BOOK REVIEW- Kanban: Successful Evolutionary Change for Your Technology Business

Kanban-book-image1DAN’S SCORE: Stars-5
Kanban: Successful Evolutionary Change for Your Technology Business
By David J. Anderson


Dan’s Note: When I originally posted this, I gave this book three stars. My main beef was it was too advanced for my understanding at the time. I guess I’ve grown. I have reread this book and must say, for me, its a game changer. Its not for the feint of heart, though. Kanban has a lot of depth. I’m still grasping many of its principles. One thing I certainly dig–Anderson is a Deming fan. I think Deming would  have liked Anderson too.

Let me first say this–this is NOT a bad book. Its actually very good. The reason I gave it a 3.5 star rating is because its a little too advanced for my current skill/experience level. I spent quite a bit of time researching what was being discussed in the book rather than actually reading it. For instance–how to read a Cumulative Flow Diagram and how to map value streams. Combined with a very short lending time from my library system, I ended up having to skip some things in the book I didn’t have time to research and so there was a lot of things I didn’t get out of reading it.

That being said, there is a lot of good things in here. This is a very nuts and bolts type of book. Anderson explains in depth how Kanban works and how to implement it. I was intrigued by his claim that simply creating a visual representation of value stream and limiting WIP caused organizations to change. This was one of the strengths of Kanban–if your organization is resistant to change, this may be a good strategy. Kanban, by its strong visual representation, accentuates waste and roadblocks and people just jump in to fix it.

Anderson,DavidJSM_1348669947

David J. Anderson

Anderson also brings home some principles in this book that are close to my heart–what a kaizen culture looks like and why its so powerful and also the importance of sustainability.

The main complaint I have about this book is the visuals. Some of the photos are not clear and some of the drawings did not make a lot of sense to me. Again, some of this may be just an issue with my skill/experience level.

This book really stretched my horizions and I’d like to go back and study it more. Its only $9.99 on the Kindle. Once I finish reading it, I’ll have to revisit my score.

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