My shower stopped working properly. The flow rate was low, the water temperature would fluctuate between cold and really hot, and would stay hot even when the hot tap was turned off. It bothered me for days but I couldn’t figure out what was going wrong.

Then it occurred to me to rub the rubber nozzles where the water comes out of the shower head. This broke the limescale that had built up and allowed the water to flow freely. The water flowing freely stopped the hot water from backing up into the cold water, and the hot and cold mixed to a constant water temperature.

I was pretty pleased with myself that such a simple solution fixed the problem, and couldn’t help thinking that there is a bit of a metaphor there in removing blockages to allow value to flow and so reducing problems upstream. How do we give more thought to maximising flow and the leading edge of value delivery to our customers? How do we understand more about the value that our customers get, where and when they get it? How can we remove the blockers that prevent us from delivering value at the best flow rate for the customer?