The main idea behind Lean is to avoid over production because over production is not only wasteful it prevents rapid response to changing customer demand.
The lean initiative in the product development primarily revolves around the concept of eliminating waste and getting quality right the first time. Lean product development is a new concept. This concept is first developed and tested in Toyota's Motor Company design studios and it is a very successful approach that Toyota uses to design new car models. Toyota’s success caused their methods to be studied and imitated by people in many diverse industries, including software development.
Lean Software Development Principles
Lean principles are very important for organization that continuously improve its process. Let's look at the basic principles and practices of Lean, as applied to software development.
The three biggest wastes in software development are:
Focus On Learning
Planning is useful. Learning is essential.
Build Quality In
If you routinely find defects in your verification process, your process is defective.
Abolish the idea that it is a good idea to start development with a complete specification.
Lists and queues are buffers between organizations that simply slow things down.
Engaged, thinking people provide the most sustainable competitive advantage.
Optimize the Whole
Brilliant products emerge from a unique combination of opportunity and technology.
Now, let's look at the agile principles from the agile manifest.
The non-agile world values Process whereas the Agile world values People. Documentation and Traceability are key objectives in the non-agile world and Working Software is the main objective of Agility.
The executives lean towards Lean Product Development more readily that they do Agile. This is partly because Agility is expressed in the language of developers, not managers. Lean, on the other hand generally makes sense at all levels from developers up through executive officers. Lean speaks the language of "production" without much regard to what is being produced.