Scott Sehlhorst, product management and strategy consultant describes two views of the product roadmap.
Organizations are discovering new innovative ways to manage work and unleash the potential of the people who are working there. The Dare Festival Antwerp 2014 focuses on organization design and culture for networked organizations, providing ideas and actionable practices. Frederic Laloux explored 12 organizations who are using fundamentally new ways to manage work and their employees.
When organizations decide to scale agile they can be looking for agile ways to define strategies, manage direction and sustain alignment. Deploying and stay aligned, is today's challenge said Pierre Neis. At the Lean Kanban France 2014 conference Pierre showed how using Hoshin Kanri has helped global players in their lean agile transition.
Management can get the feeling of losing control when their enterprise adopts agile and starts deploying self-organizing teams. Procedures, review boards and consultation bodies can become superfluous when switching to an agile approach, but they may not realize that, says Marcel Heijmans. Trying to regain control with additional planning can make things worse, causing "death by planning".
Adopting agile in organizations usually impacts the role and activities of project managers. Scrum offers the possibility for project managers to become Scrum masters or product owners. Project managers can also adopt their way of working and the things they do to work together with Scrum masters and agile teams.
Long working days, deadlines and team pressure can impact the quality of the software that agile teams deliver. What can we do to prevent that from happening and enable teams to improve the quality of their software? Some suggestions are to arrange for scope and deadline slack, adopt pull systems, and to make sure that people can slow down and get enough sleep.
Estimations are used by agile teams and product owners for prioritizing work and to plan releases of products. They can be done on different levels and in various ways.
Agile suggest that teams should fail-fast to enable quick learning from mistakes. Learning from failure is one approach, you can also learn early and fast from successes, by doing experimentation, or by using a plan for knowledge acquisition.
“Many team and their product owners believe that the team's unique job is to deliver more and more story points, but we consider this to be a complete misunderstanding of the relation between the team and the product owner” said Damien Thouvenin and Pierrick Revol. They ran a sprint planning game on investing time to produce stories, investigate issues, reduce technical debt, or do training.
Organization mostly do an agile transformation for a whole team, project, or organizational unit, given that agile is a team driven approach. But there are also professionals who start using agile practices individually, or who are working agile as a one person team. How can individuals adopt agile, and what kind of benefits can it give them?
The principle of “responding to change over following a plan”, is it a strength or a flexibility that can’t work in practice? For example, what about agile projects that had difficulties managing changes and customers who expect too much flexibility? Can agile not live up to its promises, or is it the way that teams and organizations have adopted agile that is causing the problems?
An exploration on how project management with Scrum and the project management process areas of the Capability Maturity Model Integration for Development are related.
When you have a large backlog with many user stories, structuring a product backlog with story maps or process maps can help to keep an overview and see the bigger picture.
In his recent blog posting “Planning Poker: Avoiding Fallacies in Effort Estimate” Hayim Makabee discusses a common problem of effort estimation called planning fallacy and why planning poker helps to avoid it.
Earlier this week Jim Bird from BIDS Trading Technologies posted a blog article about the differences between Agile and Lean approaches to planning and decision making.