agile transition

Conference Presentations

Five Dysfunctions of Agile Teams

Is your agile team not reaching their potential? They may be suffering from internal dysfunctions that contribute to less than optimal results. When core dysfunctions are left to fester, the end result may be a late or failed project-and the cause will be chalked up to “that's just the way agile sometimes is.” Based on his coaching work with hundreds of agile teams, Bob Hartman presents an agile team dysfunction model and identifies the five most common dysfunctions-Leave me in my silo, When we communicate it’s only by email, Others make commitments for us, Don't blame me because I didn't do it, and Worship the heroes. Bob shows how to determine dysfunctions, communicate them, and, most importantly, help teams get past them. Learn how teams can reach their full potential and even achieve greatness once they fully understand their weaknesses, and embrace practices and efforts necessary to overcome them.

Bob Hartman, Agile For All
Agile Leadership: Where Do Managers Fit?

When adopting agile software development, many of the agile roles and practices focus on the team and its members. So, where does that leave the managers-project managers, software managers, IT directors, etc? Based on his many years as an agile coach, Skip Angel answers these questions and explores the role of leadership in software development. Skip discusses common challenges agile team face and how managers within the organization are needed to address those challenges. Explore areas in which both the team and the organization value leadership: team structure and reporting; coordination among teams and teams of teams; team space, facilities, and infrastructure; mentoring and training; and optimizing processes, especially where they touch other parts of the organization.

Skip Angel, BigVisible Solutions
Growing and Nurturing Coaching for Sustained Agility

Where agile thrives, great coaching is present. Whether formal or informal, coaching is a key ingredient for successful and lasting agility. Unfortunately, many people call themselves coaches yet they fail to do any real, helpful coaching. David Hussman presents tactics for growing coaching in your organization. He begins by focusing on finding coaching candidates-what skills and attributes they need-and then engaging them to grow their coaching capabilities. From there, David walks through pragmatic coaching tools that foster appropriate ceremony and meaningful coaching opportunities. He teaches you how to develop a process that helps teams draw on their experience while overcoming their unique constraints. Leave with new ideas for helping with backlogs, working out estimation challenges, keeping stand up meetings lively, and getting developers to stop just talking about testing and really start doing it.

David Hussman, DevJam
Getting Executive Management on the Agile Bus

Much of the focus on agile transitions is on the team. However, the business side of an organization and the managers that lead it are not particularly interested in the mechanisms of agile teams and processes. They want faster time to market, schedule flexibility, predictability, visibility, better quality, and useful metrics. In other words, they want to know about things that help them get to success and that show when they've achieved it. Alan Shalloway describes agile development from an executive's point of view. Rather than focusing on the "how" of agile, he talks about the "why." Alan highlights ways for you to communicate to executive management how agile teams enable what they are trying to accomplish. Find out how improving time-to-delivery can drive higher quality into software development while driving waste out of the development organization.

Alan Shalloway, Net Objectives
Practices, Principles, and Values: Moving Beyond Dogma to What Works

The concept of software process improvement is not new. Many methods have been defined to conduct and pursue improvement. We never seem to lack for “improvement” ideas, as if they are fresh and exciting-which they often are not. Maybe that's because so much of what has been espoused through the years has not worked. Hillel Glazer examines long-held assumptions about process improvement, proposes plausible flaws, and reveals new levels of understanding that have facilitated breakthroughs in high performance. Hillel looks at what happens when there is too much focus on practices, when the underlying principles aren't honored, and when basic values aren't internalized. We see too much arguing over practices instead of working toward results-too much worrying about compliance to some dogma instead of moving forward with what’s really working.

Hillel Glazer, Entinex, Inc.
End-to-End Agile Planning: Oxymoron or Powerful Release Planning Method?

It's a very common pattern. Agile methods don't seem to specify much in the way of preparation or strategies for project planning-so teams simply dive-in and start iterating toward a solution to their business problems. In some contexts, such as small-scale simple projects, this works just fine. However, what if your project is more complex? How do you determine a budget when you have a distributed or larger-scale project and no real requirements? In many real-world contexts, establishing a consistent and thoughtful baseline project plan can be an incredibly powerful contributor to your ultimate success. The good news is that you can do end-to-end planning and still "be agile." Bob Galen shows how to use the Crystal Clear's Blitz Planning approach, user story mapping, and other end-to-end planning techniques to establish a "proper beginning" and define a holistic map for your agile projects.

Bob Galen, iContact
Agile vs. Agility: Doing vs. Being

To be agile or not to be agile … that is not the question anymore; agile adoption is on the rise and there seems no turning back. The real question is whether we are focused on boiling agile down to a list of prescribed practices or are we dedicated to embracing and internalizing the core values and principles of agility. Ahmed Sidky explores why “doing” agile over “being” agile could be the reason some organizations do not produce hyper-performing agile teams. He challenges the current thinking of many agile proponents and suggests a solution to the problem. Ahmed offers a value-based roadmap for agile adoption consisting of five steps-collaborative, evolutionary, integrated, adaptive, and encompassing-to help teams and organizations embrace principles over practices. Ahmed helps you crystallize your thinking about the issue of agile vs.

Ahmed Sidky, Santeon
Mastering Dependencies in Your Product Backlog

Agile teams may unintentionally assume significant risk and excessive rework by not addressing dependencies in the product backlog. While the business defines the minimum requirements needed to deliver value and when to deliver that value-delivery dependencies-the agile team determines the necessary sequence of development-development dependencies. The challenge for everyone is balancing delivery and development dependencies. Taking a holistic approach to the product backlog enables the team to evaluate the impact of these dependencies and, as needed, adjust release and iteration plans. Ellen Gottesdiener and Mary Gorman share techniques they have used to master dependencies in backlogs.

Ellen Gottesdiener, EBG Consulting
Estimating Business Value

Agility focuses on delivering business value to the customers as rapidly as possible. So, how does the team assure the business that it’s delivering the most value possible in the right priority? It’s more than prioritizing user stories or estimating development effort with story points. Through presentation and interactive exercises, Ken Pugh explains how to estimate and track business value throughout an agile project. He presents two methods for quickly estimating business value for features and stories, and shows the relationship between business value estimates and story point estimates. Ken illustrates how to chart business value for iteration reviews and demonstrates what estimates really mean in both dollars and time. On a larger scale, Ken shows business value as a portfolio management tool for prioritizing feature development across many projects.

Ken Pugh, Net Objectives
Scaling Agile Adoption Beyond the Development Team

Given the success of agile at the development team level, managers are exploring the possibility of implementing agile methodologies across the entire product lifecycle organization-beyond software development. Managers who have launched such adoption efforts are uncovering many myths, misperceptions, and obstacles that derail their efforts before they really get started. Product delivery organizations fail to become agile because they don't really understand what makes agile teams work. Mike Cottmeyer describes an agile adoption roadmap that begins with an individual team and then demonstrates how multiple teams can work together to deliver more complex projects and portfolios. He expands the agile concept beyond the development team and shows how organizations can optimize their value stream across the enterprise.

Michael Cottmeyer, Pillar Technology


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