The Lean IT Field Guide
A Roadmap for Your Transformation
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How many IT books have you read that are long on theory and short on practical application? They are interesting, but not very impactful. They provide a framework from which to think and understand, but lack a process from which to act. Addressing this urgent need for the IT community, The Lean IT Field Guide explains how to initiate, execute, and sustain a lean IT transformation.
Illuminating a clear path to lean IT, the authors integrate more than two decades of combined experience to provide you with a proven method for creating and sustaining a true lean IT workplace. This field guide not only highlights the organizational techniques of more agile and lean processes, but also the leadership work required to help management adopt these new approaches.
Based on proven methods from different industries, including banking, manufacturing, insurance, food and beverage, and logistics, the book details a clear model that covers all the components you need to achieve and sustain a favorable work environment and culture in support of lean IT.
Filled with anecdotes and case studies from actual businesses, the book includes pictures, templates, and examples that illustrate the application of the lean methods discussed.
Table of Contents
Lean Primer for IT Professionals
The Lean IT Cosmos
Lean IT Frontier
The Transformation Framework
The Lean IT House
Let’s Get Started! Your Roadmap
The Importance of Purpose
Practice Makes Perfect
Management’s First Steps
Frontline Associates’ First Steps
Building a Purpose-Driven System
Day Zero Wrap-Up
The Paradox of Process
People and Process
What Is a Problem?
Who Wants to Be a Scientist?
Why Thinking Is Less Important Than Behavior!
Everything Is Visible
Making the Invisible Visible
The Visual Journey
Visual Management Wrap-Up
Why Management (Still) Matters
Lost in Translation
Leading with Respect
The Coach in You—A Reflective Journey
Sustain Your Progress
Building for the Long Term
The Five-Part Accountability System
The Importance of Strategic Alignment
Engineering Excellence in the Model Line
Making the Commitment to Excellence
Continue the Journey
Michael A. Orzen, MBA, has a consulting and coaching career spanning more than 20 years. He received the BA degree in economics from Stanford University and the MBA degree in finance and management from the University of Oregon. He has gathered a unique blend of lean, IT, finance, and operations experience, which he uses to coach organizations in their pursuit of enterprise excellence. His personable approach and people-first philosophy have inspired leaders and empowered workforces to successfully apply conscious awareness, lean, and enterprise excellence practices in many complex work environments.
He is the coauthor of the award-winning book, Lean IT—Enabling and Sustaining Your Lean Transformation (CRC Press, 2011), and recipient of the Shingo Research and Professional Publication Award. He holds degrees from Stanford University and the University of Oregon. Mike teaches with the Lean Enterprise Institute, the Shingo Institute, and The Ohio State University Fisher School of Business.
Thomas A. Paider, MBOE, is an IT executive for Nationwide, a Fortune 100 insurance and financial services company. He received his BS degree in business administration from Ohio Dominican University and his master’s degree in business operational excellence from the Ohio State University. His teams work across Nationwide to foster Lean thinking and improve software development capability. He is also a Lean coach in the Masters in Business Operational Excellence program at The Ohio State University.
Tom is the cofounder of the IT Leadership Network at the Center for Operational Excellence at The Ohio State University, a partnership between industry and academic leaders focused on helping member companies collaborate and sustain their Lean journeys. Tom has consulted with dozens of companies, ranging from startups to large enterprises, on their Lean transformations.
"The Lean IT Field Guide answers the fundamental questions posed by so many who read the books, attend the conferences and are inspired by others to transform their own team: Where do we begin? How do we get started? What should our first steps be? Authored by two experienced Sherpas, Tom Paider and Mike Orzen, the book will ensure you will never be alone on your path to truly great results."
—Rich Sheridan, CEO and Chief Storyteller, Menlo Innovations; Author of Joy, Inc. - How We Built a Workplace People Love
"The Lean IT Field Guide is a practical, principles-based, guide to enterprise transformation. Orzen and Paider have great experience in IT—and it shows in great examples that are genuine and really helpful. Their advice applies in any knowledge-work environment, IT or otherwise. This book is a must-read for anyone interested in durable, transformational change in the way their organization works.
—Peter Ward, Sr. Associate Dean, Fisher College of Business, The Ohio State University; Director of the Center for Operational Excellence
"I’m excited about this book because it fills in many of the gaps that we all wanted filled after reading Mike’s first book, Lean IT. It continues the journey of the principles and practices learned through decades of experience, as well as showing concrete patterns that can be applied to technology work.
Like Lean IT, this book focuses on technology value streams that enable the business. Even better, the lessons are equally relevant to any value stream, whether it’s service, manufacturing, healthcare, or other value streams that rely on technology."
—Gene Kim, Co-Author of The Phoenix Project and the upcoming DevOps Handbook
"This short, readable book is a triumph of clarity, dense with practical advice. There's simply no better work available to anyone looking to kick-start a sustainable lean IT transformation. It provides the necessary tools—and no more—illustrated with vivid, relevant examples, and ties them together into a coherent whole with the bare minimum of theory and exposition. Highly recommended."
—Jez Humble, Co-Author of Continuous Delivery; Vice President at Chef
"By clarifying the main definitions; specifying, step by step, the foundational management skills; and providing many examples distinguishing success from setback, Mike and Tom have written a savvy, smart, and mindful guide to your own lean IT transformation. ... a wonderfully written, lucid, succinct guide to what you need to know to succeed."
—Michael Ballé, Bestselling co-author of The Gold Mine trilogy; Three-Time Shingo Research Award Recipient