What is Lean PD
What is lean PD?
Lean Product Development is a generic term for applying “Lean Thinking” onto the product and process development context. Lean Thinking was first written down by J. Womack, who interpreted the backgrounds of the success of, amongst others, Toyota. Lean Thinking is more of a cultural aspect than a set of methods and tools. It therefore includes key principles and key behaviors to achieve a state of continuous improvement as a starting point and methods and tools as an effect thereof. Many lean practitioners, at the start, focus at the tools and methods and only later recognize the need and value of the key principles and behaviors. Lean started out as a method to improve efficiency and effectiveness in manufacturing. Although you can apply the same key principles and key behaviors to the context of product development, the methods and tools are harder to translate. Lean Product Development has its own set of methods and tools and its own set of challenges related to implementation.
Lean Product Development starters, practitioners and experts get together at the Lean Product and Process Development Exchange events to share their insights, such that we continue to develop the framework of Lean in Product Development together, containing for example:
Methods to grow and improve understanding of customer value
- Visual planning methods to achieve reliable and fast time to market
- Set Based Engineering
- Rapid Learning Cycles
- Creation, capturing and reuse of knowledge (“knowledge management”)
- Handle multi project environments while maintaining flow
- Value stream thinking to break silos
The LPPDE conferences are organized roughly yearly in both Europe and North America. These conferences are the motor for the flow of knowledge about lean in the product development context. We explicitly call our conferences "Exchange" - because that is what we think is the best moderator for learning: listen experts, see peers, discuss, learn from best practices from others and participate in workshops, that are offered at introductory as well as advanced level. Many participants of LPPDE conferences return, because they know: whenever I visit an LPPDE conference, I am sure I will return with a high number of great ideas, excellent examples and practical tips to continue my journey on the lean path in product development.