Obeya Room

What is Obeya Room ? and how it help ?

Obeya (Oobeya) is a Japanese word for ‘the room’, the intended usage of this word is for large (big) room or War room. Obeya is a Lean concept developed by Toyota, that focuses on setting up a physical space where teams strategize, plan, progress their projects. It’s a room where ideas are generated, collaborate with management and stakeholders.

The idea behind is any extended team members ( example: management team,..etc) walks into a room and everything they need to know to make decisions and take action to make program or organization more successful is right there on the wall, every time, always !!. furthermore, Obeya rooms are presented in such a way that one can take their team in to the room and instantly explain their strategic context and discuss their contributions, risk & impediments and results with team. The leadership or management have to ensure visit or do Gemba in Obeya room at-least once a week.

Sample Obeya room setup:

Obeya Room

Never try and make a ‘Big Bang’ Obeya in one shot… Have to build Obeya room incrementally and iteratively !!. Conduct sessions to prepare good visual chart for each topic ( example: Impediments, Hot-Bugs, Feature board, ….etc.) and refine them frequently as needed.

When Obeya Rooms Fail ?

  • Obeya room is built ONLY to help managers.
  • LACK of motivated individuals in team.
  • Leadership/Managers DON’T address or help the team concerns or challenges
  • Discussions and brainstorming on different topics in Obeya room is NOT done by team of Cross-function members.
CategoriesAgile Leadership

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