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Jim Benson
Seattle, WA / Washington DC
I appreciate thoughtful action
Interests: food, personal productivity, personal kanban, kanban for software development
Recent Activity
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Personal Kanban won a Shingo Prize for Operational Excellence this year. This is the highest honor in Lean and we share the award with some pretty august company. This award is humbling. Shingo awards are usually focused on manufacturing or... Continue reading
Posted Apr 3, 2013 at Evolving Web
It’s been awhile since I’ve blogged here on Evolving Web. This is becoming a personal blog for someone who has invested a lot of his “person” in his work as of late. I’m vowing to change that this year and... Continue reading
Posted Feb 28, 2013 at Evolving Web
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The last few weeks have been busy. We’ve launched Kaizen Camp which is bustling with activity. We have three Kaizen Camps scheduled for New York, Los Angeles, and Boulder – with more on the way in Tel Aviv, Sydney, Melbourne,... Continue reading
Posted Sep 24, 2012 at Evolving Web
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This was originally an answer I posted in a Quora group, but I thought I would repost it here with some edits. Read the original, in context, here. After working with and owning several startups, it is clear that startup... Continue reading
Posted Sep 7, 2012 at Evolving Web
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We say that kanban is a visual control, but we also eschew external control (rules) being placed on us by others. So what does control really mean? We when we look at it, we have a lot of depth here.... Continue reading
Posted Jun 27, 2012 at Evolving Web
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Following last year’s excellent “Seattle Lean Camp”, we are now nearing Kaizen Camp: Seattle 2012. (We did have a name change, so as not to confuse us with another set of camps with the same name.) This year, Kaizen Camp... Continue reading
Posted Jun 12, 2012 at Evolving Web
This song was recorded in 1985, it was likely the 20th version of the song. It’s not our best song, but it is my favorite. Corey Smith, David Fisher, and myself in Corey’s living room. We all played just about... Continue reading
Posted Jun 2, 2012 at Evolving Web
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There’s change in the wind and I like it. The Lean Software and Systems Consortium (LSSC) has evolved to the Lean Systems Society (LSS). I was never a member of LSSC, but I am a founding fellow of LSS. Why?... Continue reading
Posted Jun 1, 2012 at Evolving Web
“What metric are you using to incentivize your people to perform?” “Every day we compile who processed the most orders, the winners are broadcast every day – as are the losers.” “Hmm, and how is that working.” “People love it,... Continue reading
Posted Apr 9, 2012 at Evolving Web
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Okay.. Herbert Hoover and Ayn Rand tell us of the rugged individualist. More or less, its a western ideal. We question convention - even conventions WE helped create. We have free will. We make decisions and act accordingly. In our... Continue reading
Posted Mar 29, 2012 at Evolving Web
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“Wine is to enjoy, not to judge.” ~ Hwi Woong Jeong (웅가) Wine Enthusiast The gentleman next to me took out his laptop and began typing, he had a large pile of wine labels and a notebook filled with wine... Continue reading
Posted Mar 29, 2012 at Evolving Web
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On my travels through startups and the corporate world I see small to gross acts of negligence. They usually come in the wrapper of something like, “because that’s our process.” Metrics are gathered for the sake of reports no one... Continue reading
Posted Mar 28, 2012 at Evolving Web
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Dear Jabe It strikes me that we humans often like to think. Yet we are still territorial creatures. Therefore when we invent anything, we wish to guard that thing. We are protectors of our territory. Even when there clearly is... Continue reading
Posted Mar 1, 2012 at Evolving Web
The Lean Startup movement has focused considerable energy in the message that we learn from failures. Small, easily recoverable, failures can be invaluable in the success of a company. However, many ignore failure and focus on success. Since success is... Continue reading
Posted Feb 23, 2012 at Evolving Web
Are you a manager trying to get by in a flat or agile company? Do you find the role of manager repeatedly maligned? This is more than just “It’s lonely in the middle.” There are significant positive shifts in making... Continue reading
Posted Feb 21, 2012 at Evolving Web
In this episode of Collaberwocky, Jabe Bloom, Corey Ladas and I discuss “The Language of Management.” It seems that different rungs of the corporate ladder come with different perspectives. None are complete and all have their own biases and areas... Continue reading
Posted Feb 16, 2012 at Evolving Web
For years I have been trying to get myself to do an interview show. There was one problem – interviews are not very collaborative. After doing Lean Coffees for a few years and hosting Lean Camp Seattle last year, it... Continue reading
Posted Feb 14, 2012 at Evolving Web
No, it's merely a tool to help shift perception.
I am not saying anything about "systems thinking" as it is written down. I am saying everything about human nature. Surely you read the part where I said it was awesome, yes?
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I recently tweeted this after mulling over the differences I’ve seen while working with various clients. Some of them have practically been begging people to slow down, finish less with higher quality, and to take time out to read. Others... Continue reading
Posted Jan 24, 2012 at Evolving Web
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A few months ago, I wrote a series of posts in this blog about cognitive bias. Those became the pre-writing for this short ebook: Why Plans Fail. It’s $2.99, or free if you have Amazon Prime. This is the first... Continue reading
Posted Jan 5, 2012 at Evolving Web
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Quote 5: Nancy: They wouldn’t send us any money! They said we’d spend it on DRUGS! Sid: We would! Before Gary Oldman was an arch villain all the time, he played Sid Vicious in Sid and Nancy - a roll... Continue reading
Posted Dec 20, 2011 at Evolving Web
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A good story, especially one that strikes home, can be particularly disarming. You are drawn into it. You feel its inherent truth. A truth that may or may not be real. But we feel it is real and we follow... Continue reading
Posted Dec 19, 2011 at Evolving Web
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Quote #3 - I was thrown out of N.Y.U. my freshman year for cheating on my metaphysics final, you know. I looked within the soul of the boy sitting next to me. When I was thrown out, my mother, who... Continue reading
Posted Dec 15, 2011 at Evolving Web
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(This is part 2 of a 5 part series that starts here) So, it’s an average day on Dagobah, rainy, hot, humid. Luke Skywalker has just finished some fitness exercises with Yoda and they come across a cave. It creeps... Continue reading
Posted Dec 14, 2011 at Evolving Web