Scrum is based on empirical process control, the pillars of which are transparency, inspection, and adaptation. This mostly means that instead of following a plan we observe how things are going and adjust accordingly. But this doesn’t mean that we can’t use theory. It’s just that when we do use theory we must verify it worked. Continue reading “Improve Your Scrum by Using Flow Thinking”
I’ve been having a very interesting two weeks. I would like to say that whenever I go into a client, I am always on, and always get my clients to see new opportunities. But I’d be lying.
However, for the last two weeks, that’s been what’s been happening… with five clients. While I feel I’ve been “on” and empathetic, that only explains half of it. Something else has been going on.
Here is what I think has been happening. In all of the cases, I started out with:
- Depicting a value stream representing what they’d like to happen
- Adding their team names, relating this to what people were doing now (making it less theoretical)
- Identifying the client’s problems in this ideal flow
At this point, they started asking how to solve their problems. Often, they are stumped about how to work with non-Agile teams or how to create predictability. They would ask, “How can you do this in Agile?” “What do you think about LeSS?” Essentially they were taking solutions they knew, or had heard of, and were trying them on.
It’s like shopping for clothes. Every company is shaped differently. There may be lots of clothes (solutions) out there that don’t always fit. That’s when you want to learn to be a tailor.
This is the first of a series on the implications of these insights.
I’ve been espousing (a nice word for rant) about the need for scaled learning methods and how 2-day classes have low retention. I’ve decided to integrate our On-the-Job Online Advanced Scrum Master / Kanban Coaching workshop with our Team-Agility Coach (our integration of Scrum/Kanban workshop.
Our online workshop is normally $595 but when you take our Scrum/Kanban master course we’ll include that for $200 a person. This means that our 2 day workshop followed by our 3 month program is $10,400 for 12 people ($500 for each additional person).
The onsite aspect of this integrates Scrum and Kanban. The three month program has me work with participants helping them apply what they’ve learned, as well as advanced topics of Agile, with their teams.
Please message me if you’re interested.
After writing about how our workshop avoids the issue of the 80-90% retention loss of normal trainings, covers twice the material of an Advanced CSM class, provides a performance support system and is provides timely coaching to its participants in their working with their teams, I had decided to raise the price from $595 to $895 – still a bargain compared to the common $1295 fee for an Advanced CSM class (not to mention the 2 days lost in an Advanced CSM class and likely travel time/cost).
But I’ve decided to go in the opposite direction. While the program is 3 months long, I will let people have access to the live coaching sessions included for 6 months along with the already annual access to the performance support system for a year.
I am committed to disrupting the current ineffective manner the industry now relies on for teaching people how to be Agile coaches. I am leading this workshop myself and promise it will change both how you look at Agile and Lean as well as your effectiveness.
We’re starting the next workshop this week, so please ping me if interested.
Scrum and Kanban are the two most popular Agile team-level methods available. While the difference between them is mostly thought to be sprint-based or flow-based, that is just one way in which they differ. Other significant differences include how to start, how to improve, and how people should be organized. They are based on different theories of how to manage software development work and whether you need to change your roles. And this creates other differences such include the amount of discipline to use them and the cultures in which they fit. Continue reading “Why Agile Coaches Need to Know Both Scrum and Kanban”
Two foundational tenets of Lean is leadership and systems thinking. Both relate to the fundamental philosophy that systems affect people significantly and that it is management’s responsibility to create the environment within which teams can work autonomously towards the goals of the company.
Scrum Masters somewhat already have a limited aspect of this role in that they are responsible for removing impediments to the team. This relates more to how the team interacts with those outside the team. But within the team, Agile team coaches also have the role of facilitating improvement of the system within which the team works.
I founded Net Objectives almost 20 yrs ago. I have always loved solving problems and having a chance to earn a living by helping others solve problems has been a very wonderful opportunity for me.
I have long thought that training methods have had to change significantly to keep up with the growing demand. It has in some ways – simulations, games, group exercises, etc. But basically, training is how it has always been. Especially in the area of growing Scrum Masters or Agile Team Coaches. In particular provide 2-4 days of coaching and then either let them go on their own or pay a lot of money for a coach. Continue reading “A personal goal of almost two decades manifested today”
If you are kicking off new teams there are two types of coaches you can bring in. While it’s useful to bring in someone who can actually help with the work, such as a technical or ATDD coach, when it comes to Scrum or Agile coaches it’s usually better to grow your own. There are several reasons for this:
Do you have devs who resist Scrum or don’t want to take the time to write better code? I can attest that with very few exceptions devs want to do the right thing in the right way. So why does it show up differently?
Several answers: Continue reading “Attend to what’s in it for them”
We have come to value:
- Individuals and interactions over PowerPoint presentations
- Actual increased ability over understanding frameworks
- Helping students over following a set curriculum
- Adjusting to needs of the student over preparing for certification
- Our highest priority is to increase the ability of the student through early and continuous learning
- Welcome changing needs of students, even late in the course. Agile courses harness change for the learners’ advantage
- Deliver small, absorb-able increments so the students actually learn
- Teach individuals on their own projects and in their own environment. If they stagnate, trust that they are doing their best and see how to help them.
- The ability to create software of value is the primary measure of progress.
- Agile teachings promote sustainable learning.
- Continuous attention to Agile skills enhances agility
- Simplicity–the art of maximizing the amount not required to teach–is essential.
- The best learning paths are those that allow for ability to emerge by attending to skills that enhance future learnings.
- At regular intervals, the consultant reflects on how his students are doing and adjusts the curriculum as needed.