Development is much more global, leveraging widely diverse and dispersed teams.

Digitization has enabled product development to cross multiple time zones and continents. Team learning is crucial for organizations to build and proliferate knowledge, for individuals to grow and develop, and for product development to effectively deliver innovation to the market. As teams have become more far flung, the boundaries of innovation have expanded, and the reach of intelligence increased through diversity; increasing the value teams can deliver.

Product development is a team sport where collaboration is crucial. Distance has increased the importance of structured interaction and systems thinking among teams. There needs to be a defined process by which individuals around the globe can express, share, and explore views on complex issues and build mental models of the current reality as well as their collective desired future state — without questions of personality, ownership, or dictatorial authority.

Distance, time zones, and individual diversity have made communication much more difficult. Not just due to differences in language, but also cultural and ideological differences. We have found the principles of lean product development to be instrumental in aligning people in their efforts to maximize the organizational output, create harmony, and provide joy in work.

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