I've read several articles and blog posts recently which have been questioning the need for story points and estimating techniques such as planning poker - Indeed the last last few conferences I've attended I've partaken in several conversations on this subject - #noEstimatesRead More
Great Agile teams are prepared to change the rules... because they understand the behavioural changes, safeguards and phycology of being Agile... 'Bad' agile teams change the rules because they don't understand and are not prepared to take the leap of faith required to achieve greatness!Read More
One of the things I can't over emphasise enough when coaching agile techniques or working with a team is the importance of keeping everything 'real' and 'physical'Read More
Being agile contrary to popular belief doesn't in fact insist you work in iterations at all - it's a concept used in Scrum but if your an agile team using Kanban you probably won't have any iterations at all - working instead on a flow based system - albeit you may have the concept of cycles.Read More
Introducing WIP limits has an immediate psychological advantage - If a team can only work on a limited number of features it forces a prioritisation to take place... likewise at the department or organisational level - Such restrictions whilst unpopular encourages better decision making and ensures that only those tasks with a clear business case are undertaken.Read More
So what is a time box? Put simply it's an agreed fixed length of time that a team or individual will use to accomplish a goal. At the end of the period of time the team stops - regardless of if the task is complete or not.Read More
Ideally the review meeting should be kept informal and all members of the Scrum team should attend along with stake-owners, management, customers the Product owner and something I like to do is invite members of other scrum teams/development teams along to observe (This can also be a good thing to do in the retrospective from time to time and helps to share practices and promote good ideas within an organisation)
No matter how well your doing Scrum there's always the opportunity to improve!
The process of improvement should be a continual daily task but it's also one on the 4 meetings or ceremonies that should occur within every sprint, for more information on each of the other ceremonies within Scrum take a look at my earlier blog postRead More
So what are the 5 core values? Focus - Courage - Openness - Commitment - Respect.Read More
So what is an Information Refrigerator? Simple, it's any type of chart, graph, project plan which involves digging around for.... before you find the ketchup your actually looking for!Read More
Scrum is probably the most famous and popular implementation of Agile going....
It's established, structured and well documented - with clearly defined roles, responsibilities and ceremonies.
I've written a few blog posts about Scrum but if you're new to Scrum it's probably worth reading my article
One of the questions I probably hear more than any other is 'We want to increase velocity, how do we do it?' I'll leave you to guess who asks that question! but I'll give you a clue.... it's not the developers! or actually should I say it's not the Agile team! (but that's a whole other blog for another day)Read More
I've asked this question a few times of Agile teams... And usually look at me! look at each other for inspiration and perhaps, hopefully, eventually will find a written Definition of Done.... hopefully attached to the 'Information Radiator'! Usually however teams doing 'agile' have one... but nobody can remember what it is or where it is - let alone know for sure if it's being adhered too!Read More
Kanban is another agile term that gets thrown around a-lot.... usually by people who have no idea what it's really all about - but when did a lack of knowledge or understanding ever stop anybody throwing around buzz words?Read More
The daily standup is often carried out by agile teams.. It’s a short, typically 15 minute time-boxed planning session held at the start of the day for the team. One of the outputs from the daily stand-up may be a list of blockers which are preventing the team from completing work. Often these blockers can be resolved within the team or with conversations with other teams.
However with large programmes of work where many teams with different disciplines are working ‘together’ blockers and dependancies become more of an issue and resolution more complex and lengthy.Read More