The motivation and use of kanban in software engineering is often being misunderstood. It isn't a prescriptive method or process template. Kanban offers us a set of guidelines and principles for implementing a pull system. When followed appropriately these principles will lead every kanban process implementation to different and uniquely tailored to its environment, value stream and risk profile of the work being undertaken. Kanban offers us a new way to think about change within software development organizations. It offers an incremental approach to change. Kanban allows us to implement my Recipe for Success: focus on quality; reduce work-in-progress and release often; balance demand against throughput; and prioritize. It also offers us a visual and transparent mechanism to see opportunities for improvement and change: bottlenecks; waste; and variability.
David Anderson is a thought leader in the software engineering management field. He was an early advocate of agile methods. His first book, Agile Management for Software Engineering focused on enterprise scale issues of managing teams in large organizations, and was published by Prentice Hall in 2003. David is also well respected in the formal and academic software engineering field and recently co-authored a Technical Note from the Software Engineering Institute at Carnegie Mellon University titled CMMI and Agile: Why not embrace both! See Agile Management Blog for more of his writings and thoughts on software development management.