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Smiling team members holding up a trophy 7 Qualities of High-Performing Agile Teams

A high-performing agile team delivers exceptional results time and again, irrespective of the challenges they encounter. While their results may seem magical, lots of effort goes into building such a team, on the part of team members themselves and their leaders. Here are seven common qualities high-performance teams exhibit that you should strive for when building your own agile team.

Pooja Wandile
Drawing of a person ascending stairs Continuous Improvement Activities beyond the Retrospective

One of the principles behind the Agile Manifesto is “At regular intervals, the team reflects on how to become more effective, then tunes and adjusts its behavior accordingly.” Unfortunately, many associate that practice with performing team retrospectives at the end of a sprint, or periodically in kanban. But if you seek to build a high-performing team, there are more improvement activities you should consider adopting.

Jeffery Payne
Hand holding up a small globe 3 Ways Distributed Design Teams Can Stay Agile

Having a design team an ocean away presents some challenges, including misunderstandings that often result from cultural and linguistic differences, occasional time zone conflicts, and difficulty always keeping everyone in the loop regarding decisions that are being made. How do we combat those challenges? Here are three strategies that can help keep your distributed design team on track.

Ekaterina Kudievskaia
Circle with arrows showing a continuous process Continuous Digital: A New Mindset for New Work

Large companies traditionally have run software development projects so that after delivery, the project finished and the team dissolved. In the digital age, one might think the experience of running and delivering projects would be an advantage, but the legacy mindset and practices of corporate IT projects are actually a hindrance. Digital work needs to be ongoing, which requires a different management approach.

Allan Kelly
A coach training a baseball player What Kind of Agile Coach Should I Hire?

Having your organization make the mental shift necessary to adopt agile is the first important step in an agile transformation. But once you decide you want to change, now what? Should you attempt your agile adoption yourselves or hire an expert? Joel Bancroft-Connors details the benefits and downsides of going it alone and of using contract, consultant, and full-time agile coaches so you can decide what's best for you.

Joel Bancroft-Connors
Globe showing part of the world, photo by Duangphorn Wiriya The 4 C’s of Managing Distributed Agile Teams

Scrum works well for collocated teams, but working with distributed teams brings its own different challenges. There should be some controls in order to prevent instability, ambiguity, and tension from turning into chaos. As the ScrumMaster is the servant leader of the team, here are four important initiatives the ScrumMaster can take to guide their teams—the four C’s of managing distributed agile teams.

Ajeet Singh
Man holding string lights up to his face Embracing the Learning Curve in Software Development

In software development, we're constantly learning new skills because we have to. Technology and its associated best practices are constantly changing, but this is a good thing—it means our industry is evolving quickly. It also means we are constantly on the learning curve. Having a good mindset about continuously learning can help you go far in the software world.

David Bernstein
Icon of a dial showing good system performance Measuring the Performance of Your Operations Center

Many organizations have problems with consistently tracking and measuring system outages. Issues aren't logged, admins make changes to systems without going through change management, and a high number of issues turn out to be recurring problems. Implementing a performance measurement process calculates system reliability and can help you improve consistency.

Nels Hoenig
An illuminated lightbulb, photo by Johannes Plenio Agile Is Not a Process, It’s a Mindset

Agile transformation requires more than a change in process; it needs a change in mindset. In order to fully embrace agile and create a productive environment, you have to change how you think about priorities and failure. Priorities are decided proactively, not reactively, and failure is not punished, it is celebrated. Once you make this shift in perspective, you can reap the rewards of agile.

Lisa Rich
Sticky notes on cabinet doors Applying Agile to Life: Taking Retrospectives outside the Workplace

A lot of what agile teams do can be used effectively outside software development teams, and even outside the typical business organization. For instance, retrospectives and the practice of talking about what went well, what you should keep doing, and what can be improved can be applied anywhere—even to families. Read on to learn how to bring continuous improvement into your daily life.

Ben Kopel

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