Stress reduction and focus-finding with kanban: managing self and workflows in small steps Winter 2023

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Class Details

This course will give students guided instruction and direct practice in using a series of tools intended to help them reduce their stress, improve their focus, and get more out of their learning time. This is the daily practice of personal Kanban and Kata. Using the flipped classroom model, students will spend their time outside of class encountering learning content so that their time in class can be spent practicing and doing the skills of Kanban-Kata, so as to apply the tools of stress reduction to their own lives. As they learn these valuable tools and processes, rooted in an Agile framework, students will also be learning a set of sought after career skills that many companies (most of the technology and finance sectors) hire consultants to deliver to industry leaders. Because of the premium employers put on this collaborative skill-set in the current hiring market, students will benefit from this course not only by learning a proven way to decrease stress and increase focus in their own lives but by establishing a foundation of readiness to enter team-based work environments upon graduation from Williams. Students will read selections from the following works: J. Smart, Sooner, Safer, Happier; M. Rother, KATA; L. Tilman, Agility; Benson & Barry, Personal Kanban Mapping Work Navigating Life; C. Walker, From Contempt to Curiosity; and S. Tendon, Hyper-Productivity for Knowledge Work Performance. Students will leave the course with the following abilities: 1. Better visualize your work to clear your mind: Create your workspace; Modify your workspace as circumstances change; Sort your work items. 2. Better flow your work to create progress: Leverage Work In Progress [WIP] limits; Break stressors down into smaller pieces. 3. Better attack your challenges: Understand current state of challenge; Define target state/resolution. Students leave the course able to continue running their personal organization system thereafter.
The Class: Format: lecture
Limit: 15
Expected: NA
Class#: 1365
Grading: pass/fail only
Requirements/Evaluation: Final project or presentation.
Prerequisites: Willingness to try new things and to welcome a sense of play in the pursuit of knowledge.
Enrollment Preferences: seniors, juniors, sophomores, then first-years
Unit Notes: For more than two decades Simon has supported learners and leaders from a range of backgrounds and institutions in reducing stress, creating focus, and collaboratively accelerating their learning. He believes our obstacles are also our way forward.
Attributes: EXPE Experiential Education Courses
STUX Winter Study Student Exploration
WELL Winter Study Wellness

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