Agile & Lean Coffee – GetKanban

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On the 9th of February 2015 I went to the Agile & Lean Coffee Vienna (Limited WIP Society) organised by LEANability and hosted by Austrian Lotteries. This time the theme was to play a board game – namely a round of getKanban. Around 20 people showed up with a complete diverse background ranging from Product Owners, Project Managers, Test Managers and Testers, Developers to people seeking new opportunities.

Although I have got some practical experience with Kanban I have never played the boardgame getKanban before. First of all we formed three groups and each group had a different goal. The goal of the first group was to have short cycle times. The second group had to make a lot of money and the goal of the third group was to have a steady cycle time. Each member of a group takes on a different role e.g. Project Management, Finance, Controlling etc. The idea behind this roles is to gather data and come up with diagrams such as a cumulative flow diagram of work in progress, a histogram of the cycle time etc. to understand the behaviour of the system and actions we take on the system.

I am not going into any more detail about the game here as it would take too long.

All I can say is that it is a lot of fun to play the game as well as a lot of insights into how Kanban works. It clearly shows the meaning of Pull vs. Push, prioritizing work and of course how to work collaboratively.

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