This post originally appeared on the SoftEd website.
One of the advantages of an Agile way of working is the fact that you can inspect and adapt and find the best tool or practice for the job. Unfortunately, though, when you are learning or looking for guidance, the myriad of frameworks and techniques can make the transformation to a new way of working seem very daunting. It is therefore no surprise that frameworks that promise to offer a way to make sense of the complexity continue to rise in popularity in organisations all over the world.
If we go back to the roots of Agility and the creation of the Manifesto for Agile Software Development back in 2001, it was a meeting of the people who were the creators of the key approaches and practices at that time – Scrum, Extreme Programming, DSDM, Crystal and Adaptive Software Development amongst others. The key to the Manifesto was that it was written to be framework (and organisation) agnostic and that it captured the key values and principles of agility, to the extent that it is still universally agreed that this document is both the definition and core of Agile. Even the newer interpretations of the basics, such as Modern Agile and Heart of Agile, still borrow heavily on the core.
When I started my Agile journey in the early 2000’s we were still inventing a lot of the practices that we take for granted today. My early experiences were mostly a hybrid of Extreme Programming and Scrum, with a mix of other practices built in and finding the tool for the job and the team at the time. To me, Agile has always been about the core values and principles with a large umbrella of practices and frameworks underneath it. This doesn’t mean that following a framework like Scrum is wrong, it’s just knowing when something more or different is required. This is exactly what led to scaling approaches like LeSS, Scrum At Scale and SAFe and even for Ken Schwaber (one of the creators of Scrum) to define the term “Scrum And“.
One of the great things about Agile and its community is it is a place where ideas can be tried and shared. The Agile Alliance, the non-profit organisation formed out of the Agile Manifesto to promote and bring together the Agile community (of which I am proud to be an active member and current board member and secretary) refers to this as the “the big tent” – a place where any person of idea that subscribes to the values and principles is welcome. This big tent or umbrella was one of inspirations for a conference talk I gave a few years ago called “40 Agile Methods in 40 Minutes” – the visualisation of which has been used widely in the community ever since.
This big tent approach is one of the core reasons I was drawn to working with SoftEd, initially over 10 years ago as a client and customer, then later as a contract trainer and in more recent years as the Global Agility Lead. As one of the world’s leading ICAgile course providers, the suite of world quality courses are based on teaching the “big tent” of agility with a focus on giving attendees the best tools and techniques they need to be successful. The same approach applies to coaching engagements where the focus is on capability uplift and successful outcomes.
There is a myriad of techniques and practices and ways to get support on your Agile journey. If you are looking for training or coaching support that puts a focus on getting the right outcomes rather than a strict adherence to a framework, then make sure you check out the range services that SoftEd has to offer.
- Author of machine Language programming books “Programming the Apple IIGS in Assembly Language” and “Programming the 65816“
- Managing the Finder team at Apple – hired for stellar C++ coding ability and customer empathy
- Software development is a team sport – including QA, a dedicated product manager / product owner and designers
- After Dark and Flying Toasters at Berkeley Systems
- “Managing the Unmnageable” is 9 chapters and around 300 rules of thumb and nuggets of wisdom (the creamy centre), the tools used to manage software development teams plus the authors own insights
- There were very few books (7 at the time) on managing software developers (unlike project management and agile)
- Fred Brooks – “The Mythical Man-Month“
- Situational Leadership – opens your…
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- The Heart of Agile Academy is the opportunity to reset Agile learning with a clean sheet of paper
- The core design decisions were to remove the classes being tied to a title and to be better at the specialities that make up the Heart of Agile
- Heart of Agile is just four words or focus areas: Collaborate, Deliver, Reflect and Improve
- Alistair and Ahmed Sidky tried to solve this problem in 2010 when they launched ICAgile
- There are over 3,000 different certification programs for Agile
- The Academy has courses at different levels that are taught by Agile experts from around the world (and in multiple languages)
- There is an accreditation ladder and process for bringing on new courses and trainers
- Designed to be a marketplace for Agile classes and open…
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After much reflection, the Agile Alliance Board of Directors has made the very difficult decision that Agile2020 — the largest annual global gathering of Agile practitioners — will not be reshaped into a virtual conference. We are unable to replicate the premier international event for the advancement of Agile software development in an online environment and foster the immersive experience that attendees from more than 50 countries treasure year after year.
Source: Agile2020 Will Not Move Online
Craig, Renee and Tony catch up with old friend and “irregular” guest Adam Weisbart about Agile Virtual Summit, Recess retrospectives, Build Your Own Scrum and making your own pizza.
- Renee realised Washington state is nowhere near Washington, DC
- Agile Virtual Summit 1-5 June 2020 – a collection of great speakers and registration is free!
- Distributed retrospectives – important that people give a voice-over to the items that they add
- Tips for Remote Agile ceremonies – recreate being in the same room with technology as much as possible, avoid the asynchronous Slack bots, actually standup,
- At Slack, you are not allowed to hold a meeting via Slack!
- Recess – retrospectives in a box!
- Making virtual retrospectives fun – change them up, craft retrospectives into a story (Recess does this), remember the future (where would you be if you had the most awesome sprint ever)
- The next thing in Agile just…
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One of the strengths of the agile approach to delivery is flexibility in responding to changing circumstances, and there is no better example of this than the current lockdown. I’m sure you have heard the political adage: “Don’t waste a good crisis.” which allows us to reflect on how ways of working are currently being impacted. The Agile Brisbane community joined Tony, Craig and Renee for this online fireside chat to explore concepts around the state of agile now, and what we can carry over to the post-COVID world.
- A lot of organisations are shifting their strategy and looking to digital in a stronger way than they did before
- Remote amplifies everything you do when you interact with…
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- Reminiscing about Barry’s resume that includes CitySearch (and its competitor Zip2 owned by Elon Musk), Snake, Wireless Pets on Nokia and Lilo & Stitch using J2ME and eventually onto ThoughtWorks
- Lean Enterprise was written after “The Lean Startup” was released but to explain how it works if you are not a startup and increase experimentation in organisations
- When people can design good disciplined experiments, you have system to break down problems and grow your system and people
- Fortune 15 executives and successful startup leaders don’t sit around and ask “if we are doing the framework correctly”- they have their own system, in the same way as Toyota created their…
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- Remote work is suddenly the new normal due to the impact of COVID-19, and many teams are not fully ready for the change
- The spread of agile ideas into other areas of organizations continues—business agility is becoming much more than just a buzzword
- At the practices level, Wardley Mapping is one of the few truly new ideas that have come into this space recently. Invented by Simon Wardley in 2005, they are gaining traction because they are truly a powerful tool for making sense of complexity.
- The depth of impact that computing technology has on society has heightened the focus on ethical behavior and the move towards creating an ethical framework for software development, as well as growing concern in the environmental impact the industry has.
- Diversity and inclusion efforts are moving forward, with a long way still to go
- Practices and approaches that result in more humanistic workplaces, where people can express their whole selves, are recognized as important for attracting and retaining the best people and result in more sustainably profitable organizations
Craig and Tony are at YOW! conference in Brisbane and chat with Jutta Eckstein, author of “Agile Software Development in the Large“, “Agile Software Development with Distributed Teams“, “Retrospectives for Organisational Change” “Diving for Hidden Treasures: Uncovering the Cost of Delay in Your Project Portfolio” with Johanna Rothman and “Company-wide Agility with Beyond Budgeting, Open Space & Sociocracy: Survive & Thrive on Disruption” with John Buck
- Smalltalk and pattern languages was where a lot of the early work and a lot of the early players converged
- Scrum had great marketing and certification over Extreme Programming
- Agile Software Development in the Large came out in 2004 and was probably way before its time
- Craig Larman and Bas Vodde book “Scaling Lean & Agile Development“
- IBM book “A Practical Guide to Distributed Scrum“
- A framework is not…
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