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Work In Progress Limits: Getting Started with Agile Marketing Navigator

MarTech » Agile Marketing » Ongoing Work Limits: Getting Started with Agile Marketing Navigator

We recently introduced you to Agile Marketing Navigator, a flexible framework for navigating agile marketing for marketers, by marketers navigating agile marketing in articles new method. The Navigator has four main components: Collaborative Planning Workshop, Launch Cycle, Key Practices, and Roles. Within these categories, several subsections are available for implementation.

In a recent article, we covered collaborative planning workshops and launch cycles. Now we’ll dive into the third of the six key practices: work in progress.

Marketers overloaded

Let Let’s face it, marketers have a big problem – they have too much work. An important consequence of having too much work happening at once is that a lot of work is started but not really completed.

In agile marketing, the main goal is to deliver work quickly so that we can get feedback to inform future work. Yet when marketers swirl through a sea of ​​content creation soup or email overload, work tends to get bogged down somewhere in the internal workflow and can’t be delivered as quickly as possible.

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Know what the team is currently working on

Work in progress (WIP) Limits derived from popular workflow frameworks Kanban, a practice that helps teams understand optimal workflow.

Let’s say you’re a content marketing team and you’re using an agile tool like Workfront or JIRA to visualize your work. Teams are noticing that they can move work from “in progress” to “done” more efficiently, and limiting the amount of work in progress at any given time may help them become a better performing team.

To get started, teams should spend a few weeks tracking how much they are currently doing in practice each day and come up with an average. Here’s an easy way to calculate the team’s current WIP by noting what’s on the team board:

agile marketing workflow18


37agile marketing workflow




sky Number of work items in progress
6 9


812 9









Average WIP10agile marketing workflow

Calculate what the team is currently doing, add the sums in co and divide by 14 to get an average of 10. This means the team has an average of 10 projects in progress at any one time.

WIP Restriction Experiment

Now that the team knows their starting point, they can experiment by setting different WIP limits. Since they know they are not optimally efficient with 10 work items in progress at any given time, they should agree to set a lower limit, say 8, and experiment over the next few weeks, not allowing More than 8 content immediately.

After this two-week period, the team should discuss how it went. Are they seeing any improvement in the amount of work done? If it is, they may have found an optimal number. If they think it’s still too high, they can try another cycle with a lower number.

It may take multiple experiments to understand the team’s WIP limit, and that number may change over time. The point is that teams are empowered to set themselves up and work together to be more efficient.

This is not a beginner approach, so I only recommend working with teams that have been working together in agile marketing for six months or more and have mastered the basics try this. This practice is more about distilling and optimizing a relatively experienced agile marketing team for efficiency.

Views expressed in this article Views of a guest author, not necessarily MarTech. The authors of the staff are listed here.

About the author

Stacey knows what it’s like to be a marketer, after all, she’s one of the few agile coaches and trainers out there. After graduating from journalism school, she worked as a content writer, strategist, director, and adjunct marketing professor. In 2012, when she was experimenting with an ad agency client, she became passionate about agile as a better way to work. Since then, she has been a Scrum master, agile coach, and has helped teams around the world with multiple agile transformations. Stacey speaks at several agility conferences, has more names than she can remember, and enjoys practicing agility at home with her family. A lifelong Minnesotan, she recently moved to North Carolina, where she’s busy learning how to cook couscous and say “y’all.”

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