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Little’s Law – The ONE thing you can do to improve process performance

Overview

Is Your Project in Chaos? Master Little’s Law

Is your team battling over which work is most important to do right now? Are resources stopping on one thing to jump on another, only to switch again before that one is completed? Are you spending all your time firefighting and expediting? I’ll bet it takes too long to get things done, too.

If you’re answering, “yes, yes, YES!” you have too much work in your system. You have lost control over your delivery system. Here is ONE thing you can do that will make your life easier and will also improve the performance of your system.

Too much work in progress makes the setting task priorities more difficult—it adds confusion, drives multitasking, and causes delays to cascade through your portfolio. These local effects are easy to see. This extra work is the hidden contributor to increased project durations and poor delivery performance. Therefore, it’s critical for managers to monitor and manage the total amount of work in the system.

You must understand and master the practical application queuing theory known as Little’s law, formulated in 1961 by John Dutton Conant Little. Mastering this law will arm you with ONE thing that will improve your process and it doesn’t cost a dime.

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