Thursday, April 04, 2019

Sprint Planning - How it works.. Why it works

This is a SoundNotes podcast that we just put up on LeadingAgile. The intent is to provide a basic foundational explanation of what Sprint Planning is, why it is so important, how it works, etc. (And why no one should be trying to do it before the Sprint starts.)

Click here to check it out

Wednesday, April 03, 2019

System of Delivery vs. System of Transformation

Click here for the podcast

When people talk about Agile, they often talk about the approach they are taking: Scrum, Kanban, Extreme Programming, SAFe, LeSS, DAD, Nexus, etc. These and the other frameworks and methodologies that could be considered to fall under the Agile umbrella are Systems of Delivery because they are techniques for delivering.

There's often an assumption that if we adopt the System of Delivery, our organization will Transform to Agile. Sometimes this happens, but often, organizations need more than a System of Delivery. They need a way to go about helping their organization evolve into a state where it's capable of realizing the benefits of the various Systems of Delivery. This journey from your current state, into a state that's capable of fully leveraging the System of Delivery, may actually require a System of Transformation.

In this episode of SoundNotes, our CEO & Founder, Mike Cottmeyer spends some time with Dave digging into what a System of Transformation is, why this is different than a System of Delivery, how the two are connected, and why having a System of Transformation is such a critical part of your organization's ability to realize the benefits of taking an Agile approach to delivering work.

Click here for the podcast

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Sunday, March 31, 2019

Insights from two days of Personal Kanban training w/ Amitai Schleier

A few weeks ago I was lucky enough to be able to take a Personal Kanban training with Jim Benson and Tonianne DeMaria. It was an incredibly insightful two days. 

Here is a post and podcast where Amitai Schleier and I talk about the class, what we learned from Jim and Tonianne, insights and takeaways from both the class and Personal Kanban in general,  and why we are both continually working on refining the systems we use to plan and manage our own work.

It was super cool to get to meet Amitai in person.  I had previously only met him virtually when he and Troy Lightfoot taught Rachel Gertz  and I how to do Mob Programming. If you'd like to check out that podcast, click here.

Sunday, March 24, 2019

How Buzzwords and Jargon Impact Your Team w/ Tyler Grant

I have a new episode of The Reluctant Agilist that features Tyler Grant in a conversation on how using buzzwords and jargon can negatively impact your team members and their ability to deliver.

You can find the podcast on my Reluctant Agilist blog on ProjectManagement.com

What is the worth of a good Product Owner? w/ Tim Wise

Tim Wise and I responded to a question from a student who worked in an org that saw no benefit from having Product Owners. Tim and I talk through the likely impact, how to cope with not having a PO, and why an engaged Product Owner is so critical to your team's ability to deliver.

You can find the podcast interview on LinkedIn.

Sunday, March 17, 2019

Reluctant Agilist - Student QA: Changing the Sprint Commitment / Failing Sprints w/ Eric Tucker

In this episode of the Reluctant Agilist, Certified Scrum Trainer and Agile Coach, Eric Tucker, and I talk through two related questions that came from students in my classes:
  • What is the best way to inject defects into a sprint?
  • How do you reset expectations with stakeholders if you are going to fail a sprint?

During the interview Eric and talk about why adding/removing work from a sprint is generally not something you want to do, but what you should do if it is unavoidable. We also touch on what to do if the team discovers that they will not be able to deliver on their sprint forecast, why you want to make sure the stakeholders know ahead of time and what some other options might be. 

You can find the interview on my Reluctant Agilist blog on ProjectManagement.com

How Do I Use Scrum on Data Warehouse Projects? w/ Dave Nicolette (3/14/19)

Dave Nicolette shared some time in this episode of SoundNotes to talk about how to use Agile practices when you are working on projects like enterprise data migrations.

(3/14/19)
http://bit.ly/2JbuEpT

Prioritizing the Work to Maximize Return w/ Dennis Stevens (3/7/19)

Part 3 of 3 of my interviews with Dennis Stevens on how to maximize the return produced by teams within the organization.

(3/7/19)
http://bit.ly/2IYohGF

Coordinating Work with Agile and Waterfall Teams in a Mixed Environment w/ AJ Sanford (2/28/19)

This episode of SoundNotes features LeadingAgile's AJ Sanford. It came from a common question in CSM and CSPO classes. How do you coordinate work when you have waterfall and Agile teams within an organization that depend on each other. (2/28/19)
http://bit.ly/2IIuSVg

Designing an Organization that Manages Value w/ Mikkel Ladegaard (2/21/19)

LeadingAgile's Mikkel Ladegaard sat down for an interview about favor economies and how to establish clarity throughout the organization on what work takes priority and what work presents the greatest value for the business.

http://bit.ly/2T09nDB
(2/21/19)

Letting Go of the Waterfall, Embracing Agile, and Mixed Martial Arts w/ Brandon Dudley (2/14/19)

A SoundNotes interview with LeadingAgile Senior Consultant Brandon Dudley on his transition from waterfall to Agile and how Brazilian Jiu Jitsu has impact his approach to working with clients on Agile transformation. (2/14/19)

http://bit.ly/2N4dmt8

The Language of Loss and The Language of Gain w/ Mike Cottmeyer & Andrew Young (2/7/19)

How you talk about transformation can have a big impact on how people approach the work. This interview with LeadingAgile's Mike Cottmeyer and Andrew Young focuses on the language of loss and the language of gain. (http://bit.ly/2MT1c6r)

http://bit.ly/2MT1c6r

The Value of Improving Your Technical Practices w/ Rich Dammkoehler (1/31/19)

This episode of SoundNotes features, LeadingAgile Technical Consultant, Rich Dammkoehler in a conversation about why it is so important to make sure your organization is focused on improving their technical practices.
http://bit.ly/2GeHGQE

Measuring the Impact of Change in Agile w/ Jeff Howey (1/14/19)

An interview with LeadingAgile's Jeff Howey on how to measure the impact of change in an Agile organization. (1/14/19)
http://bit.ly/2FMULRv


Agile Estimation - A SoundNotes Tutorial (1/17/19)

A quick tutorial on the LeadingAgile site on how to do Agile Estimation (1/17/19)
http://bit.ly/2FM3kvg

Wednesday, March 06, 2019

Meet Chief Scrum Master Melissa Boggs!

I had the opportunity to interview the Scrum Alliance's new Chief Scrum Master, Melissa Boggs. If you'd like to learn more about Melissa, her background and what it is like to be the first Chief Scrum Master at one of the world's largest Agile organizations, you can find it here.

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

How to earn Scrum Educational Units (SEUs) w/ TJay Gerber

If you have questions about how to earn Scrum Educational Units (SEUs) in order to maintain your Scrum Alliance certification you can learn all about it in my interview with TJay Gerber, Global Certification Manager and Education Department Product Owner for the Scrum Alliance which is available on ProjectManagement.com and can be found here:

https://www.projectmanagement.com/blog-post/51929/How-to-earn-Scrum-Educational-Units-w--TJay-Gerber

Saturday, February 16, 2019

Jason Tanner - Becoming a Certified Scrum Trainer

I've posted a new episode of the Reluctant Agilist on Project Manqgement.com that features Jason Tanner, CEO of Applied Frameworks and Certified Scrum Trainer. The interview focuses on the process Jason uses to help Certified Scrum Trainer candidates work towards their certification. If you aren't familiar with the process of becoming a CST, it is not an easy path. For many people, it takes 3-5 years from the time they start working on it, until they reach their goal.

You can find the podcast, contact info and more at:

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

The Evolving Role of the PMO in an Agile Organization - Catching Up With Jesse Fewell

I got a chance to catch up with Jesse Fewell at the start of 2019. In this Reluctant Agilist podcast Jesse and I talk about how project management continues to evolve as a result of the introduction of Agile and how the PMO continues to refine the role it plays in an organization that is making the transition to Agile. The whole conversation draws from the fact that we both got our start in traditional project management and were two of the initial people focused on helping to build a bridge between PMI and the Scrum Alliance.

As an added note, Jess is now the only person I have ever interviewed who has quote Suicidal Tendencies and then talked about reading the Bible within the space of 5 minutes on a podcast.

You can find the podcast on The Reluctant Agilist blog on ProjectManagement.com

Monday, January 14, 2019

Developing a PMO that is Actually Agile - Hearst Digital Media

Hearst Digital Media has an actual, real life, fully functioning AGILE PMO!

Developing a PMO that is Actually Agile - Hearst Digital Media

This is one of the most inspiring interviews I have had the chance to do in a long time. It features a conversation with Michelle Dennis, Director of Product Management, and Jacquelyn Talpalar, Director of Agile Operations for Hearst Digital Media. During the podcast we discuss what the've gone through over the past 4 years to establish an Agile PMO, the challenges they faced along the way, what makes it work and their advice for others who are on this path.

You can find the interview on The Reluctant Agilist blog on ProjectManagement.com.

Thursday, January 10, 2019

Kicking off 2019 with Mike Cottmeyer

Shiny new episode of LeadingAgile Soundnotes... my interview with Mike Cottmeyer on what he's focused on for 2019 and what to expect in the Agile space.

https://www.leadingagile.com/podcast/kicking-off-2019-with-mike-cottmeyer/

Monday, January 07, 2019

Comparative Agility with Jorgen Hesselberg


“Agile is not something you become, Agile is something you become more of.”


For organizations that are engaged in Agile Transformation, it is often very challenging to get a sense of where you are with respect to successfully adopting a new way of working. Comparative Agility is a tool that has been designed to help Agile coaches and organizations get a deeper understanding of their progress towards Agile transformation. 

In this interview, Jorgen Hesselberg, co-founder of Comparative Agility, and I discuss how the tool has evolved since it was created in 2008 and how it is now being used by coaches and organizations to not only understand how their transformation is going, but how they are doing compared to others within their vertical, as well. We also talk about the work that Comparative Agility has been doing with the Scrum Alliance and how the tool has been extended to include things like Security and DevOps, in addition to discussing Jorgen’s book “Unlocking Agility.”

Links

If you’d like to check out Comparative Agility, you can find it here: https://www.comparativeagility.com
If you’d like to read “Unlocking Agility”, you can find it here: https://amzn.to/2setHly

Contacting Jorgen