Kanban Misconception: Kanban is Just Scrum Without Iterations

Jenny Stuart
Construx VP of Consulting

There is some truth here, in that Kanban doesn’t have iterations. Kanban is a flow-based system. Work starts when there is availability to begin it.

Kanban’s greatest strength is that it models anything and is very flexible. To adopt Kanban, teams should:

  • Understand and model the current workflow
  • Define exit criteria by workflow stage
  • Set WIP limits
  • Identify any necessary classes of service

Because Kanban helps you understand the work a team does and the workflow, if you apply Kanban to a Scrum team, it would look very much like Scrum. A Kanban implementation in an organization that isn’t doing Scrum will look nothing like Scrum.

The following is a Kanban board for an onshore lead who managed an offshore team making small change requests for an internal system:

Kanban allows you to gain a deep understanding of your work and seek to optimize it to deliver value to the end users quickly.

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