Leanban is an approach to help Agile teams select and use approaches that best fit their situation and needs. It uses Lean principles to guide them.  Leanban provides the consistent approach necessary for delivering business quickly and sustainably across the organization. It equips teams to implement the minimum business increments that have been selected for development.

The Leanban Primer is a useful reference for teams who have had some basic training in agile practices (such as Scrum or kanban) and want to use agile in the context of Lean. It is designed to assist the transition to effective Lean-Agile practices that enable enterprise delivery of value to customers.

The White Paper: An Introduction to Leanban gives a quick overview of Leanban: Its advantages, what it is, issues in implementation and getting started, roles and artifacts, and some Leanban practices.

Watch a webinar on Third-Generation Team Agile: Leanban.  You can also get background information on it here.

Lean-Scrum is the 2nd generation of Scrum - Scrum done under the context of Lean principles.  Scrum has been acknowledged as a partial implementation of Lean-Flow.  Unfortunately, classic Scrum has ignored this which has led to patterns of challenge for many Scrum teams. Here are some of the challenges that arise in classic Scrum which can be minimized or eliminated altogether with Lean-Scrum:

Challenges at the team level

  • Many stories incomplete at the end of a sprint
  • Testing not being completed at the end of a sprint
  • Inability to handle the interruptions that occur during the sprint
  • Estimation takes too long
  • Lack of predictability of business value delivered
  • Difficulties with distributed teams
  • Inability to create the requisite cross-functional teams
  • Starting too many things too soon
  • Many many more

Challenges when multiple teams are involved

  • Lack of predictability of business value delivered
  • Inability to scale
  • Significant thrashing when multiple teams attempt to integrate their work
  • Inability to achieve alignment of stakeholders on what to build next

If you experience any of these challenges read on, as this set of pages will provide invaluable guidance on how to overcome them. Net Objectives has been helping companies using Scrum to best take advantage of Lean longer than most anybody.  Early on we found that while classic Scrum worked well for a few teams, many organizations were having difficulties getting it to scale.  We started using Lean to guide our clients' large scale transitions almost a decade ago.  We found that Scrum within Lean-Thinking vastly improve Scrum.  In a nutshell, Lean-Thinking suggests:

  • Attend to the entire development cycle (from concept to consumption of the software)
  • Eliminate waste
    • Remove delays in the workflow
    • Only work on the most important items
  • Respect the people doing the work but include management in the process
  • Build quality in
  • Manage the workflow explicitly and with limits on how much work can be taking place at any one time

This is a different mindset that classic Scrum with a few Lean principles incorporated into it  This "Scrum within Lean" mindset instead of the common "Lean within Scrum" makes all the difference.

The biggest changes to what you do will be:

  • focus on delivering business value
  • have an explicit workflow
  • manage your work-in-progress with either limits or coordination methods
  • use Acceptance Test-Driven Development
  • take an holistic view

Net Objectives has been the leader in large-scale transition in the Agile space for over a decade.  We have proven methods that will enhance your Scrum methods.

We've worked with hundreds of Scrum teams and trained thousands of people in Scrum over more than a decade. We’ve seen patterns of success and challenges.  We have seen many teams struggle with Scrum because they were unaware of how Lean-thinking can extend classic Scrum.  This page is designed to help you avoid the easier challenges we’ve seen most teams new to Scrum face as well as to arm you with powerful methods beyond Scrum that will help larger Scrum implementations.

If you are interested in better agile methods at the enterprise level we recommend reading our book Lean-Agile Software Development: Achieving Enterprise Agility or seeing our Business-Management resources page.

See a recording of our webinar on Enhancing and Extending Scrum With Lean

Access the Lean-Agile Pocket Guide for Scrum Teams online, or buy a hard copy

We’ve organized Lean-Scrum site into the following sections:

See our After Lean-Agile Team Training Support Page if you've just taken one of our Lean-Agile courses.

Please contact us if you have any questions or want some help.