Part III: Topics In Depth

Parts I and II are intentionally written in a minimalist manner so that they serve as a small guidebook. However, the topics used in part one need more explanation to be full effective. In depth chapters on each of the Part I and II topics are presented here for the reader to read when they need them.

The Business Case For Agility. Agile is often described as iteratively building software in increments. This is a focus on the team and the mechanics of how they work. It is more effective to focus on the reason for being Agile – achieving business agility. Business agility is the ability to deliver highest business value quickly, predictably, sustainably and with high quality. Building software is not our goal, realizing business value is. Software is often a component of this, of course.

Mapping Your Value Stream. Value Stream Mapping is an activity that catalogs the steps in the work producing a product or delivering a service. It reveals where the interfaces are between activities, as well as the times involved in and between process steps.

Enhancing While Simplifying Agile Product Management With Lean Product Management.  The purpose of Lean Product Management is to:

  • enable quick realization of business value predictably, sustainably and with high quality
  • identify the most important work to be done
  • create visibility on this work to help people align around the realization of value from it
  • create clarity on who is involved in this work – not just building it, but any delivery, marketing and support required as well

Why Agile Coaches Need to Know Both Scrum and Kanban. It’s not Scrum or Kanban or even Scrum and Kanban, it’s recognizing both spring from Lean-Thinking. Understanding that enables you to provide an approach designed for your team’s context.

The Value Stream Impedance Scorecard. The Value Stream Impedance Scorecard (VSIS) is a qualitative method of determining if a change to your system will be an improvement or not. It is used to predict whether a speculated “to be” state will be an improvement over the current “as is” state. It does this being guided by whether or not the change will improve value realization.  Essentially it looks to see if the resistance to flow will increase or decrease. The VSI Scorecard should be used as a heuristic as change in complex systems is not predictable although it can follow patterns.

Strategic Planning and Lean Portfolio Management. Strategic planning sets the stage for the development teams’ efforts. This chapter discusses the relationships between Lean Portfolio Management, Lean-Agile Product Management and planning , dependency management and collaboration before going into Lean Portfolio management in greater depth.