A complex production process requires a mixture of leadership, governance and management. In this article, we’ll discuss a tiered meetings structure that can effectively enable this. Empowerment, escalation paths, accountability and responsibility are included as some key ingredients. We’ll start with the following diagram:
In reviewing several previous articles in this article series, it’s apparent there is much in common with product development, project management and process improvement.
Let’s look at a brief list that considers a structured approach vs. unstructured
While this list is pretty “high-level” it reveals the importance of project leadership, governance and management. A structured approach (for example a phase-gate structure, DMAIC or agile/scrum) enables management and planning, which enables governance and governance enables leadership.
Some structured approaches may be more suitable than others depending on the type of project. However, any structure (with leadership, governance and management in mind) is probably better than none.
Our previous article compared agile/scrum with lean/kaizen and revealed several similar fundamentals that helped make each methodology easier to understand.
Since the objective of lean and agile is waste reduction, we also want to identify and eliminate various forms of waste.
In order to do this, first let’s consider our objective to manufacture hardware product, develop a hardware or digital product and/or execute a project:
Our previous article covered the benefits of comparing the DMAIC problem solving thought process with project management. The key takeaway was DMAIC can be more effectively executed using “measure & plan” phase.
Now let’s compare and contrast agile/scrum with lean/kaizen. While agile is primarily used in software development, there are many valid comparisons. By making this comparison, those familiar with kaizen will improve their understanding of agile and vice-versa. Also we’ll cover key success factors that are applicable to both.
Our previous article covered the benefits of comparing waterfall with agile, emphasizing the benefit of planning the agile process and product backlog content. In this article we’ll compare the Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve and Control (DMAIC) thought process, with a project management thought process.
DMAIC is a problem-solving thought process applies critical thinking to ensure robust problem solving. (See our previous article on the subject here.) DMAIC is not necessarily a process by which projects are managed, however. Recall the high-level project management process as follows: