People & Teams

Articles

Coach guiding a team Empower Your Agile Team in 4 STEPs

New agile teams often start projects after some brief training on the Agile Manifesto and agile frameworks. But without additional coaching, these teams will struggle to deliver continuous value to their clients. Teams should be coached on how to tackle unexpected Situations, use appropriate Tools, conduct agile Events, and adopt appropriate agile Practices—four agile STEPs.

Ajeet Singh's picture Ajeet Singh
Product owner standing in front of a wall of sticky notes 3 Elusive Qualities of a Great Product Owner

When it comes to guiding the development of a product and ensuring you’re building what the user actually needs, a product owner is the most important hire for the team. There’s just one problem: A good product owner can be really hard to find. The characteristics that make a good product owner are elusive, but here are three qualities you should prioritize in your search.

John Yorke's picture John Yorke
Person solving a Rubik's cube Eliminate Fake Certainty and Solve the Real Problem

Too often, customers have a “fake certainty” about the problems they want to solve. They might not have defined the real problem, but they have frequently defined the solution anyway. The risk is that we might build the wrong thing. When the product owner works with the customers to define the problem, then works with the team to define the solution, everyone can win.

Johanna Rothman's picture Johanna Rothman John Le Drew
Testing team standing around a computer and smiling 3 Methods for Better Communication and More Effective Testing

Successful delivery of software requires the entire team, so it’s imperative that everyone choose their words carefully so they convey what they really mean, are sensitive to others’ feelings, and consider all aspects of a problem. Here are three questions to remember when communicating about your software testing projects to ensure you’re considering the power of words.

Ajay Balamurugadas's picture Ajay Balamurugadas
A developer and a tester looking at each other warily Examining Cross-functionality Bias on Software Development Teams

Cross-functionality means having all the necessary people and skills on one self-organizing team. Unfortunately, the execution of cross-functionality is often biased. The main traps we fall into are misunderstanding the value of specialization, hero worship, and not “walking the cross-functional talk” as organizations. Let’s examine each of these pitfalls in the hope that your teams may avoid them.

Natalie Warnert's picture Natalie Warnert
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's picture 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's picture 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's picture Ekaterina Kudievskaia
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's picture 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's picture David Bernstein

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