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Henrik Kniberg: Agile at home

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Henrik Kniberg: Agile at home

  1. 1. Agile @ Home Agile Eastern Europe keynote Keynote 2012-10-06 (annotated slides) Henrik Kniberg Agile/Lean coach
  2. 2. Let me show you how some of the ideas from Agile and Lean software development can be used in a different context: At Home! We have 4 small children, age 1-8. Needless to say, that can get complicated sometimes. Over the years, we’ve found that many of the practices and ideas from the Agile/Lean toolkit can really improve life at home! Here are some examples of things that have worked particularly well. Henrik Kniberg 2
  3. 3. Definition Travel Agile of Done Spike party Kitchen planning WIP Limit Clothes WIP Limit Homework Kitchen Burnup Value Stream chart Map BigFamilyTrip Kanban board 3
  4. 4. This is my focus board. Some would call it a Personal Kanban system. The stickies on the bottom half are independent actions, such as ”buy a new shaver” or ”call client X” The index cards on the top half are ”projects”, with stickies showing the next 1-2 actions for that project. Let’s look closer... Henrik Kniberg 4
  5. 5. For example preparing this talk Or writing a foreword to someone’s book Or playing with my band at a wedding Some actions have deadlines The goal is to focus on at most 1 or 2 projects at a time, and minimize multitasking.* Henrik Kniberg *Multitasking sucks. See 5
  6. 6. This part of the board is for practing new I try to practice one habits new habit at a time for several weeks... ... until it becomes, well, a habit! Right now I’m trying to learn to start each day by finishing the most important thing for that day, BEFORE opening the inbox and getting sucked into the void. Henrik Kniberg 6
  7. 7. We use focus boards for family stuff too. Here is a party that we were preparing. 3 sections on the left refrigerator door ”Must be done”, ”Should be done”, ”Bonus stuff” As things get done, we move the notes to the other refrigerator door. The ”Done Door” so to speak... Here is when we were preparing for Big Christmas Invasion with lots of friends and family staying for several days. Henrik Kniberg This board even had a time 7 plan!
  8. 8. This board was for a BBQ party a few years ago. Guests would pair up with somebody they don’t know too well, grab a card, and get going! I know. But seriously, guests actually like to help :o) To our surprise, small kids (even 3 year olds!) quickly decoded our system and hacked it! ”Hey, things that go on the board actually Happen!” ”We can make grownups Do Things!” So... ice-cream cards starting appearing on the board... Henrik Kniberg 8
  9. 9. So now we use this quite often :o) As usual, things that are Here the kids are planning Done go on the right and preparing a birthday refrigerator door party Each stickynote is a ”feature” of the party. When time started running out, the kids automatically started descoping. Imagine if all project Henrik Kniberg ”What’s more important, balloons, or managers could learn to 9 cake? We won’t have time to finish do that to! :o) both!”.
  10. 10. Once Dave (7 yrs at the time) was behind on his He found it hard to stay homework, and had quite a focused and motivated few pages to do Henrik Kniberg 10
  11. 11. So I showed him how to create a burnup chart. Here’s the page numbers he had to finish This is the ”finish line”. If he crosses this before bedtime, the remaining time is play-time! ”Every 5 minutes or so, check This is the ”timebox” – bed time the time and put and write X for at 8pm the page number that you are working on” After 15 minutes he noticed something upsetting: ”Time Keeps Going even when I’m Not Focusing!” Here’s the timeline. Each number is a 5 minute interval (big hand of the clock) Henrik Kniberg 11
  12. 12. Henrik Kniberg 12
  13. 13. The chart helped him get back into focus, without me having to nag or remind him. A clear and obvious visualization, showing the benefit of focusing. Even project managers can get it :o) Henrik Kniberg 13
  14. 14. He finished in record time, and had time to play! However, we should have made sure testing & validation was included in Definition of Done, since there were some ”defects”... oh well, next time :o) Sometimes when he has very much homework to do, he says ”Daddy, I’d like to create one of those graph thingies again, because I want to get my homework done quickly!” Henrik Kniberg 14
  15. 15. We recently came back from a BigFamilyTrip – a 6 month trip that took us through 8 countries. A trip like that takes quite some planning and preparation. We used this planning board for the 8 months or so we had to prepare for the trip. Very useful. Henrik Kniberg 15
  16. 16. We decided on a departure date (Oct 1) from the very beginning, just to make sure the trip happens. Timeline, with red arrow that moves. Reminds us that time keeps going. Clearly defined Yellow stickies show when we purpose of the trip The columns are ”To do”, ”Next”, ”Ongoing”, and plan to be in which country ”Done!” The three horizontal swimlanes are ”Must do”, ”Should do”, and ”Bonus stuff” Dreams & visions. We downloaded some inspiring pictures from Google images, to exemplify the type of things we were hoping to experience during the trip. Henrik Kniberg 16
  17. 17. We did a ”spike” (practice run), a 4 day trip to London. Our hope was that, anything that can go wrong, will go wrong on this trip. we can learn from it and avoid problems during the Big trip. Henrik Kniberg 17
  18. 18. We learned what kind of stuff to pack. And we learned that the kids (even Emma, 3 yrs) can carry their own stuff. We learned that Oh, and we had fun too :o) our baby carriage sucked and needed to be replaced (broke after 1 check-in!). And more! Henrik Kniberg 18
  19. 19. After coming we could already cross some things off the Dream Gallery (such as the double decker bus)... Henrik Kniberg 19
  20. 20. ... and we could turn our learnings into concrete actions (such as ”buy a better baby carriage”). Henrik Kniberg 20
  21. 21. Oct 1 – Off we went! Hej då, vi ses i vår! Följ med på resebloggen: Hälsningar Henrik & Sia & David & Jenny & Emma & Peter Japan Västindien Peru Nya Zealand Henrik Kniberg 21
  22. 22. We had an awesome trip! Read more The long-lived planning board and on, the 4 day London ”spike” really we wrote down we we’ve learned about helped us set the trip up for success. travelling with kids. 22
  23. 23. When we got home, 6 months later, we were surprised at how quickly the They wanted to pull out all the toys house got completely messed up, and clothes they had missed especially the kids’ rooms. Just about impossible for them to take responsibility for their own stuff. It was just too much. Henrik Kniberg 23
  24. 24. We didn’t really have that problem during the trip. ... because look: the kids could only fit so much stuff in their bags. And they had to carry their own stuff! There’s a term for that in the lean community: A ”WIP Limit” (work-in-progress limit). WIP limits stop things from getting out of hand! Henrik Kniberg 24
  25. 25. At home there were no WIP limits. So we decided to change that. The drawers + the closet = The WIP limit. You can only keep as many clothes as you can fit there. And there should be extra slack in each drawer, it should not be crammed. Henrik Kniberg 25
  26. 26. To implement this, they put all their clothes in one place (a ”temporary inbox” you might say) Henrik Kniberg 26
  27. 27. I handed them one item at a time and asked ”In or Out?” ”In” means: decide where that particular thing lives, and put it there now. Slack rule: no drawer is allowed to be crammed full ”Out” means: throw it in the box (to be sold or given away or trashed at a later time). I was impressed by how much stuff the kids were willing to do away with (many boxes! let us know if you need anything!) Henrik Kniberg 27
  28. 28. Voila! Tidy room! And, more importantly, a room that has few enough things, so the kids can realistically take responsibility for keeping it tidy. Henrik Kniberg 28
  29. 29. We had the same problem in the kitchen It was a mystery! Why were we spending so much time in the kitchen, cleaning dishes, filling and emptying the dishwasher, etc? Felt like hours every day. Why didn’t we have this problem while travelling? Heck, we didn’t even have washing machines while travelling! Answer: WIP limits! In our rental houses and apartments, there were only a few plates and utensils, barely enough for everyone in the family. So we decided try WIP limits in our kitchen at home. Henrik Kniberg 29
  30. 30. A quick calculation revealed that each one of us uses about 8 things per meal (plates, utensils, cups, etc). 8 With 3 meals per day, that is about 24 things. 8 8
  31. 31. With 6 people in the family, plus some shared stuff like pots, that adds 8 8 8 up to over 160 things per day! 16 8 8 8 8 160+ 8 8 8 8 8 160+ things to take out, wash up, and put back in again. That’s a lot! 8 8 8 8 8 8
  32. 32. If we instead Limit WIP to one ”set” per person (one of each type of 8 thing, total of 8 things)... 16 8 And each person washes their own stuff.... 8 8 8 (except Peter, he’s only 1 yr old...). 8
  33. 33. Here’s what we did Henrik Kniberg 33
  34. 34. Each person has their own ”set” of 8 things, in a dedicated place in the drying tray. Henrik Kniberg 34
  35. 35. ”Definition of Done” for a A simple rule that even a meal is when your set of 3 year-old can learn easily things are back in it’s place, clean. If you forget to wash your stuff then, well, you’ll regret it next ... because your plate will mealtime. be icky and hard-to- Henrik Kniberg clean :o) Effective feedback loops 35 beat nagging any day :o)
  36. 36. The new system worked surprisingly well! Why? 1-2 Because with the old system, a days! single item, such as a cup, would take up to 2 days (or longer!) to make it out and back into the cupboard. With 160+ items in play, each taking 2 days or so to pass through the kitchen... well, no wonder the kitchen was often a mess! 1 Mon 7:00 3 4 Mon 11:00 Mon 22:00 2 Tue 22:00 Typically we’d take out the old batch and insert the next batch in the evening. ...because filling/emptying dishwashing machines is boring, so we resisted it ’till the last responsible moment. Henrik Kniberg 36
  37. 37. With the new system, we skip the cupboard Instead, everything lives in the drying tray, comes out for the meal, and is back <1 in the drying traywithin an hour! hour! The kitchen mess never has time to 1 Mån kl 7:00 build up! Mån kl 7:30 2 ... and we skip the dishwasher! Ironic huh? Henrik Kniberg 37
  38. 38. The new system works great! The system is a bit brittle though. We spend MUCH less time doing dishes It breaks down when we have guests coming over, for And the kitchen is example. for the most part nice and tidy In those cases we temporarily revert to the old system, with dishwashing machine and batching. But the new limited-WIP system has become our ”default system”, for everyday use. Henrik Kniberg 38
  39. 39. Definition Travel Agile of Done Spike party Kitchen planning WIP Limit Clothes WIP Limit Homework Kitchen Burnup Value Stream chart Map BigFamilyTrip Kanban board 39