Thursday, March 31, 2016

Scrum 201 Course: Agile-Scrum to the next level

I have a Scrum 201 course coming up in Atlanta. This is important, needed and useful. Why? Why Scrum 201? Lots of people have tried Scrum and everyone gets some reasonable benefit. But, you may not have gotten nearly the benefits possible. So, the purpose of this course is to enable you to get much greater benefits. For yourself, for your Team, and for your customers. Key Benefits:
  • Better results (you, the Team, the customers)
  • More fun (a key value)
  • More knowledge in a difficult set of domains.
  • The course plus the workshop is 3 days provides 22 SEUs toward the CSP and 22 PDUs.
  • More ancillary material (we give you this after the course).
The attendees: I recommend that you bring a whole team or teams. And some of the people around the team. Invite ScrumMasters, Coaches, POs, Managers, ... really everyone. Format: More participatory than most courses. Discussions, exercises, etc. Content: Some core content and some choices among a long list of things to consider. Core Content: The core aspects of Scrum, the basic values and principles. Scrum-Butt. A discussion about why we are not doing the core things more and better. Prioritized Content:
  • The underlying principles. Why Scrum works, and all the reasons why each practice is useful.
  • How to build a great team (real, dedicated, stable)
  • Removing impediments more aggressively
  • Improving the Product Owner
  • Business Value Engineering
  • The ready, ready criteria
  • The definition of done
  • Better release planning
  • The agile contract (fixed-price fixed-scope issues)
  • Improving the engineering practices
  • Advocating for the Agile Transformation
  • Making change happen (large and small)
  • Changing organizational culture
  • Scaling
  • Distributed Agile
  • Too many projects at once
  • How to manage in Agile
  • Managers and Metrics
  • Minimizing WIP
  • Knowledge workers and motivation
  • Smaller stories
And similar items. The list is long. Again, the aim here is to help you and your team get results at the next level. If you are interested, find a Scrum 201 course here.  

List of Courses and Workshops V12

Some of you may have seen our prior list of courses and workshops. Scrum 201 was added. We did this one years ago with Jeff Sutherland, and the need for it continues to grow. Many of these courses and workshops are available publicly, or could be done publicly about anywhere if there is some interest (5 people would be a good start and maybe an offer to help get us to 10....typical numbers). Or they can all be done in-house or privately. Please do not hesitate to contact us to discuss. will go to both Joe and Cassandra. Or call. Here is the list: Course and Workshop Offerings Ver12

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

2014 State of Agile Survey

Here are the survey results from Version One on the state of agile.  A pretty good job, I think. Many interesting observations in the survey. Let me highlight one. Under "Barriers to Further Agile Adoption", the top 3 answers were:
  • 44% ability to change organizational culture
  • 35% not enough personnel with the necessary agile experience
  • 34% general organizational resistance to change
Very similar things, I think. Certainly a pattern that has held fairly constant for years now.  Probably a pattern very common to all similar changes.

Saturday, March 5, 2016

A List Summarizing Scrum

We have a slightly improved version of our 'List Summarizing Scrum.' Not many changes, but a few minor ones. A list summarizing ScrumV6 How can this be useful? First, it is only a list, and prints onto one page (front and back). Two proposed uses:

Visit a team, and discuss the list fairly quickly.

The purpose is to enable a conversation that leads to a more successful use of the lean-agile-scrum ideas. The purpose is of course to decide where to improve next. What are [they] doing? What are [they] not doing? Any ideas [they] do not understand? Which areas do [they] need the most help?

Define Agile-Scrum at your company

The list is a start at defining what you mean by agile at your company. Perhaps you have a rule that says "If you are going to be 'agile,' you are expected to be doing the things on the list. If you need to make an exception, please speak to Dr. Freud." The notions behind this rule are several.
  • Often 'agile' has no definition, and this often leads to unprofessional agile.
  • Things can be crazy 'out there.' (Hence a smiling reference to Dr Freud.)
  • There is a need for each team to be different, so some allowance needs to be made for that, even at the 'framework' level.
  • Often teams are junior or do not understand agile fully. Or have mistaken ideas about agile. Once they talk to an expert, they see the 'errors of their prior thinking' and decide to do agile more professionally.
We recommend more the carrot than the stick. That is, people should be encouraged and supported in doing agile professionally, rather than punished when they 'do not comply.'