Evolving Web

Finding Human Space

Evolving Web

The world is filled with different people. Wonderful people. Interesting people. I have sat on hilltops in Capetown, drinking wine and eating kudu carpaccio. I’ve felt the random rush of people, all moving on different missions, in Shinjuku.

2018 204

Curbing Crap From Your Mental Diet

Evolving Web

It takes 72 hours to fix your feed. Your Facebook feed feeds your brain. It can feed it with positive messages or real world things. Or it can act like Cable News and feed you fear of the “other”. So, stop making Facebook your amplified CNN or Fox News. Stop eating crap.

2018 173

Four Things to Remember When "Planning"

Evolving Web

In 1989 I received my degree in Urban Planning. I have studied how to make plans. In 2007 I received my certification to be part of the American Institute of Certified Planners. I have been recognized for making good plans.

2018 194

Losing Yourself in Awesome

Evolving Web

You can lose yourself in awesome. Awes ome itself is overload. boredom is seldom awesome. For the last 10 years, I've been traveling the world, working with all kinds of companies, eating great food, staying in (sometimes) posh hotels, speaking at conferences and it's been awesome.

2018 192

Focus and Finish

Evolving Web

Be like Mark: Ignore Facebook. Today I have three things to do: write this blog post, format a follow up package for our classes in Iowa last week, and get my cleaning to the cleaners so I have clothes for New York next week. Oh, and get a ticket to New York. four things.

2018 184

Depth in Progress: of Wine Snobs, Audiophiles, and Agilistas

Evolving Web

“Wine is to enjoy, not to judge.” ~ Hwi Woong Jeong (??) Wine Enthusiast. . The gentleman next to me took out his laptop and began typing, he had a large pile of wine labels and a notebook filled with wine notes. He began systematically copying them into his laptop. I figured he was a wine critic.

2012 196

Preparing for a whole lot of Kaizen

Evolving Web

The last few weeks have been busy. We’ve launched Kaizen Camp which is bustling with activity. We have three Kaizen Camps scheduled for New York, Los Angeles, and Boulder – with more on the way in Tel Aviv, Sydney, Melbourne, and Ho Chi Minh City.

2012 158

Putting Some Lean Planning in Lean Startup

Evolving Web

This was originally an answer I posted in a Quora group, but I thought I would repost it here with some edits. Read the original, in context, here. After working with and owning several startups, it is clear that startup owners regularly overload themselves with work. It’s part of the startup mythos.

2012 158

Innovation for Erratic Meatbags

Evolving Web

Herbert Hoover and Ayn Rand tell us of the rugged individualist. More or less, its a western ideal. We question convention - even conventions WE helped create. We have free will. We make decisions and act accordingly. In our rational hearts, we make only appropriate, moral, and ethical decisions.

On Being Framed: The Framing Effect

Evolving Web

In Freakonomics , Steven Levit tells a story of a day care center in Israel that was tired of parents being late to pick up their kids. So, they turned to a market solution: they charged a penalty fee if you were late to pick up your kids.

2011 169

Reading is (Still) Fundamental

Evolving Web

recently tweeted this after mulling over the differences I’ve seen while working with various clients. Some of them have practically been begging people to slow down, finish less with higher quality, and to take time out to read.

2012 158

Why Systems Thinking is Awesome and a Trap in Five Quotes: Post 1: There Is No Spoon

Evolving Web

A few weeks ago, I awoke to a string of tweets by people on the other side of the world discussing what I would say about Systems Thinking’s limitations. Systems thinking is a major tool in my toolkit when working with teams and organizations.

2011 158

Personal Kanban Wins the Shingo Prize

Evolving Web

Personal Kanban won a Shingo Prize for Operational Excellence this year. This is the highest honor in Lean and we share the award with some pretty august company. This award is humbling.

2013 130

Starting 2013

Evolving Web

It’s been awhile since I’ve blogged here on Evolving Web. This is becoming a personal blog for someone who has invested a lot of his “person” in his work as of late. I’m vowing to change that this year and this post is a start. All my life, I’ve wanted to be a writer.

2013 130

Bigger Ears Make You Dumbo

Evolving Web

Consider how the movement of a meme across the social media landscape spreads what looks good on the surface, but is fetid logic underneath. A few months back I spoke at Social Media Breakfast, Seattle about Social Media, Lean and the CIA.

2010 182

Kaizen Camp: Seattle 2012

Evolving Web

Following last year’s excellent “Seattle Lean Camp ,” we are now nearing Kaizen Camp: Seattle 2012. (We We did have a name change, so as not to confuse us with another set of camps with the same name.) Kaizen Camp is July 24-25, again at the beautiful Center for Urban Horticulture.

2012 141

Money and Good Copy

Evolving Web

This song was recorded in 1985, it was likely the 20th version of the song. It’s not our best song, but it is my favorite. Corey Smith, David Fisher, and myself in Corey’s living room. We all played just about everything on it. Yes, those are my vocals, with Dave doing rap and backup.

2012 141

Long Live the Community

Evolving Web

There’s change in the wind and I like it. The Lean Software and Systems Consortium (LSSC) has evolved to the Lean Systems Society (LSS). I was never a member of LSSC, but I am a founding fellow of LSS. LSSC was a very necessary institution to begin talking about Lean in software development.

2012 141

Id Rather Be A Hammer Than A Nail or Nails Come in Boxes

Evolving Web

To a man with a hammer, everything looks like a nail. Mark Twain If you only have a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail. Abraham Maslow Some quotes become lore. Some quotes become cliché. These quotes are a warning we all ignore, and may well be another cognitive bias.

2011 151

You Mean I Cant Even Estimate? The Planning Fallacy in Action

Evolving Web

Hofstadter's Law: It always takes longer than you expect, even when you take into account Hofstadter's Law. We like to estimate things. “I’ll I’ll be there in 5 minutes!" “I I will have that report to you in an hour!” “We We can do the entire project in 24 days!”.

2011 151

Territory Destroys ThoughtAn Open Letter to Jabe Bloom

Evolving Web

Dear Jabe It strikes me that we humans often like to think. Yet we are still territorial creatures. Therefore when we invent anything, we wish to guard that thing. We are protectors of our territory. Even when there clearly is neither threat nor territory.

2012 141

Speaking from Power in an Uncertain WorldCollaberwocky Episode 3

Evolving Web

Are you a manager trying to get by in a flat or agile company? Do you find the role of manager repeatedly maligned? This is more than just “It’s lonely in the middle.” There are significant positive shifts in making the workplace more productive, efficient and effective.

2012 141

Decentralization is Freedom - Social Media Principle #4

Evolving Web

This post is fourth in a series of my Social Media Principles. The base post is 10 Social Media Principles. Decentralization is freedom – Decentralized power structures spur creativity, growth, and innovation.

What Does Control Really Mean?

Evolving Web

We say that kanban is a visual control , but we also eschew external control (rules) being placed on us by others. So what does control really mean? We when we look at it, we have a lot of depth here. (1) 1) Like a dial – a controller. We can use our kanban as a controller for our work.

2012 130

Kaizen Camp: Seattle 2012

Evolving Web

Following last year’s excellent “Seattle Lean Camp ”, we are now nearing Kaizen Camp: Seattle 2012. (We We did have a name change, so as not to confuse us with another set of camps with the same name.) This year, Kaizen Camp is the July 24-25.

2012 130

Flip My Switch: Standard Work or Soul Crushing Exactness

Evolving Web

In Lean there is a concept known as “standard work”. A game around standard work is to define the elements of work to a point that they are standardized and predictable.

2011 141

One Days Idea is Another Days Waste

Evolving Web

On my travels through startups and the corporate world I see small to gross acts of negligence. They usually come in the wrapper of something like, “because that’s our process.” Metrics are gathered for the sake of reports no one acts on. Information is collected to feed otherwise ignored databases.

2012 130

The Case of Gemba v. Semmelweis

Evolving Web

The Gemba is where it all happens. It’s the factory floor, the crime scene, ground zero. It’s where the evidence is, the witnesses are, and the location to find clarity. In lean we are told to “Go to the Gemba” – to walk the floor, talk to the people, and make the change happen.

2011 141

An Open Letter to Hoteliers Worldwide

Evolving Web

Hoteliers: Please. Help me understand your complete lack of industry standards. I am constantly amazed by how hotels worldwide posses an uncanny ability to get some things astoundingly perfect while getting other things egregiously wrong. Now I know that I’m not alone in my thinking here, so I’m offering some suggestions for you to consider. They’re not really amenities I’m looking for, just some standardized features to make your guests lives away from home a tad less aggravating.

Open 159

Collaboration and Clarity Make Us Greater than the Sum of Our Parts

Evolving Web

A year-end retrospective. Imagine Yo-Yo Ma performing a solo. Now imagine him performing a duet with Hai-Ye Ni. Now imagine him performing the duet on his own. First he’ll play his part, then he’ll play hers. Sure it’ll take twice as long … but he’ll get there. Eventually.

2009 169

Failure is an Option-Collaberwocky Episode 4

Evolving Web

The Lean Startup movement has focused considerable energy in the message that we learn from failures. Small, easily recoverable, failures can be invaluable in the success of a company. However, many ignore failure and focus on success.

2012 130

The Language of ManagementCollaberwocky Episode 2

Evolving Web

In this episode of Collaberwocky, Jabe Bloom, Corey Ladas and I discuss “The Language of Management.”. It seems that different rungs of the corporate ladder come with different perspectives. None are complete and all have their own biases and areas of focus.

Introducing Collaberwocky Collaboration Conversations

Evolving Web

For years I have been trying to get myself to do an interview show. There was one problem – interviews are not very collaborative. After doing Lean Coffees for a few years and hosting Lean Camp Seattle last year, it became clear to me that conversation creates information – and that was compelling.

Just Released: Why Plans Fail: Cognitive Bias, Decision Making, and Your Business.

Evolving Web

A few months ago, I wrote a series of posts in this blog about cognitive bias. Those became the pre-writing for this short ebook: Why Plans Fail. It’s $2.99, or free if you have Amazon Prime.

2012 130

Why Project Managers Fail

Evolving Web

I’ve managed a lot of projects. I tried to count them – I can’t. As I’ve progressed in my career, I’ve embraced a succession of methodologies that cumulatively represent a rather predictable evolution away from zero sum game management towards non-zero sum game management. What does this mean?

Why Systems Thinking is Awesome and a Trap: Quote 5-Nancy: They wouldnt send us any money! They said wed spend it on DRUGS! Sid: We would!

Evolving Web

Quote 5: Nancy: They wouldn’t send us any money! They said we’d spend it on DRUGS! Sid: We would! Before Gary Oldman was an arch villain all the time, he played Sid Vicious in Sid and Nancy - a roll where he had to lose so much weight that he was hospitalized.

2011 130

Systems Thinking is Awesome and a Trap Quote Series: Quote 4-Well, Clarise, have the lambs stopped screaming?

Evolving Web

A good story, especially one that strikes home, can be particularly disarming. You are drawn into it. You feel its inherent truth. A truth that may or may not be real. But we feel it is real and we follow it quickly and with abandon.

2011 130

Systems Thinking is Awesome and a Trap Series: Quote #3I Was Thrown Out of NYU

Evolving Web

Quote #3 - I was thrown out of N.Y.U. my freshman year for cheating on my metaphysics final, you know. I looked within the soul of the boy sitting next to me.

2011 130

Systems Thinking Is Awesome and a Trap Series: Quote #2Remember Your Failure In The Cave

Evolving Web

(This is part 2 of a 5 part series that starts here ) So, it’s an average day on Dagobah, rainy, hot, humid. Luke Skywalker has just finished some fitness exercises with Yoda and they come across a cave. It creeps Luke out and Yoda says, in essence, “Dude, skip the cave.”

2011 130

Personal Kanban and Existential Overhead

Evolving Web

Post 14 of the Personal Kanban series. Existential Overhead - the cost in distraction and stress of uncompleted tasks. A few years back I started shopping around the concept of existential overhead. The concept is fairly straightforward. There simply is no such thing as out of sight, out of mind.