Lean Works Better with Agile

Advocates of Lean production and advocates pf Agile development both want the same thing. What’s different is Agile’s much higher end-user collaboration — which great software requires.

Making software is not like making cars. When you make software you have the opportunity to ask end users for feedback on working pieces of the product as it is still being created — so the software will likely match what customers actually want. But when you make a car you have to wait until the car is finished before you can get user feedback on the actual car, not just on images or descriptions. Yes, it’s possible for customers to go on the automaker’s website or dealer and specify various options — colors, features, and design alternatives. But those options are already listed for you. That’s different than when users give software developers feedback on how to tweak the product while it’s still being worked on.

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