Why Limit Work In Process (WIP)

Day 139.

Multitasking is a fallacy! Your brain is actually switching from one task to another task. It is called context switching.

A large batch of ‘work in process’ (WIP) —- you are working in one large batch of items — slows you down. Value delivery time gets longer. Large batches — not cool; you want small batches!

Your average lead time (time between the initiation and completion of a production process) will go up with WIP going up. Too much ‘ball in the air’ so to speak.

You want to increase your average lead time?

You can… by decreasing your average WIP… or … increasing your average throughput (Throughput is the amount of a product or service that a company can produce and deliver to a client within a specified period of time).

Most ‘crazy’ managers ask employees to work more hours to increase their throughput.

Most ‘sane’ managers prefer lowering the average WIP.

Which manager are you?

Remember: over utilization of resources is not lean… not cool ! Lean Agile knowledge work is continuous… like a never ending marathon… need a sustainable pace … need to rest… need slack to reflect and innovate… escape the tyranny of the urgent.

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