Black Swan Farming

Black Swan Farming using Cost of Delay

Discover, nurture and speed up the delivery of value

Improving prioritization has become a tired concept in most IT departments, and yet it has the potential to change the conversation from one of cutting cost, to delivering valuable solutions as quick as the business needs it. This paper examines how Maersk Line applied an economic framework across a $100 million portfolio to quickly discover, nurture and speed up the delivery of value.

We are presenting at Agile2013 in Nashville, Tennessee – the talk is on Tuesday, August 6th, in the morning. Details can be found here.

Most organisations don’t suffer from a lack of innovative ideas, they suffer from not being able to pick the best of what turns out to be a bad bunch. Thanks to the consumerization of IT and software eating the world this is getting worse. Innovation and software development is already synonymous in most organizations. As Jack Welch says: If you are not moving at the speed of the marketplace you’re already dead – you just haven’t stopped breathing yet.

So how do we improve the way we prioritise to ensure that we’re delivering value quickly and not wasting our precious capacity to innovate? Since economics is all about scarcity, we can turn to economics to help us quickly discover, nurture and speed up the delivery of value.

  1. Improve Prioritisation – by using CD3 (Cost of Delay Divided by Duration)
  2. Improve Decision-making – by making the economic trade-offs visible
  3. Change the Focus – from efficiency and cost to speed and value

If you are interested in more, read our experience report about how Cost of Delay enabled a Fortune 500 company to discover, nurture and speed up the delivery of value across $100m portfolio.