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December 11-13, 2018: Lean IT Certification 3-Day Workshop – Bloomington, MN

December 11 - December 13


Join us for an immersive and interactive 3-day workshop where you will earn your Lean IT Concepts Learner™ Certificate.

Course Description & Schedule

Day 1: Lean IT 101 – Lean Concepts for IT Professionals
December 11, 2018 9:00 AM – 4:30 PM

Participants: Anyone in the organization and any experience level.

Delivery: Lecture, Work Sessions, Simulation

Lean engineering has been applied to manufacturing organizations for decades with transformative results. But did you know that Lean can be applied in any organization, including technology organizations? Lean can be an overlay across a technology organization to support more effective Strategy, Software Development, IT Infrastructure and Operations, Information Security, and Project Delivery. For companies that are transitioning to more iterative ways of deploying their technology solutions such as Agile and DevOps, incorporating Lean practices can increase the organization’s ability to identify waste, and build a culture of continuous improvement.

A culture of continuous improvement depends on the alignment between Purpose, Process, People, and the scientific method. In this workshop, you will learn about the process for formulating and deploying an organizational strategy aimed at delivering focused value to the customer, discuss the importance of making visible horizontal process flow to the customer, and learn about the importance and required skills for employee problem solving. The workshop includes simulations that will help participants understand the concepts of flow, pull, kaizen, workload balancing, visual management, leader standard work and many others, and how to apply them to transform your technology organization.

Small group discussions will provide an opportunity to share best practices, reflect on learning, and identify opportunities for process improvements.

Day 2: Lean IT Value Stream Mapping
December 12, 2018 9:00 AM – 4:30 PM

Recommended prerequisite: Lean IT 101

Participants: Anyone in the organization and any experience level.

Delivery: Lecture, Work Sessions, Simulation

Process improvement is a phrase that is often encouraged by leadership but resisted by those involved in the process, especially in IT when the purpose of the process isn’t necessarily understood, and it often seems quicker to circumvent process in delivering technology solutions. Additionally, “process improvement” often is associated with the “do more with less” sentiment – to which many people equate to more stress, resulting in diminished employee engagement and even less process compliance.

Incorporating Lean into your organization turns that dynamic on its head by bridging the gap between a company’s vision and mission and the work each person does in the organization. Understanding how the work each person does contributes to the company’s goals increases interest and engagement. Further, asking people for their opinions on the best way to realize those goals is a powerful means towards achieving them. Lean acknowledges that the real expertise in the organization is within the workforce. Tapping into that expertise can transform your organization, leading to increased innovation, processes that support vs. inhibit success, employee engagement, and a culture of problem solving – all foundational to providing maximum customer value.

This interactive workshop demonstrates how to apply lean principles through value-stream mapping to accomplish what many IT organizations find it difficult to do: make continuous improvements to their software development, IT services, information security, infrastructure, QA and PMO processes. By learning to identify key processes – or value streams – for improvement, draw an accurate current-state map of each process, apply lean principles to envision a leaner future-state for each value stream , and then come up with actions needed to implement the future-state in a way that can be sustained, you will develop a methodology that leads to sustainable outcomes and true continuous improvement.

Day 3: Lean IT Problem Solving
December 13, 2018 9:00 AM – 4:30 PM

Recommended prerequisite: Lean IT 101

Participants: Anyone in the organization and any experience level.

Delivery: Lecture, Work Sessions, Active Problem Solving

In order to build the culture of problem solving, an organization needs to be a “Community of THINKERS”, working together on continuous improvement and the A3 problem-solving process, which aligns with organization’s business objectives.

The root cause of many problems is often covered up by layers of short-term solutions that are full of non-value work (waste), allowing persistent problems to lurk underneath. Lean focuses on removing waste through a practical problem-solving approach known as A3. This approach puts the problem solving into the hands of the real experts – your employees – who are intimately familiar with the day-to-day work being done in your organization. It helps teams identify the root cause of problems and encourages critical thinking and experimentation to solve and finally eliminate the root cause. This requires a shift in culture for many organizations where problems are commonly met with negativity and a focus on resolving the immediate symptoms as quickly as possible. Successful problem-solving hinges on how well we teach and apply a robust, shared method at all levels to incorporate “evolutionary learning” into the company culture.

In this workshop we will practice several of the problem-solving steps using real-life examples from IT organizations. We will also briefly discuss the infrastructure required to develop and sustain problem solvers, and touch on areas such as strategy deployment, standardized work, visual management and Gemba, or “Go and See”. Gemba will be a key component discussed within ALL the steps of the lean problem-solving process, as it is the bridge between a company’s business objectives and the work each person does within the company.

Many IT organizations have a gap when it comes to connecting an organization’s business objectives with the work being done by its technologists, leading to technology solutions that don’t quite hit the mark when it comes to maximizing customer value. We will discuss how to “bring to life” the values a company has set as their guiding principles or mission statements. We will do this by explaining the specific steps/actions to consider while using problem-solving process in daily activities (e.g. – communication, buy-in, engagement, purpose, customer satisfaction and more). We will discuss each participants alignment to the company goals or business plan, normally centered around the key performance indicators (i.e. Quality, Cost, Productivity, Safety, Delivery and Customer Experience).

About the Facilitator

Megan O’Neal
Megan has spent her career in process improvement, starting with software development and moving into lean and agile coaching in the early 2000s. She spent 10+ years immersed in and studying lean transformations, and has trained extensively at the Lean Enterprise Institute and has her Lean Six Sigma Black Belt. Megan currently trains and coaches teams on lean and agile practices, including scrum, kanban, value stream mapping, visual management, structured PDCA problem solving, standard work for leaders and front-line team members, and supports teams and individuals in their development of a lean mindset.


December 11
December 13


Rasmussen College
4400 W 78th St
Bloomington, MN 55435 United States