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simulating_wip_effects_with_balls_and_a_banana [2017/05/02 11:53] (current)
Hans Samios created
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 +====== Simulating WIP Effects with Balls and a Banana ======
 +
 +====== Premise ======
 +
 +WIP is the silent productivity killer of many organizations. Too much WIP leads to many "bad things":​
 +
 +  * Increases overall lead time
 +  * Reduces throughput
 +  * Increases context switching (and so reduces capacity to apply to work)
 +  * Delays delivery of value
 +  * Reduces quality
 +  * Distracts from improving ourselves (as "we are too busy digging ditches to watch the backhoe demonstration"​)
 +
 +The problem is that most organizations really do not understand how bad it is to have to much WIP. After all, if you have WIP, doesn'​t this mean you are always busy and so producing more stuff. ​
 +
 +The idea behind this simulation / game is to help people understand that just being busy doesn'​t mean you are being productive and that there is probably a target amount of WIP that that is optimal from the perspective of an organization delivering something to the customer.
 +
 +====== Setup ======
 +
 +You have 5 people in a star formation. Balls will be passed in a specific order around the star. 6th person (or facilitator) is the counter - number of balls completed, number of balls dropped. Idea is to count how many balls you can get through each person and back to start in 60 seconds with 3 balls and a (rubber) banana, then 5 balls and banana, then 7 balls and banana. Facilitator feeds in balls to one person. ​
 +
 +====== Debrief ======
 +
 +You then plot number of balls vs throughput (number of balls) on one line , and then subtract number of balls dropped on another line. Result is that from 3 to 5 balls you typically see increase in throughput but also increase in defects (total usually goes up), but from 5 to 7 you'll see lots more defects and often just general throughput goes down without even factoring in the defects (chasing dropped balls). Note sometimes you see a person holding on to a ball in the 7 ball case - facilitator makes sure they pass the ball on. Leads to discussion about optimal WIP and effect of defects etc.
 +
 +====== Want to Know More ====== ​
 +
 +  * [[how_do_we_control_work-in-progress_wip|How Do We Control Work-in-Progress (WIP)?]]
 +
 +
 +~~LINKBACK~~
 +~~DISCUSSION~~
 +
 +{{tag>​games simulation WIP}}
  
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  • Last modified: 2017/05/02 11:53
  • by Hans Samios