Simplified regular meetings
Kanban only have daily stand up, the stand up focus on block discussion. Planning, demo and retrospective are held as needed. Those meetings are not regular mandatory any more.
‘One person’ planning, estimating and reporting
As Kanban doesn’t have Sprint and employ a principle that release should happen as soon as feature ready, planning only means changing priority of stories for Kanban. Team just focus on in-process stories and blocks, should avoid any overhead on answering ETA questions. The request of ETA or release date become a overhead of Agile Coach, he or she could use any methodology to bridge the needs from stakeholders. A good technique could be velocity by stories, by managing all stories to similar small sizes, Agile Coach could work with team to track completed story count per week. Regard a question like ‘how long can we deliver the new story?’, change that to ‘how many small stories can we break down?’
In another word, for question like ‘when the team could deliver the feature?’, the answer from Kanban team is ‘team will deliver it as fast as possible’. For any other question, Agile Coach should work with PO to facilitate the answer.
Team might be in a organization where regular reporting is needed. Agile Coach should be responsible for that and bring as little as possible overhead to team.
‘On demand’ demo and retrospective
Demo is a communication tool to use in anytime feedback needed from team or stakeholders. It will not happen in regular base, just when needed.
Any one in team could request retrospective on specific topic. Any team aligned action become a story on board at once as highest priority. For any action team think should be taken in the future, that become useless and team don’t need any story follow up. If an action is a behavior principle for team, team agreement should be a document tracking the new principle.
WIP limit is very important
Work In Process (WIP) limit is the most important tool to help team realize the block and test how good they are on collaboration. The limit should be defined smaller than team size and calibrate with time. Basically the more effective the team is, the smaller of limit is. When never limit is reached, pair programming or collaboration should happen to resolve limit issue as soon as possible.
Column/Phase DOD is introduced
Kanban doesn’t breakdown story into tasks, it use Column/Phase like ‘Breaking Down’, ‘In Process’, ‘Test’ to track story status. Team should agree on DOD when story could exit the current phase and move to next. A good technique is using partial release DOD in phase DOD to make sure release DOD spread to all phases.
Release and celebration
Depending on CI/CD capacity of team, team should release Done story as early as possible. Without a regular demo like Scrum, Agile Coach and manager should consider a more prompt way to celebrate team achievement with release.