I just wrote a lengthy reply on a kanbandev thread about Using Scrum to implement Kanban and vice versa and thought I would share it here, especially so I can tweet it directly and try to spark a discussion about it in Scrum Gathering Atlanta (where I’m currently at…)
I engaged the conversation when Danko said:
Well, another mystery regarding the above is whether scrum is an evolution of kanban (which means you evolve to a point that you can start implement scrum which gives you a lot of effectiveness)
That scrum is only “scripting the way” to kanban (which means at the beginning , the company needs some strong guidelines how to operate and then we can leave scrum and start working in kanban since the “right” mind set was set.
My guts feeling is that the second one is the “right” thing thus at higher level of scrum we start to eliminate the meetings, roles and so on and start focusing on how to do things better while we are equipped with good technical and mind set tools
My take on it is that indeed as teams grow more and more mature they can shed away the scaffolding / learning wheels that Scrum provides and achieve better more effective flow. But that is not to say they reach Kanban.
Kanban or at least the Kanban Method for change leadership does not define the destination. It is not something you reach. It defines the approach you take on the journey there.
You use Kanban to search for the process that works best for you. ( I recently started calling it the search for process/context fit – like product/market fit in lean startup)
I see Scrum the same way. A different approach to the search though. And scrum having more process and prescription confuses people into thinking it is the destination. I see the current attempt to move from Scrum-but to Scrum-and as a positive way to convey the message of searching and inclusion and emergence more clearly.
From this perspective one can ask whether at the early stages of the search it is more effective to use more perscription/change or minimum change possible. The answer probably is it depends.
But Kanban says to very critically examine every aspect of the change and consider whether it is a must.
I’ve seen teams that accelerate through the low maturity process very fast with Kanban without any sprints/roles. So have many practitioners on other case studies reported here on the list and in the industry conferences.
There are of course many cases of teams accelerating through low maturity using scrum.
As well as (too many) teams/orgs that stay in the base camp of low maturity and never continue the journey with Scrum OR Kanban ( I know a certain someone speaking about that today
and next week
At the minimum an understanding of Kanban should drive people to critically consider what is the minimum viable change for their organization when they start. If they choose to include Scrum they should be able to elaborate why and not just because Scrum says so…
What do you think?