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Conversation between a (Kanban Coach) father and a teenage son

February 28th, 2024 by

“A problem well stated is a problem half solved.” – Charles F. Kettering

“Today I’ve been called from school and told you are always late….”
“Me?! What the…. I mean, not ALWAYS… from time to time maybe yes, but not always, in fact I’m very often on time!”

“All right Son, let’s do something about it!”

A few months later, showing a chart displaying the statistical distribution of delays.


Statistical distribution of delays

“Son, this is the metric of how often you are on time or late, overall”

“Who? Me? You must be joking!”

“No, I’m not, this is you over the past months, as you can see your on-time-arrival rate is 68% of occurrences, whilst you arrive within 15 minutes of delay 93% of times and 99% of times your are there within half an hour of delay, that is it”

“Dad you are a damn nerd!”

“Yes, I know I am Son, but these are facts, what the psychologists would call a reality check. Which is the rate of delays that the school is ready to accept?”

“No idea Dad”

“All right, then check with them, even though I suspect they have an expectation that is much lower than your current delay rate; by the way the good news is that the statistical distribution is reasonably thin tailed which means that you are consistently predictible…”

“What is this statistical crap Daaad?! Tell me in a way that also the cat can understand!”

“I mean that you do things more or less always the same way, so probably it’s enough that you set an half an hour earlier your alarm in the morning and you will be consistently on time, if you want….”

“Come on Dad, why should I wake up half an hour earlier…. I can instead rush and be on time!”

“It’s your decision Son, you are the master of your fate, your are the captain of your soul….”

“Also the poem crap now, stop it there Dad, got the message….”

Above conversation and the characters represented in it are purely fictional for the sake of explaining some Kanban Method to the folks

I originally posted this article on LinkedIn on February 18, 2024