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Myth 34: You’re Empowered Because I Say You Are

Do your managers truly own their decision making or are they only "empowered" to come to you for approval of every idea and dollar spent? If you don't trust your team leaders to make decisions, how can you expect stakeholders to? Setting boundaries and defining expectations are two ways to empower managers and encourage initiative, giving them the opportunity to gain your trust.

Johanna Rothman's picture Johanna Rothman
Overcoming Resistance to an Agile Process Rollout

Many engineering leaders and agile coaches believe that transitioning to agile is simply a matter of process training and expert advice. But frequently, it means that deeply ingrained habits need to be changed. This article identifies eight steps that address the wider organizational shifts implied by agile and will help create buy-in from your team.

Jonathan Levene's picture Jonathan Levene
Mob Programming: A Whole Team Approach

Mob programming is a software development approach where the whole team works on the same thing at the same time, in the same space, and at the same computer. Collaborating like this can have great benefits for everyone involved. Here, Woody Zuill details some practices his team uses to make this collaboration work for them.

Woody Zuill's picture Woody Zuill
Slipping into ScrumBut

ScrumMasters don't like to talk about their own troubles or failures, even though they say it’s good to fail. They don’t like to admit it happens to them, too. Sometimes it just creeps up. If you've started relaxing your Scrum principles and feel yourself slipping into ScrumBut, take hope: You and your team can recommit.

Natalie Warnert's picture Natalie Warnert
Why Communication Is Key to the Agile Process

We should all be much more active about improving our communication skills to be better at our jobs, but also (and more importantly) to make the most of the people around us. Whether you’re giving or receiving information verbally or through writing, no matter what your job is, communication is key.

Emma Armstrong's picture Emma Armstrong
Management Myth 33: We Need a Quick Fix or a Silver Bullet

A new approach to projects or a new tool is not a quick fix or a silver bullet. Too often, you have ingrained, systemic problems that require a cultural change. That doesn’t mean a new approach or a new tool won’t help. It can. But you also need to adjust the environment that caused the problems in the first place.

Johanna Rothman's picture Johanna Rothman
A Different Approach to the Agile Product Backlog

When one organization first shifted to agile, the team had trouble with maintaining the product backlog. No one could agree on priorities for items, they didn't know which item should be groomed next, and the backlog wasn't transparent to everyone. This team found a better method that works for them.

Jennifer Carder's picture Jennifer Carder
How Women Can Help Build Better Agile Teams

The IT industry is dominated by men. But you shouldn't hire more women just to lessen the gender gap. The ultimate goal is better teams, and it just so happens that hiring more women tends to help build better teams anyway. Companies should reexamine what traits they value in job candidates.

Pawel Brodzinski's picture Pawel Brodzinski
Why If I Could Do Only One Thing, It Would Be Retrospectives

Introducing a full agile framework can be daunting and cumbersome. Instead, try beginning with the method's core focus: continuous improvement. Retrospectives are the starting point of your agile journey and can help you solve the most immediate problems in your process, leading you down the road of process improvement.

Sune Lomholt's picture Sune Lomholt
How to Plan and Execute Programs without Shooting Agile in the Foot

Program planners in IT organizations have a dilemma: On one hand, their agile teams tell them that if requirements are defined up front, agile teams cannot operate; but on the other hand, the program’s budget and scope need to be defined so that resources can be allocated and contracts can be written for the work. How does one reconcile these conflicting demands?

Clifford Berg's picture Clifford Berg

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