Lean is often regarded as simply targeting cost reduction through the elimination of waste. A quick-win approach may focus on eradicating the prime culprits in a piecemeal fashion at the tactical or, often, operational level. However, this was not the original intent and the need to regain a more strategic perspective seems obvious. For a more impactful and sustainable result a broader systems thinking approach should be adopted; one that integrates Lean principles with those of project, program and change management.

“Improvement usually means doing something that we have never done before.” – Shiego Shingo

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AuthorTrevor Lindars
CategoriesInnovation
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Organizations are complex systems that encapsulate interactions between people, processes and enabling infrastructure. It might seem reasonable, therefore, to manage innovation within organisations using some of the key principles that emerge from systems thinking and other disciplines associated with multi-disciplinary design. However, this is not as commonplace as might be expected. I suggest that integrating systems thinking with other change and project management techniques is key to ensuring a well-rounded approach that covers all the bases critical to successful innovation.

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AuthorTrevor Lindars
CategoriesInnovation

I was recently involved in a research project looking at complexity in project/program management. I will briefly share my views on the subject here.

For me, complexity is a function of having many elements interacting in a multitude of ways with the level of complexity increasing exponentially with increases in either factor.  By elements, I am referring to the full range of contributors – technology, people, information, processes and other enablers (eg finance).

Some elements that come to mind as especially important contributors to complexity in this context are: diverse stakeholder interests, ambiguity in objectives, geographically dispersed locations (incl. timezones, regulations etc), cultural/linguistic differences, novel technologies or solution architectures, the degree to which legacy systems are being modified or replaced, deployment scope (incl. volume and locations),

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AuthorTrevor Lindars
CategoriesInnovation

The risk associated with developing and deploying integrated systems has many dimensions – complexity, novelty, speed, technology, social, political and others. The greater the risk the greater the need for some form of overarching governance and the adoption of risk mitigating approaches.

High levels of complexity are best addressed using a systems approach to compartmentalise the requirement and develop a modular solution architecture that minimises and clearly defines interdependencies.

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Posted
AuthorTrevor Lindars
CategoriesInnovation