Lean Awareness in Driving
Transforming to Agile and Lean is far beyond changes in methods and processes. It’s equally, if not more, about changes in behavior and culture. A organizational change or process change is not enough, changes in our self as individuals needs to happen sooner or later. The culture is built on behavior by individuals.
Well, have you transformed in to a Lean behaving person?
Consider yourself as driver in one of the four cars A-D:
You are driving exactly as the speed-limit prescribes. No matter if it would be possible and safe to go much faster – you stick to the plan (speed limit). You are still in command and control, a sense and adapt lean person will try to run faster as long it’s not jeopardize safety(or risking a too expensive fine).
You try to use your engine’s power and the car’s brake capabilities as much as possible. Your go as fast as possible in every second, you try to stick as close as possible to the bumper of the car in front of you. You will have the highest top speed (very occasionally) of all cars at the road. This feels very active and requires you to be on your toes and take active operative decisions every second. You are optimizing on resource usage. You believe pushing the most out of the engine and your brakes is equal to get to your destination as fast as possible. You are one of those that creates congestion and queues out of nothing. The risk to make the system collapse for hours due to car crashes is substantial increased .
You avoid to use the breaks. You try to push the engine just enough to leave room between you and the car in front of you so you don’t need to hit the break on the complete journey. Your car is going roughly at the same speed all the way. If the car in front of you keeps the limit, that will be your speed as well. If the car in front of you goes faster – you will. You will keep a distance just to even out the changes in speed the car in front of you might have. You know that the fastest way to get to the destination is not about speed it’s about not to break and keep all cars around you in a steady flow. You got it!
You just have to rush and overtake C so you can get to the queue a bit earlier and by that gain exactly one position in the queue. You feel the urge to constantly change lanes in queues because the other one seems to go just a bit faster. Too bad all cars going to arrive later to their destinations due to traffic jams and accidents.You are sub-optimizing your own speed at expense of others. The overtake will force others to break, it builds queues, jams and accidents. All cars, including yours, will go slower (but you will arrive ahead of that lazy D-driver). Changing lanes (like moving work from one queue to another) will only increase the queuing time.