The Principles of Product Development Flow

Second Generation Lean Product Development

(Companion website for book:

…the dominant paradigm for managing product development is wrong. Not just a little wrong, but wrong to its very core.” So begins Reinertsen in his meticulous examination of today’s product development practices. He carefully explains why invisible and unmanaged queues are the underlying root cause of poor product development performance. He shows why these queues form, and how they undermine the speed, quality, and efficiency in product development.

Then, he provides a roadmap for changing this. The book provides a well-organized set of 175 underlying principles in eight major areas. He shows you practical methods to:

Improve economic decisions
Manage queues
Reduce batch size
Apply WIP constraints
Accelerate feedback
Manage flows in the presence of variability
Decentralize control

The Principles of Product Development Flow will forever change the way you think about product development. Reinertsen starts with the ideas of lean manufacturing but goes far beyond them, drawing upon ideas from telecommunications networks, transportation systems, computer operating systems and military doctrine. He combines a lucid explanation of the science behind flow with a rich set of practical approaches. This is another landmark book by one of the foremost experts on product development.