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Software development teams must change their approach, says Lean expert

 

Get the Agile method right

Press Release 20th April 2011

Hot on the heels of the release of the government’s ICT strategy (30 March), in which the government announced its plans for applying Lean and Agile methodologies, Lean expert Stephen Parry has called for software development teams to take a more ‘joined up’ approach to software delivery to avoid damaging the reputation of Lean and Agile.

With more and more software development companies adopting Agile methodologies (an approach to building software based on incremental developments and regular evaluation), Stephen is concerned that many organisations are merely ‘practising’ at being Agile and are ‘cherry picking’ the easier-to-implement or more attractive elements.

On top of that, says Stephen, these companies often see Agile as a stand-alone process and are separating Agile from its Lean roots.  And despite the fact that both Lean and Agile promote cross functional working, the various departments within these companies don’t know what each other are doing.

Stephen, who is ICT and Service strategic advisor to the Lean Enterprise Institute and CEO of business transformation company, See Business Differently, recently ran a seminar with Agile expert, Grant Rule, to address these very issues.

Entitled, ‘Creating an integrated ICT value stream using Lean and Agile thinking’, the seminar explored the nature and application of Lean and Agile in their truest forms and advocated an Agile software development process which is seamlessly integrated with the Lean support and Delivery process.  Failure to do this, it was said, causes havoc for the business and customers.

“Lean is based on the principle of creating true value for the customer and meeting his real, rather than perceived, needs,” said Stephen, “Without Lean delivery and Agile development, software development companies cannot hope to produce software that is completely client led and relevant to the fast changing IT market.

“Lean and Agile are completely compatible and should be the perfect marriage.  But a perfect marriage means working together in harmony – at the moment, companies are allowing fractured departments to create a fractured relationship between Lean and Agile, ushering the two towards divorce!”

Lean business consultants in Europe

ENDS

 

Notes to Editors

 

To interview Stephen Parry or for further information, please contact:

Michelle Drapeau, PR Executive, on +44 (0) 1525 237599

OR

Stephen Parry direct on +44 (0) 7838 114997

 

 

Facts about Stephen Parry

 

  • Stephen Parry is a leading expert in the fields of Lean organisational design and transformation and Lean leadership.
  • He is author of the book, “Sense and Respond: the journey to customer purpose”, which presents an approach to business based on Lean Service Principles.
  • Clients include SAP, BT, Local Government, police authorities, financial services, TNT.
  • Stephen speaks regularly at international events and respected business schools such as Cranfield School of Management and the Fisher Business School at Ohio University.  He is a Faculty Member of the USA Lean Enterprise Institute, visiting Fellow at the Professor Dan Jones Lean Enterprise Academy in the UK and a regular judge at the national business awards.
  • He has been interviewed on Radio 4 and featured in documentaries on BBC1 and Channel 4.

Consultants mis-selling ‘Lean’ business model, says expert

Press release: Consultants mis-selling ‘Lean’ business model, says expert

International expert on Lean Service Principles, Stephen Parry, has hit out at what he sees as mis-selling of the Lean business model to an unsuspecting business community.

At a joint seminar run for post-graduate business students by the Imperial College Business School and the Chartered Management Institute, Stephen called for an end to Lean misrepresentation and took the opportunity to present the Lean message to his audience in its true form.

Stephen, who is CEO of business transformation company See Business Differently and visiting fellow at the Lean Enterprise Academy UK, said, “My intention was to challenge the perception of Lean in the marketplace and educate our future business leaders in the true application of Lean.

“There are consultants selling Lean as simply a method of improving processes or achieving returns with the lowest possible resources, but this has never been the case.  Lean is nothing less than complete business transformation; like choosing a lifestyle choice for good health, rather than having a spot of liposuction.”

Lean was first presented 80 years ago as a model which changes the way businesses are designed and built in order to create real value for the customer while minimising costs and maximising profits.  But Stephen believes the idea was way ahead of its time and is the perfect model for 21st century businesses striving to respond to globalisation and the demand for individualisation.

“Consumers want a service which responds to their actual, rather than perceived needs.  Employees want to be able to respond appropriately to these needs by being a part of the day to day problem solving and decision making process,” said Stephen.   “Lean is the 21st century alternative to the old, machine-like model of standardisation that unfortunately most of us are used to.”

Stephen says he has heard from many companies who have implemented what they believed to be a Lean business model, only to discover they have either just “brushed the surface” or implemented something entirely different.  As a result, they have not accomplished what they set out to achieve.  He therefore grabbed at the opportunity to speak to business school students.

“Educating this generation ensures the real Lean message survives,” said Stephen.

ENDS

 

Notes to Editors

 

For further information, please contact: Michelle Drapeau, PR Executive, on +44 (0) 1525 237599 OR Stephen Parry direct on +44 (0) 7838 114997

PostCTA1

Facts about Stephen Parry

  • He is author of the book, “Sense and Respond: the journey to customer purpose”, which presents an approach to business based on Lean Service Principles.
  • Stephen Parry is a leading expert in the fields of Lean organisational design and transformation and Lean leadership.
  • Clients include SAP, BT, Local Government, police authorities, financial services, IT Services, Shared Services, Outsourcing, Consultancies, TNT.
  • Stephen speaks regularly at international events and respected business schools such as Cranfield School of Management, the Fisher Business School at Ohio State University.  He is a Faculty Member of the USA Lean Enterprise Institute, visiting Fellow at the Professor Dan Jones Lean Enterprise Academy in the UK and a regular judge at the national business awards.
  • He has been interviewed on BBC Radio 4 and featured in documentaries on BBC1 and Channel 4.