Velocity versus Acceleration

Velocity is a rate of change coupled with direction. When managers think they can measure a team with velocity, they confuse velocity with acceleration.

Johanna Rothman

Some organizations achieve such exceptional levels of performance—time to market, quality, safety, affordability, reliability, dependability and adaptability—that it puts their rivals to shame. Though few in overall number, they exist in manufacturing, high tech, heavy industry, product design and production, and services, such as health care delivery. The select few are capable of generating and sustaining such high-velocity, broad-based, relentless improvement and innovation, that they achieve unparalleled levels of excellence. Learn what drives the success of these companies.

Creating High Velocity Organizations

Acceleration and maximum speed are terms used in speed development programs, and when developing a program, it is vital to differentiate between the two. This allows coaches to target their training to the capacity most important in their own sport.

NCSA

WHAT DOES ACCELERATION TELL YOU?

For how you use acceleration in practice, there are three scenarios to consider:

Positive acceleration. This is an indication that productivity may be rising on the team, although it does not indicate the cause of that increase.

Zero acceleration. This is an indication that the team’s productivity is remaining flat, and that perhaps they should consider doing retrospectives regularly and then act on the results from those retrospectives. Better yet they can “dial up” their process improvement efforts by adopting something along the lines of the Disciplined Agile Framework.

Negative acceleration. If the acceleration is negative then productivity on the team is going down, likely an indicator of quality and/or team work problems.

Disciplined Agile Delivery

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