks after the report, the anti-Uber protests of these very supertaxists began, and in the future, of course, they probably have no chance if they are not saved by law.
    • Think and act in a new wayadditional materials + (+ Think Anew, Act Anew - video in English) from Dave Snowden (no, this is another famous Snowden ). Well, here it’s just “Talebshchina” in all its glory - “resilience” beats “robustness”, “world Pareto” beats “world of the house”, non-trivial evolution of complex systems, dozens of drop dead stories, it’s impossible to retell - a lecture for more than an hour.
    • " Do not deal with uncertainty - rethinking the approach to risk management " additional materials . Again, “Anti- Fragility ” from Donald Reinertsen (by the way, who studied Russian at school and with a bunch of curtsies - “This is Kolmogorov’s country, you all love statistics”, “Russian Tractor works for forty years, etc.”). But the report is in English so the original video → " Rethinking Robustness - Uncertainty is Not the Enemy". The senselessness of dealing with uncertainty and risks with a total assessment, six sigma processes and reinsurance with temporary and resource buffers. Instead of the passive strength of reinsurance buffers, you need “active detaching” and gain from external influences, through fast feedback cycles and appropriate adaptability. “Stressors”, “option theory” and other talebshchina - here the speaker even referred directly to him, and of course - “delivery in small batches” + “intelligence with little blood”, “quick feedback loop”, “easily part with unnecessary” - in general, act like a smart player.

    Processes and bottlenecks

    • " Patterns of development scaling " additional materials - Askhat Urazbaev in search of bottlenecks in this company of developers. No more abstract examples, pizzas and taxis, absolutely vital cases - how to speed up development, how the most productive employees become bottlenecks, how - elements of the theory of limitations in practice. Queues, rework, releases ... serialization of requirements, priority steering, feature teams and tiger team, The Krylov’s fable is not always right - it’s often possible to break through with a transfer and regrouping of employees.
    • Kanban upgrade. Drum-buffer-rope " additional materials - And this is a classic exposition of the classic manufactory Kanban from Tahiti Ono, and Theory of Constraint Eliyahu Goldratt, and it is shown that the principles of TOC are a generalization, often necessary, of Kanban-principles (ie Kanban is only a private solution TOC). As was often the case with Maxim Dorofeev’s trainings, there was his favorite “Borodach problem” (essentially a simplified version of the task from “Haystack Syndrome” by Goldratt, by the way, I recommend a couple of reports on this problem), and half an hour of bullying an audience turning millions who are accustomed to maximizing "debauchery for investments", and who are not able to solve the simplest task ... All with jokes, in which there is a fraction of jokes, jokes ("When we try to shove the inhospitable, we shove previously shoved ... ”), and in the additional materials there is a link to the magical self-planning exel.

    In any incomprehensible situation - implement Kanban

    • Kanban and Scrum are allies, not enemies; additional materials are American Jonathan Hansen , but also with sympathy for us (“Photo ... Is it me in Omsk - were you in Omsk? A good city ...”), and here is a video from the original track - " Kanban and Scrum - Allies not Enemies ". Breaking and optimizing SCRUM, simplifying the minimum rules, sucks. SCRUM rules are SCRUM rules “3-4-3 - 3 roles, 4 types of meetings, 3 artifacts”, otherwise Scrumbutt and Scramno. So it’s better to bring Kanban with additional rules. But the Kanban or Scrum dichotomy is false. For example, Kanban can be used internally or in parallel with SCRUM, for serializing bug processing, or vice versa, for serializing background work, for example, eating in the background of a healthy epic story, so that some completed “normal tasks” can be shown at the demonstrations. In general, this case - “kanbanization of epic stories, so that there is an elephant in the background in parts, along with normal tasks that can be shown” is somewhat frightening (we did not abandon SCRUM, we only give it “10%” of the time, and the rest of the time kanbanim something huge and not taken into account, just to show something live to the customer, and not that the tests pass). IMHO, it’s better to do it as it is, and at worst show the customer infographics of task completion,
    • Scale Agile - Choose Scrum or Kanbanadditional materials - More global here - the choice of methodology is considered before the start of the project, taking into account the properties of the project, customer expectations and teams. On a few examples (there were projects at $ 60M), there were examples of fails. Pros and cons, two presenter presenters taking turns keeping pace. By the way, there were many contradictions with the previous reports - there were even “under-kanbans”, and vice versa - it is impossible to implement the kanban in individual sections (as recommended in the previous report), only in its entirety. Strange experiments with economies of scale - I heard about shared Product Owners, but shared SCRUM Masters are definitely a perversion. Theme Kanban vs. Scrum "is inexhaustible as an atom, already six years ago I remember it was discussed for five hoursin a row, I’ll leave more links on the topic → [1] , and if suddenly these lines are read by someone perplexed “Scrum? Kanban? WTF? ”, Then you have a brief introduction .

    Lean Startup and Innovation

    • Lean Startup as an ability to stimulate innovationadditional materials - The director of the Skolkovo startup academy, a Russian-speaking American, and a former startup entrepreneur spoke. Here is a story about the lean / economical startup method itself (Steve Blang, Bob Dorf, Eric Rees), and the applications of this method in innovative breakthroughs within large companies. Yes, the world is changing - recently the average life time of the company was 60 years, now it is 15. And this mortality is not for children - not only young start-ups are dying, they are dying and healthy dead companies (Kodak, Nokia ...). So only hardcore is only Customer Development, only street hypothesis validation. "Stop selling, start listening." Classic tricks of a fraudulent start without a product.
    • Creating innovations in corporations - Intra-management and startup culture as toolsadditional materials - And here is precisely the theme of revitalizing healthy petrified monsters. "In a large company, kapets is difficult with innovation ... and all this is superimposed on their power and greatness ..." ©. After all, they have only one thought - “How to perform KPI?”, And this can always be done for a short period ... What should I do? "Merchant approach - buy everything." Alas, purchased wild startups in captivity do not survive. "The managerial approach - to choose the best and organize SuperCreativeLabStudio" - no, it does not work. Even the best of the worst are still infected by the bureaucracy and most likely worse than the market. “Venture approach - we sponsor a hackathon” ... Oh, all these attempts of the elderly to surround themselves with youth ... Everything is bad, but the superhero must save ”intand prener, "a corporate entrepreneur. Not only is it unclear where to get it, and in any case, you will have to change a lot of things ... By the way, a new version will be read soon .
    Bonus - here are a dozen more reports about Lean Startup .

    Corporate hell world

    • Hoshin Kanri. Deployment of corporate policyadditional materials - The report is strongly orthogonal to the rest, where permissive cultures, agile approaches, and contempt for metrics were promoted. For here it is not an IT kanban with boards and hipsters, but a real production Lean in real factories. And here we are talking about factory totalitarianism, the formation of a culture with the deployment of policies in order to convey the mission to each ordinary employee. “Companies whose employees understand their mission and goals have 29% greater productivity compared to other companies” © ... Oh, how! On the slides, sad people in helmets with quilted jackets (looks like a medieval army), in front of a diamond-shaped emblem with a company mission, and a board where they should sign ... Againfound parallels with Suvorov ... But everything is not about democracy (this is anryl), but about a strategy for a hundred years, a breakthrough vision, and only innovations will come from there ... Amazing “business games with oranges”. In general, one story is more awesome than another ... and even on the “X-matrix of the Director General-2020” I was completely covered. And there were the “lean management dashboard" and the "Navigator sustainable development screen" ... "The share of units with PI5S ..." ... metrics — tables — numbers… Hardcore, but in real production it is probably impossible without this.
    • Real Change Managementadditional materials - Organizational and cultural transformation of the Russian branch of Raifazenbank. Quotes from Hitler Lenin, Helmut Moltke, Newtor. Deming cycles. It would seem - go to Agile - take, issue an order and go ... but no. Even the PDCA cycle does not work. ... everything is not simple, but everything must be focused on goals and all employees should sing like Spice Girls "So tell me what you want what you really really want" ... They made a start-up, six key directions. The changes are concise and iterative. Communicate. Intrigue. Put problems. Do not impose decisions. And all this at a marathon distance. The author seems to have succeeded.

    So, look, I hope this gives you fresh thoughts (not necessarily those that the authors had in mind). Write reviews, comments, reviews - even it will be interesting for me to read an alternative look. And for speakers and organizers this is even more interesting.

    And I remind you - sign up if you are interested in torrent with audio.

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