Recently a reader posed the following value stream mapping lead time related question(s). My experience, after facilitating more value stream mapping activities than I care to remember, is that it's not an uncommon question. In fact, it's a very good question.

I provided a quick answer...supplemented by a very sophisticated graphic (recently enhanced, in red, based on a comment from Sandor).

Here's some often overlooked and misunderstood value stream mapping math.

The lead time ladder has two levels or “rungs.” The bottom rung is the process or processing rung on which the relevant process time is dropped down. This is usually pretty straightforward...unless there is a split or branch in the material, service or knowledge flow within the value stream.


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