Understanding the true definition of Lean Agility is more critical today than ever before. This is due to obstacles such as mandatory remote environments, impacts from a sudden pandemic, and a host of other factors. For the sake of clarity, let’s explore some of the differences in the way that Lean-Agile is different for the Enterprise than for Delivery/Project Management.

Difference #1:  Identify Value

The value in the Delivery/Project world is highly focused on what will help a customer today. Enterprise Agility creates a focus on the value of work at a higher level – considering things like total cost of ownership and long-term strategy. With Enterprise Agility, there needs to be a balance between what is valuable to the Customer, the Business, and Stakeholders. This balance is much more difficult than identifying what the value is direct to a paying customer because there are so many more “voices” of the customer.

Customer examples include: 

  • Shareholders
  • Executive Stakeholders
  • Internal Employees
  • Different functional groups/areas
  • Product Managers/Delivery teams

Difference #2:  Mapping the Value Stream

After identifying the Customer, Business, and Stakeholder value, the organizational structure and culture can begin to take shape. This starts with Value Stream Mapping for both external and internal customers. Using this Value Stream Mapping exercise, the organization can begin to align the Organizational or Business Capabilities (cross-functional people, processes, and tools), needed to meet the desired value and outcome.

Difference #3:  Create Flow

Flow comes from Systems thinking and defines a continuous or sustainable stream of work or demand. Agility Program Management practices focus on the efficient flow of work from strategic planning to completion. However, the Lean-Agile approach to Business Agility focuses on the flow determined by the demand of both the internal and external customer. Organizational Structure, Culture, and Capabilities are all part of the enterprise system and affect the flow at this level.

Difference #4:  Establish Pull

For manufacturing firms, pull is just-in-time order fulfillment which reduces waste. Pull when combined with Agility for the development of innovative products and services has more to do with the capacity to meet the demand. In other words, teams pull work from the flow based upon appropriate prioritization and sequencing according to their available capacity. This gives the organization a clear picture of its true capacity.

Difference #5:  Seek Perfection

Seeking perfection requires continuous improvement that stems from the cultural fabric of an organization. Continuous Improvement should be enabled to get the true benefits. The entire organization needs to apply perfection, rather than only one area.

By applying principles of Lean to your Business Agility Transformation, your organization will fully benefit from transformation. The journey to Enterprise Transformation requires a strategic partner. Trissential has the skills and capabilities to help you on your journey. Learn more about our Enterprise Agility services here.