Software Kanban Game

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Timing:

2-4 hours typically 3

Overview:

This is a game used for introducing Kanban to software teams in Danske Bank. It is based on the Software Development Kanban game by Christina Skaskiw (http://www.skaskiw.biz/resources.html)

Learning Points:

The game sets up a simple kanban board and have teams of 3-5 players go through several rounds (similar to days) in order to have work flow through the system. The game introduces concepts such as visualization of work, work in process/progress limit, manage flow, basic measurements and retrospective/improvements.

Link to Game: 

The following files provides stories, events, and rules

Rules for DB kanban game

Standard story cards

Fixed date story cards

Expedite story cards

Event cards

You can find the instructions and rules for the game in DanskeBankSoftwareKanbanGame

You can find a slide deck for running the game in SoftwareKanbanGame including a slide with follow-up questions for reflection on the game learning

 

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4 Responses to "Software Kanban Game"
  • Martin Vinther September 4, 2013 at 11:56 pm

    Hi Sune,

    Thanks for the game :-)

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  • sune lomholt September 5, 2013 at 1:45 am

    You are most welcome

    If you try it – let me know of your experience.

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  • Ole Tranberg January 8, 2014 at 5:08 am

    Very interesting and useful game. I tried it with one of my scrum teams to give them some sort of “hands-on” feeling with kanban.
    Thank you for introducing the game for me.

    During our retrospective over the actual game we came up with the following advices/suggestions:

    1. Start in slow speed
    We played the first two rounds in “slowmotion” one group at a time. So one group played round one while the other group where observers. Then the other group played round one while the first group where observers and the same for round 2.

    2. One dedicated facilitator pr. group
    We had two groups and therefore two facilitators which were a useful support for each group. The facilitator updated all the metrics and could answer all the questions that pops up in the beginning.

    3. Expedite Stories:
    Let them always have the highest priority. Also when they get delayed and therefore won’t give any business value.

    4. Add constraints to which dices that can move to which columns:
    In our case it would make sense to allow developer dices to move to Analysis, Test and Deploy. But Testers and “Deployers” should not be able to move anywhere. I would suggest to let the constraints be context related depending on the persons/company playing the game.

    (and then two minor improvement ideas):

    5. Buy one more dice in each color pr group
    When the teams gets a new team member (round 15) then give them a dice in the color matching the type of team member they select

    5. Print the Kanban board in colors
    A really minor improvement. Let the columns on the kanban board have the same colors as the dices assigned to the column

    /Ole

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  • sune lomholt January 8, 2014 at 12:40 pm

    Hi Ole,

    Thanks for the comments – great additions to the game.

    In fact one of the strong sides of this game layout is the possibility to change and accommodate it to your own context

    /sune

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