SwiftKanban Features We've added some new features and made quite a few enhancements to SwiftKanban over the past few weeks. This post details some of the highlights. Get a report of the 'net' work-time for each card while the card was in an 'in-progress' lane, and was neither blocked nor unassigned. This enables you to compare the actual work on a card to the initial estimation. Based on a lot of user feedback, the Card Aging view is now simplified to indicate the 'active' and 'inactive' cards.

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KanbanIn the last few weeks, I read 4 very interesting articles that underscore the value of using Kanban for Project Management, and yet represent two extreme ends of how Kanban is gaining recognition in this field. First, there was a series of 3 great blog posts by none other than our friend, philosopher and guide, and Kanban pioneer, David Anderson. Starting with the first one – "Project  Management with Kanban", David has outlined very nicely how Project Management can truly benefit by using the various techniques, models and measurements that make effective use of historical data...

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Agile Tester As Agile gets larger acceptance across the (Indian software) industry, the (manual) testing community has been concerned about how it will impact them. They hear about developers doing testing, test automation and hence wonder – what role am I going to be play? Is this going to kill my job? The concern is natural given a general perception that in Agile, developers should be doing testing. This concern has been part of the resistance that some of the organizations are facing in adopting Agile thinking.

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SwiftKanban - Adjacency Matrix We have just updated SwiftKanban with some great features we're sure you will like. We've incorporated a number of customer suggestions with this update and have introduced powerful new capabilities to help you manage your Kanban/ Agile initiatives and teams more effectively. Kanban says - 'Start with what you have today.'  Teams adopting Kanban map their process on the Kanban board and start using it manage their work.  The reality is that many times...

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Productivity In my last blog, The Enigma of Employee Productivity, we had explored and discussed about deep meaning at work, motivation at work and productivity. We argued and pointed to many prominent research/ study findings which showed us that (a) the majority of the workforce across organizations globally is not engaged at work, (b) for "higher level" work that requires creativity and innovation, traditional management motivation methods including incentives and monetary rewards don’t work, these methods seemed to be made for the industrial era and are ill equipped for the modern knowledge era.

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Achieving FlowAs I watch the USA battle it out with Belgium in the World Cup 2014, (OK, I admit I am working from home today ;-) ), I am once again reminded that the most beautiful moments of the game are those that are most – there is no better way to describe it – fluid! While the game overall is a joy to watch (at least for me – and billions of other “World Cup time soccer fans” worldwide!), every now and then you see moments of sheer beauty and thrill – plays that last more than 1-2 passes. It could be just a series of quick passes between two players to thwart an opposition player...

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SwiftKanban You now have access to all your charts in a single view. They can be resized and placed wherever you want. Also, individual charts now have their own filters that override the common filter. Signing up for SwiftKanban just became a lot easier - You can now sign up using an existing Google account making the entire process quicker and a lot simpler. You can now see the flow of cards over a given time period in an animated replay of events of your board. You can track the CFD and Resource Graph as a continuous flow or you can track one card at a time.

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Employee EngagementSatya Nadella, in his first interview after taking over as CEO of Microsoft, said that his “quest” is to create a company “where people find deep meaning at work”. This struck me as very different. CEOs normally don’t talk of “quest” and “deep meaning”, they usually talk of stuff like increasing market share, profits, innovation, etc. Many questions kept popping in my mind; like- –Is he really serious about “deep meaning at work” thing? We understand it benefits the individual, but does it benefit the company? Do employees who find deep meaning at work create a better company?

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ChecklistsIdeas are cheap. Execution is Everything. One of the many tenets that one hears often in the Silicon Valley underscoring the fact that successful innovation requires not just the initial spark of an idea but the discipline to execute on it till it truly reaches its full potential and impacts people in the way the innovator perhaps originally thought it might! In fact, the history of innovation is replete with examples of not the one who had the original idea but the one who saw its potential and took it all the way to a huge market success!

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Management InsightsAs our customers have dug in deeper with their implementation of Kanban systems in a variety of domains– most often IT Ops/ DevOps and software development, but also general business operations, it has become clear to us that they are not just looking at the standard Kanban metrics, they are looking for additional insights to help understand why and how something happened and where they can start to look for improvements. It is the ‘why’ and ‘how’ and ‘when’ and ‘where’ aspects of these questions that start to make Kanban systems truly interesting as information radiators.

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