Troy Tuttle – Why Kanban

Posted In: Announcements, Kanban by aaronsanders

Troy Tuttle will speak on “Why Kanban“.

Kanban is receiving a large amount of attention recently. What does it offer compared to other established agile approaches? Answering that question may require you to hit the “reset” button on previously held biases and assumptions.

Kanban blends Lean thought with ideas from first generation agile methodologies. To get started with Kanban, we will examine what steps are necessary to establish a transparent, work-limited, pull system. We will highlight the perils of allowing too much work-in-progress and how it affects development performance. Once established, Kanban teams need only a few metrics and tools to monitor their performance and improvement.

Troy Tuttle is a self-described pragmatic agilist, and Kanban practitioner, with more than a decade of experience in delivering software in the finance and health industries and as a consultant. As a team leader he has mentored teams on improving their approach to iterative development though achieving technical proficiency. He advocates teams improve their performance through pursuit of better practices like continuous integration and automated testing. Troy is the founder of the Kansas City Limited WIP Society and is a regular speaker at local area groups on team related topics. He currently works as a Project Lead Consultant with AdventureTech Group of Kansas City, KS.


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Kelley Horton will talk on “The Power of Visibility: Driving a Lean-Agile Transition with Visual Controls“.

A Charlotte based healthcare quality and cost improvement organization (Premier Inc. healthcare alliance, CITS Division) has made a large transition to Lean-Agile. One of the key drivers was gaining organizational buy-in to the power of minimizing WIP. The Program Management Office made the decision early on that queues of work must first be seen before they could be managed. This experience report provides examples of how visibility into organizational WIP allowed business stakeholders to create a portfolio view of continuously prioritized business initiatives. The dashboards and visual controls that managed this work ultimately helped the teams continuously decompose work into right-sized deliverable increments. This allowed predictable release planning by the business, and allowed the work to be pulled into focus by development teams for incremental delivery. What emerged was the ability to “see” flow through the value stream.

Kelley Horton is Director of the Corporate IT Program Management Office for the Premier Inc. healthcare alliance (www.premierinc.com). She has program management and process improvement expertise with over 15 years of experience in creating and leading Program/Project Management offices for product and application development organizations as well as implementing and improving Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC) processes.


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Alisson Vale will talk about “Making the Work Visible“.

That is what we have been doing at Phidelis since Kanban has become essential in our way to develop and delivery software. We have observed that hidden characteristics of our working system start to reveal once we discover clever ways to put the work, the process, and the communication resulted from collaboration, visible.

We do that by using an electronic application that merges tracking data with visual elements in a social and collaborative perspective. The process and the representation of the work itself are presented using Lean concepts and terminology. The application absorbs what sticks in the real process, creating an interesting way to forge a management system based on experience rather than prescription.

On this presentation I will explore the way that we design our processes using these elements. How do we mix signs and data to create visual information? How do we put visible measures near visible work so we can influence the whole system in a positive direction? How do we make the collective efforts explicit in a way that we constantly reinforce the need for collaboration on a daily basis? How do we use Lean and Kanban concepts to give us not only a direction, but also a clear goal to conduct the system and its evolution?

Alisson Vale is founder of Phidelis Technologies. With more than 15 year of experience with software development and at least 8 years leading and coaching software projects, he is an Agile enthusiast in Brazil, where he has a strong level of participation by writing articles, doing presentations and debating on discussion forums. Today he is a technical coach and Product Leader at Phidelis, where a lot of ideas and techniques are constantly challenged and applied in real world scenarios.


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David Anderson, conference chair, will be speaking on “Kanban and Accelerated Emergence of High Maturity“.

Kanban is proving a key enabler in the development of a kaizen culture and has been shown to create the emergence of high maturity behaviors (CMMI model level 4 & 5) whilst remaining true to Agile and Lean values. This presentation is based on case studies over a four year period including teams from Microsoft, Corbis, BBC, Phidelis, BNP Parisbas and others. Teams using Kanban are empirically observed to practice quantitative management with many utilizing statistical process control as part of an objective continuous improvement and project management program. Cross team process performance appraisal has been observed. Root cause analysis and elimination is often commonplace and a Toyota style kaizen and kaka improvement program is also common. Kanban teams have been seen to evolve to these high maturity practices in unprecedented short time frames such as 9 months. This presentation will discuss why high maturity is both desirable and necessary from a business perspective and a process adoption perspective, report evidence of high maturity on teams using Kanban, discuss the emergence of high maturity behavior without a formal process definition, and debate the cultural reasons why Kanban may be responsible for accelerated achievement of high maturity.

David Anderson is a thought leader in managing effective software teams. He leads a consulting firm dedicated to improving economic performance of knowledge worker businesses – reducing risk, improving predictability with successful change management that encounters minimal resistance.

He has 25+ years experience in the software industry starting with computer games in the early 1980’s. He has managed software teams delivering superior productivity and quality using innovative agile methods. David pioneered Lean concepts of flow and pull in software engineering and is regarded as the founder of the Kanban method in software development. His first book published in 2003, Agile Management for Software Engineering – Applying the Theory of Constraints for Business Results, introduced many ideas from Lean and Theory of Constraints into software engineering and laid the foundations for use of kanban systems and evolution of the Kanban method in recent years.

David is a founder of the Lean Software & Systems Consortium, a not for profit dedicated to promoting better standards of professionalism in software development and introducing a professional accreditation program, and the Limited WIP Society, a community website dedicated to growing the Kanban movement, http://www.limitedwipsociety.org

Email… dja@agilemanagement.net


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Rob Hathaway will be speaking on “Finding Flow, Leaving Time-boxing Behind“.

The concept of One-Piece-Flow has long been a goal in Lean manufacturing and many have talked about flow being a principle for lean software engineering but without details of what this really is and how it can be achieved. Time-boxing is a technique found is most agile methodologies but, one that ultimately stands in the way of flow.

This controversial talk will examine the issues that time-boxing introduces and how a team can over come them run without time-boxes to move to a flow based process. The talk will also cover how you can transition smoothly away from time-boxes using lean metrics to provide solid evidence that time-boxing and estimation can safely be removed from a process leaving something more effective in place.

This talk is not a direct experience report but a set of techniques for working without time-boxes where I’ll be throwing in examples from the teams I’ve worked with to back up my points.The talk is based on 10 years experience of agile coaching and over two years of experience in coaching teams in using Kanban for software development and running without time-boxes in media and telecomms companies.

Rob Hathaway is a Lean/Agile Consultant at the specialist management consultancy IndigoBlue. Rob has spent most of his career helping teams become more effective at delivering software and has a formidable track record of success. He has over 15 years experience in some of the world’s largest companies, across a range of industries including telecoms, banking, media, military, logistics and is currently helping organisations utilise Kanban and Lean processes/techniques to optimise their software delivery processes.


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Clinton Keith will be speaking on “Kanban for Video Game Production“.

This session will describe how Lean Production and Kanban has been applied to game development. Lean principles and Kanban tools have been used by a number of developers, including the presenter, to slash production costs by over 50%. As a complement, or replacement, to Scrum, Lean/Kanban provides predictability, transparency and optimization for complex game production.

Clinton Keith is an independent agile coach Certified Scrum Trainer with 15 years of video game development experience. Clinton introduced the game industry to Scrum in 2003 and Lean/Kanban in 2006. He has coached teams at dozens of game studios. He is the author of “Agile Game Development with Scrum” which will be published in early 2010. His website is www.ClintonKeith.com.


Karl Scotland will be speaking about “A Kanban Multiverse“.

A Kanban Multiverse

Wikipedia defines a Multiverse as the hypothetical set of multiple possible universes that together comprise everything that physically exists: the entirety of space and time, all forms of matter, energy and momentum, and the physical laws and constants that govern them. A Kanban Multiverse can be defined as the hypothetical set of multiple possible Kanban Boards that together comprise everything that physically could be visualised: the entirety of scope and time, all forms of work type, status and flow, and the organisational laws and constants that govern them. This talk will explore how a single Kanban Board might visualise these multiple aspects in a limited and constrained space.

Karl Scotland is a versatile software practitioner with over 15 years of experience covering development, project management, team leadership, coaching and training. For the last 10 years he has been successfully applying Agile methods, and most recently has been a pioneer and advocate of using Kanban Systems for software development. Currently a Lean and Agile Coach with EMC Consulting, Karl is a founder member of the Lean Software and Systems Consortium and the Limited WIP Society, and has previously championed Agile and Lean Thinking with the BBC and Yahoo! Karl writes about his latest ideas on his blog at http://availagility.co.uk/


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James Shore and Arlo Belshee will be speaking about “Single Piece Flow in Kanban, a How-To“.

Most Kanban systems pull work, continuously, through a sequence of phases in order to take advantage of specialists and match existing org charts. However, this fundamentally limits how low you can drop WiP, adds complexity, places constraints on your ability to Optimize the Whole System, and prevents whole-system Single Piece Flow. Teams struggle with constraints in one part of the system while excess capacity exists in another. There is always something “in progress.” As a result, they have trouble shipping software.

This session reveals the secret sauce of the “Portland School” of Kanban: simultaneous phases. These techniques have been part of Agile from the beginning, but few teams are aware of them and even fewer practice them. In this highly interactive session, come experience how simultaneous phases allow you to avoid hacks like “buffers,” “managing constraints,” or “refactoring stories,” and make single-piece continuous flow possible.

James Shore is a thought leader in the Agile software development community. He consults with development teams worldwide to help them achieve high throughput, market focus, productivity, and quality. His work helps teams generate opportunities, reduce costs, and respond quickly and effectively to changing market conditions. James was an early adopter of Agile development and he continues to lead, teach, write and consult on Agile development processes. In 2001, he was one of the first ten people to sign the newly-released Agile Manifesto and in 2005 he was an inaugural recipient of the prestigious Gordon Pask Award for Contributions to Agile Practice. James is a popular lecturer on software development process and his work is frequently referenced in software trade publications. He is the co-author of The Art Of Agile Development (O’Reilly, 2007).

Arlo: I do what needs to be done, and I do it well. If I don’t know how to do it, I will learn from people, books, the web, and experimentation – simultaneously. I quickly learn the systems behind systems, and within a few days am able to flex any system in ways in which God Did Not Intend – and ways in which he did – to get the job done.


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Mattias Skarin will be speaking about “Converting a Scrum Team to Kanban“.

A case study of a Scrum team who shifted to Kanban in the midst of a runaway project. I will show how we wrestled with problems under tight deadlines and step-by-step brought the project and the team’s self confidence back on track. We found kanban to be a useful tool into seeing and agreeing, inside the team and among stakeholders, what issues to deal with first. I will also talk about the complementary techniques we used (besides kanban) for dealing with the problems we encountered.

Who am I?

After 9 years in software I’ve decided to learn what it takes to create successful software. During this journey I’ve helped helped several software teams deliver with confidence, I’ve scaled Scrum to 10+ teams (cutting software cycle time from 24 months to 4), and improved life at operations using Kanban.

I’m an author of the book “Kanban and Scrum, making the most of both”. I train and coach in Lean, Kanban and TDD.