Monday, May 2, 2022

Lean Thinking in Software Design

By Pascal Dennis (bio)

One of my great work pleasures is helping to translate the System of Profound Knowledge, as Deming called it, for new and different industries.

Taiichi Ohno, Deming, Shingo, Juran et al have given us fundamental principles gained through hard experience.

But we have to translate these so they work for us in the here and now.

Thus, Lean is both

  • Do – a set of principles that informs one’s life, and a

  • Jutsu – a practical set of techniques that works

It’s fun translating visual management, standardized work, quality in the process and other fundamentals in industries like software design.

Agile, Scrum and related practices are very simpatico with Lean. In fact, if I may suggest, they are Lean’s child (or grandchild).

Our software partners recognize the need for an integrated management system that aligns things like:

  • Purpose

  • Core Mental Models – how we think

  • Two work streams: Run the Business, and Improve the Business

  • Connected Level 1, 2 and 3 checking

  • Leader Standard Work & Daily Accountability

  • People & Leadership Develop

  • The Four Rules etc.

If we check well, reality gives us frank, binary feedback: OK or Not OK.

The answer is usually the latter! And, as ever, we learn by doing. Each organization’s journey is unique and their own. Coaches are guides, whisperers, and on occasion, taskmasters.

Step by step we walk the narrow path to enlightenment and good business results! We must have both, no?

We partially succeed – and that makes all the difference.

Best regards,


In case you missed our last few blogs... please feel free to have another look…

Problem Solving and the Worlds of Reflection & Experience
Learning How to Manage
Bozos and HR
Strategy and the Worlds of Thought & Experience

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