What is LSC?

Lean Service Creation (LSC) is a systematic and adjustable way for multidisciplinary teams to create new services. LSC stems from Futurice’s experience with thousands of software projects and it stands on the shoulders of Lean Startup, Agile methods and Design thinking. Hence, LSC is more than a service design process. LSC is your Sherpa guide through all the phases of creating services from early ideation to finishing the last lines of code.

In practice LSC consists of a set of canvases that outline the relevant phases in a successful service creation process. Asking the right questions at the right time is by far the most important part of creating a product or service. Each LSC canvas poses a series of questions appropriate for a particular phase of the process. Keep in mind, however, that there is no orthodox order of canvases that you must obey and follow! Rather, LSC is open for modifications and should always be adjusted to the project at hand.

Importantly, LSC is much more than ink on paper. It is, first and foremost, about the mindset and practices that enable the creation of successful services. Hence, what counts at the end of the day is not whether you use LSC canvases, other canvases, or no canvases at all. What counts is whether you really are able to live and work by these basic principles:

Importantly, LSC is much more than ink on paper. It is, first and foremost, about the mindset and practices that enable the creation of successful services. Hence, what counts at the end of the day is not whether you use LSC canvases, other canvases, or no canvases at all. What counts is whether you really are able to live and work by these basic principles:

What is unique about LSC is that is has a social mission: to make the best practices of design & development freely accessible to everyone. That is why LSC is free to use, free to adapt, and free to grow. This has made LSC probably the most validated and used open source service creation process on the planet. It is used from Finland to Brazil and from big corporations and universities to startups.

What is unique about LSC is that is has a social mission: to make the best practices of design & development freely accessible to everyone. That is why LSC is free to use, free to adapt, and free to grow. This has made LSC probably the most validated and used open source service creation process on the planet. It is used from Finland to Brazil and from big corporations and universities to startups.

All for the team, the team for all.

Creativity flourishes in a team of multidisciplinary individuals that care for each other and trust each other. And it requires systematic curation of teamwork to find the team’s own best practices and routines. It also requires for the team to be open to new people and new ideas, i.e., for the team to leave the door open for others. Hierarchies and airtight social groups are poison to creativity and innovation. Caring and trust are the remedy.

Love the problem, not the solution

Us humans are rigged to create solutions and then falling in love with them because they are our babies. That’s why the world is full of technical solutions looking for a problem. You should fall in love with the problem, not the solution. A real problem will not disappear that easily, but you should be able to change your solution very quickly. Love your customer’s problems. Love your organisation’s business problems. Try millions of solutions that solve them both at the same time.

No matter what you do, be transparent about it.

Make abstract things tangible. Visualise complex dependencies. Make your decisions and rationale understandable. Make things transparent so that others can take part, co-create, chip in, help you, give feedback, and bring their expertise to the table. Being transparent is the only way to take your work forward and create something bigger than any individual can achieve.

Never stop iterating, never stop learning.

Every step in creating a new service is a learning point. No matter if you fail or succeed in your step, you should learn from it. And to learn is often to go backwards and iterate. To be able to go back and forth is to have good clear goals that leave room for iteration. The enemy of iteration is a detailed project plan that forces the team to worship micro-level targets that are far removed from reality. The sign of a good goal and target is that they are also iterated and changed as the team learns and gets smarter. Demand broad clear goals from your executives that leave room for learning and iteration.

See the forest, see the trees, spot the squirrel.

There is always a bigger picture. Every project is a part of a larger objective. If you can’t see the big picture, you don’t understand how your work fits in, and ultimately, you don’t know what is the required impact of your work. Once you know the big picture, you can draw a line between the details of your work and the broader objectives. This gives you the superpower to bind high-level strategy and detailed implementation seamlessly together.