Limiting WIP vs Postponing Commitment

Hey Steve,

How does limiting WIP (an element of Kanban which you truly challenged in your new book) differ from postponing commitment (an element which is key in the TameFlow approach).

Does it have to do with the work being already in the process, potentially clogging up, while postponing is refraining from actually introducing the work to the system?


Please note that I do not suggest to avoid limiting WIP. I am very specific about how to do it or not to do it.

  • Do not use Column WIP Limits
  • Limit the amount with CONWIP: just as many work items as workers, no more, maybe even less; or
  • Release work only when there is signal from Herbie that there his capacity is about to become available. This is the essence of DBR.

Yes, it is essentially a way to “refrain” from introducing work, and to do so only when you know there is capacity for that work to move through from inception to end without stopping (“one piece flow”).

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