Applying Hoshin Kanri at Toyota

by Ben Linders on  Mar 23, 2017

Toyota uses Hoshin Kanri to give direction on where they want to improve using Lean IT. Employees at various levels can exchange ideas about Hoshin items, and potentially get them approved by higher management. This approach makes results stronger and increases buy- in from the employees who contribute upfront.

Lean and Agile Culture at the Finnish Broadcasting Company Yle

by Ben Linders on  Mar 21, 2017

Scaling lean and agile is not a question of frameworks, it's about values, principles and mindset. At Yle the company management has been involved in the agile transformation by carrying out experiments, learning and doing; not by implementing frameworks. Magic happens when you work together with people in teams on all levels.

Driving Improvements with Lean Pilots

by Ben Linders on  Mar 16, 2017

Lean, agile and Lean Startup can strengthen each other for driving improvement. Lean Pilots, a data-driven improvement framework for removing major cross-functional organizational impediments, has been used to drive internal continuous improvement.

Improving IT Performance with Continuous Delivery

by Ben Linders on  Mar 11, 2017

The main benefit of continuous delivery is lower-risk releases; comprehensive test automation and continuous integration are practices that have the biggest impact on IT performance. Research of continuous delivery and IT performance tells us that implementing continuous delivery practices leads to higher IT performance and high performers achieve both higher tempo and higher levels of stability.

Creating a More Equal Workplace

by Ben Linders on  Mar 10, 2017 5

Women are leaving the tech industry because they are unhappy, don't feel valued or lack access to opportunities. We need to create environments that retain and grow employees, regardless of what they look like on the outside, argued Kate Heddleston. During her QCon London talk she suggested a process that organizations can use if they want to create equal access opportunities.

Organizing Improvements with Lean Leadership at ING Bank

by Ben Linders on  Mar 09, 2017

It’s the manager’s job to organize improvements and to make sure that real learnings take place. For real learnings you must accept the unknown and move outside of your knowledge boundary. Agile, lean and continuous delivery help to boost your learning capabilities.

Testers Should Think Like Marketeers

by Ben Linders on  Mar 03, 2017

Testers should be sharing stories and talking about the things they care about, to get people interested in what they are doing. The future of testing needs testers to think like marketeers. They can start by making or writing something such as a blog, article, talk, or video, and share it.

Making Distributed Development Work

by Ben Linders on  Mar 02, 2017

Distributed development depends on effective communication: you need to look for ways to have robust and diverse communication, build empathy towards each other to encourage feedback, and keep an eye on motivation. Team members are more engaged and creative when there’s shared ownership and responsibility for complete delivery from idea to production in distributed teams.

Organizing over Organization

by Ben Linders on  Feb 23, 2017

In the coming years we will see less organizations, but not less organizing. Organizing is a daily activity to get things done, but we don't necessarily need organizations to do things. When individuals are subordinate to the organization, it's an inhibitor for adopting modern management approaches.

Courage to Become Agile

by Ben Linders on  Feb 20, 2017

Being brave is about doing what is necessary, even when you are afraid. The single most important thing in agile is to inspect and dare to change things which aren't working. You can start with small experiments to find solutions, and if it turns they do not work, then you can stop them.

Overcoming Self-Imposed Limitations

by Ben Linders on  Feb 16, 2017

People can feel limited when challenged, which slows them down or keeps them from trying. It can be a real problem, but their fear might actually be in their imagination. Sometimes the only thing that's holding you back is yourself. Survival rules can hinder us- sometimes you have to break them.

Practical Tips for Automated Acceptance Tests

by Ben Linders on  Feb 10, 2017

Testing techniques like Equivalence Partitioning, Boundary Value Analysis, and Risk-based Testing can help you decide what to test and when to automate a test. InfoQ spoke with Adrian Bolboacă about different types of tests, writing sufficient and good acceptance tests, criteria to decide to automate a test, and how to apply test automation to create executable specifications.

Approval Testing with TextTest

by Ben Linders on  Feb 09, 2017

Approval testing is a test technique which compares the current output of your code with an 'approved' version. The approved version is created by initially examining the test output and approving the result. You can revisit the approved version and easily update it when the requirements change. Approval testing is supported by TextTest, an open source tool for text-based functional testing.

Dead Code Must Be Removed

by Ben Linders on  Feb 09, 2017 4

Dead code needs to be found and removed; leaving dead code in is an obstacle to programmer understanding and action, and there's the risk that the code is awakened which can cause significant problems. Deleting dead code is not a technical problem; it is a problem of mindset and culture.

Testing Challenges and Essential Skills for Testers

by Ben Linders on  Jan 26, 2017 1

Complex AI systems with non-deterministic outcomes pose challenges for testers and programmers. Such systems will increasingly become normal in high-impact, high-risk applications, argues Fiona Charles; testers should increase their capacity for thinking and learning and develop a number of personal strengths such as courage and good judgement.