Showing posts from 2016

Yet Another Guest Post - Obeya, the Big Room Practice - an Example for Scrum

I seem to be posting on other people's blogs more than my own these days.  This time I have prepared a piece for Luis Goncalves' blog about using the Lean Manufacturing practice of a 'big room' or 'war room'.  This tool can be used to house a number of other visual and thinking aids like metaphorical maps, value stream maps and A3s to help stakeholders, Product Owner(s) and Developers to work together to synchronize their efforts.

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Inner Source

I gave a lecture about this subject and posted it on Impala Studios' blog. It is also on YouTube:

Agile View of Human Nature - Learning

The second part of my series on the Agile View of Human Nature is a guest post about Learning for Luis Goncalves. In my experience as a coach and trainer for self-managing teams, I have found there are assumptions I make about people that I need for successfully getting to self-management.  They are often a point of contention and even conflict for people in the organisation that is going through change so it can help to be aware of them beforehand.
One of these things is 'learning is productive'.

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Time isn't Money

Traditional management wisdom tells us that 'time is money'. However, during the years I have come to find that there is no conflict between learning and productivity, even that productivity increases as learning increases. To me this is such a no-brainer that I have had some difficulty in understanding why some managers might be against learning.

In fact, on closer inspection, the managers I came across were not actually against learning, they are just against 'wasting time' and unaware that their push to save on wasteful activities such as study time was in fact destroying productivity.

How a yacht race turned me into a Scrum Master

Continuous Improvement, Autonomy, Validation - these terms are becoming so worn that they feel like business jargon. But if you have experienced the pain that Stagnation, Command & Control and Big Bang Deployment brings, you have ample reason not to look back.  The mild embarrassment that comes with joining the 'Agile cult' is greatly outweighed by the soul-numbing awfulness that is the alternative.

Although the above is my experience too, this is not that story.  I have also had experiences with Chaos - the inferno that regularly erupts in Startupland and in many Open Source projects.  It, not Agile, is the real antithesis to the frozen hell that is Waterfall/Taylorism/TheoryX.  This is not that story either.  I actually started appreciating what I now call the Agile mindset, on a sailing boat. 

15 minutes of fame


The Blue Elephant Principle

This is an easy to understand principle based on the well known children's 'pink elephant' conundrum.

Child A: I know something you can't do.

Child B: What?

Child A: Don't think of a pink elephant.

Child B: ...