4 steps, 1 cornerstone
Here are the 4 steps and the cornerstone we use to create the right product.
Suppose you have a great Idea and you want to make it real. You’ll start with the cornerstone which is “Leadership and Teamwork”. You need to be passionate about your idea and bring around you people that will have skills and co-create with you.
Then you can start the first step: understanding deeply the problem you try to address and propose solutions. You’ll need to know the big picture, identify your assumptions, go out of the building to identify the pain points of your potential (or existing) users (even if they don’t know yet they have a problem . This is “See the Whole”.
You’ll have a lot of information after this step and you’ll have to challenge options, focus, simplify and find a consensus to concentrate on what is the right product. This is the “Find Trade-Offs” step.
Since you have simplified your design, you’ll be able to “Deliver Fast” with an iterative and incremental approach. Design is about knowledge creation, you’ll have to “(L)earn Often” to remove the major waste we are fighting: “working on the wrong product”. This is a wheel, so of course you’ll start again “See the whole” step.
What about Patterns?
We have defined 4 patterns for each step and the cornerstone. A good pattern appears when someone says “that’s exactly what I am already doing and it works!” (we have not created anything, we have just integrated what was working for us and gave it a name). Here are the patterns we have defined:
You might not use ALL the patterns and the practices you’ll use for the patterns will differ depending on your context. A pattern is there to be implemented in different ways, but the objectives stay the same. They are also there to be combined between them.
How to remember those 25 patterns: 5 acronyms
We created “Lean Design Patterns” to better communicate about creating the right product. The problem of Lean is that it’s a complex system and hard to memorize. We are using 5 acronyms that works as checklists to remember easily if you have not missed anything (you’ll see the link with the patterns already listed).
What about Practices?
Principles are good, patterns are great, but practices are even better, because one of the objective of this initiative is to be able to start creating the right product next Monday. Each practice we detail can be explained in 2 minutes, only need a sheet of paper and a pen and are collaborative. They have been created and tested to leverage the teamwork. The most important ones are:
- See the whole: Root Cause Analysis, Impact Mapping, Story Mapping, Collaborative Games, Canvas
- Find Trade-Offs: ODAS (Outcome, Desirability, Assumptions, System qualities), MoSCoW (Must, Should, Could, Wish), Relative estimation, specification by example
- Deliver Fast: Iterative and Incremental Development, Scrum, Concurrent Engineering
- (L)earn often: Actionnable Metrics, Split testing, A3 Process, Assumptions backlog, Real options
Lean Design works as a System
The 4 steps works together. You can read “See the whole, in order to Find trade-offs, in order to Deliver Fast in order to Learn and earn often, in order to See the whole, …”.