Agile Method And Gemba Kaizen

 Alik Levin    JD Meier published recently great post covering Agile Method. After reading it I could clearly see the lines connecting the method JD described with the Japanese Gemba Kaizen - common sense, low cost approach of managing workplace effectively.

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Gemba Kaizen can be distilled to three keys - Housekeeping, Cutting Muda (waste), Standardization.

Key #1 - Housekeeping
  1. Sort – Separate everything unnecessary and get rid of it. Put a red tag on unnecessary items (for example, unused machines), then remove them.
  2. Straighten – Put key items in order so they can be found readily. Straighten logically, so items can be located with a minimum of wasted effort.
  3. Scrub – Tools and workplaces should be clean. Dirt and foreign particles can cause machinery to malfunction.
  4. Systematize – Make a schedule for cleaning and for checking that all is in order. This ensures that housekeeping is maintained constantly.
  5. Standardize – Make the preceding steps part of a regular process.

Agile Method gives a very clean view of the process, activities, and deliverables thus eliminating noise throughout the process of building the solution architecture. It seems like it's been build with Housekeeping in mind - Sort, Straighten, Scrub, Systemize, Standardize.

Key #2 - Cutting Muda

Muda (waste) is anything that does not add value. JD has been writing on it in his Get Lean, Eliminate Waste.

More Kaizen to Agile Method!

Key #3 - Standardization

The third key of Gemba Kaizen encourages to follow clear process in iterative manner. One picture worth a thousand words. JD shares the following chart that gives an overview of the Agile Method:



Toyota does Kaizen and succeeds. Apply Agile Method and succeed too.

Agile Development Kaizen style!


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