Unlocking the secret to accurately forecast product releases

Charan/ March 5, 2024/ Agile/ 0 comments

Are you using Monte Carlo analysis to project deliverables? At its core, forecasting represents a sophisticated optimization challenge, one that seeks to minimize schedule subject to budgetary constraints. This equation is subject to myriad of variables including understanding and prioritization of work, order of execution, allocation of skilled personnel, and the ever present spectre of risks. Agile, while attempting to be nimble, often side-steps the intricate dance of optimization in favour of adaptability and speed. Practiced well, organizations have benefited strategically from this speed and adaptability as is evidenced by modern technology organizations. Enterprise ITs, however, in an attempt to reinvent themselves are failing miserably at becoming good at either.

The agile mindset – what does it mean?

Charan/ July 26, 2016/ Agile

“Developing a product takes time. The only way to do it is to experiment. Build a prototype or a sample and show it around. Let people kick the tires, touch it, feel it. Let them get a taste of the product. Get their feedback and incorporate it into the next prototype you build. Do it fast.” Sounds like something a

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The value of value stream mapping in software engineering

Charan/ March 15, 2015/ Agile

“We are Agile. We don’t need to follow a process”, declared Chris. Tina was aghast. “How do you think we deliver solutions, Chris?” “What do you mean? We do Agile. We follow Scrum. We don’t follow processes like the Waterfall guys do.  We neither need a whole lot of planning nor documentation. We don’t do BDUF (big design upfront). We love

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Journey to becoming a lean & agile family

Charan/ February 18, 2015/ Agile

Having been a student of Lean and Agile for a number of years now, we started adopting it in bits and pieces within our family. Here’s some examples of lean and agile in action in our personal lives.

Kanban your way to breakthrough profitability

Charan/ July 19, 2014/ Agile

Kanbans are an unbelievably simple way to improve throughput. It does not require you to begin with significant change which most process improvement initiatives do. It helps you experiment within your span of control and learn through those simple non-threatening experiments.

Transforming from waterfall to agile

Charan/ January 12, 2013/ Agile

Introducing agility into traditional systems development processes is never easy. Firstly, you have got to want to change. Secondly, you need to have a vision of what to change to. Finally, you need the tenacity to forge ahead in the face of stiff resistance. It is usually the third that is the most difficult journey to undertake. The hardest part

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The power of pull

Charan/ August 13, 2012/ Agile

Joe sighed and returned to his desk. He had been waiting for Jane to provide him with information for the last two days. If Jane could only take a few hours to do it, he could get on with his work and check it off his list. Instead he would now have to wait for a week before Jane can

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Scope creep? Bring it on

Charan/ May 21, 2012/ Agile

Ask any project manager the reasons why projects fail and one of the reasons cited will definitely be scope creep. But is scope creep really that bad? I don’t think so. Your view of the scope creep will depend on how you manage projects. You can manage projects as a contract or you can collaborate. I think there will be

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You’ve got more capacity than you think

Charan/ May 11, 2012/ Agile

In the current era of economic uncertainty, there is no dearth of gloom and doom news. Europe, Asia, the Americas all have fallen like dominoes to the credit crisis of 2008. Austerity measures have been put in place in a number of countries. Economies are spiraling downward. There is talk of the breakup of the Eurozone with Greece being the

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Implement Kanban: Implement virtuous cycle of ongoing improvement

Charan/ February 19, 2012/ Agile

The hardest thing about implementing the Kanban is the paradigm shift in policies it leads to. “How can just visualizing work and limiting work improve throughput?” It’s so counter-intuitive. However, the very act of visualizing and limiting work highlights bottlenecks as they appear, giving you a chance to fix things before they become big issues. Implementing Kanban enterprise-wide, however, will

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Kanban saves the day

Charan/ December 5, 2011/ Agile

I was brought in to deliver a project on-time with less than 2 months remaining. While the project scope and deliverables were clear, getting to the solution was not. R&D was required to get some of the features delivered and that was expected to take up a significant amount of time. The team was cross functional and dispersed – from

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No such thing as multitasking

Charan/ August 31, 2011/ Agile

It was a perfect spring evening. Dinner was over, dishes done and the daughter tucked in for the night. A conversation with the wife ensues. Then the phone rings. Turns out the caller had the very answer we needed to put us out of our long distance calling miseries.  Grrr… Looking to resume the conversation after hanging up nosily we

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Lean software development using Kanban

Charan/ January 13, 2011/ Agile

Kanban is a Japanese term that literally means “signboard”. in its strictest sense, it is essentially a scheduling system that “signals” what to produce, when to produce and how much to produce. As you will see, Kanban is a pull system. Work gets pulled by the people who actually do the work based on their availability. Kanban can lay over your existing process and asks you to follow just three basic principles:
Visualize your workflow, limit your work in progress, and only start new work when you have finished some existing work.