What is Oobeya? Oobeya is a Japanese project management philosophy. This philosophy is based on the principles of lean management. One of the key principles of Oobeya is that the project team should focus on creating top quality project deliverables.
Only by creating top quality project deliverables, the project team will be able to create satisfied customers or clients.Another principle of Oobeya is to focus continuously on eliminating wastages and variability in processes. By cutting down wastage and variability the lead time and costs of the project can be brought down. This is particularly important for projects which are on a tight budget.
The third key principle of Oobeya is continuous improvement of human resources working in the project. The people working in the project should be given responsibility and authority. They should be given the opportunity to solve problems in their area of work. The focus should be on continuous, gradual improvement in the quality of work of those working on the project.In order to implement its key principles Oobeya relies on certain tools and ways of doing things. Visual tools are used extensively during the course of the project to remind team members of the status of work, the key issues, the key goals and the problems and challenges.
Since the philosophy has its roots in Japan, Oobeya places a lot of emphasis on collaboration and mutual trust between team members. Team members should proactively collaborate with each other so that the challenges and obstacles can be overcome. Leadership & vision also play a very important role in Oobeya. The vision of the project leader plays a very important role in shaping the course of the project. The vision gives the idea to team members about what exactly the project intends to achieve. Leadership plays an important role in motivating team members and binding them together in a team.
The Oobeya philosophy is being employed by a number of businesses, especially those in the Information Technology sector, for project management. IT projects are usually headed by a lead engineer or chief engineer or project manager. Oobeya has proved to be particularly effective in engineering and technology projects.It is very important for the individual heading the project team to be aware of the key principles of Oobeya. The knowledge can help the project become more successful in achieving its goals and objectives.