During an important tournament, Chess Players put themselves in a state of flow — a hyper-focused state of mind… where time, noise, and distractions seem to disappear… a state of hyper-creativity — necessary to achieve a certain objective. They are ‘In The Zone’!
Likewise, we, The Knowledge Workers of ‘The Factory’, could use such state of flow… in-the-zone moment… to multiply our productivity… and achieve and deliver Value in the least sustainable Lead Time.
Accelerate Flow with multiple and sustained states of flow.
This concept in action… in ‘The Factory’ setting:
1) Developer hours:
Some Agile Teams I know have ‘Developer Hours’ — 3 hours of uninterrupted development hours.
Before this, all the Agile Team members were interrupted about everything, everywhere, all at once… and nothing gets done.
Today, they have that ‘sacred time’ — to put themselves in a sustained and optimized state of flow — necessary to get things done.
2) Limit WIP and Context Switching:
Setting WIP (Work In Process) limit to manageable level vis-a-vis optimum Throughput could help get into a state of flow. With WIP limit in place, context switching is less compared to unwieldy, unbridled, unlimited WIP.
Context switching interrupts a state of flow.
Once a state of flow is interrupted, it will take time to get it back. Delay happens. Delay is a waste. This decelerates the flow of Value.
3) Apply the buffet rule: ‘Take all you can but eat all you take’. This can help with WIP limit.
Scrum master/Team Coach to protect the Agile Team from noise (interruptions) and going over their capacity (WIP is limited — must not exceed capacity). This can help the Agile Team attain and sustain a state of flow.
State of flow … hyper-focused… hyper-creativity… a sustained… optimized … in-the-zone moment … is a flow accelerator.