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Is the Agile Community Being Unreasonable?

by Amr Elssamadisy on  Mar 15, 2010 18

A recent thread on the pmi-agile Yahoo! group discusses some frustrations of the Agile recommendations that seem on the verge of naivete.

US Scrum Gathering, An Exciting Day Two

by Mike Bria on  Mar 09, 2010

Day two of the 2010 Scrum Gathering, packed full of a whirlwind of topics, talkers, activities, useful nuggets, and again (of course) healthy debates. Highlights including Harrison Owens, the creator of Open Space (as we know it), Jeff Patton's User Story Mapping, Jurgen Appello on self-organization and much, much more.

Scrum/Agile Failings or the Theses of Uncle Bob Martin

by Mark Levison on  Feb 11, 2010 6

In response to a question about the Inherit Shortcomings of Scrum/Agile - Uncle Bob Martin penned (in the spirit of Martin Luther), 7 theses: No Technical Practices, 30 Day Sprints are too long, Scrum Master sometimes turns into Project Manager, Scrum carries an anti-management undercurrent, and others.

Daily Standup Tips - a Roundup

by Mark Levison on  Jan 30, 2010 11

We often hear stories about daily standups that have become nothing more than long daily status meetings where team members tune out. What techniques do people have for avoiding this and other standup pitfalls?

Is Leading Self-Organisation like Conducting an Orchestra?

by Deborah Hartmann Preuss on  Oct 29, 2009 1

Traditional management models don't tell leaders how to support their Agile teams without undermining their emerging self-organisation. Allusions to musical performance and "conducting the orchestra" abound - but not all are in agreement. Is the "conductor" model a good practice or an anti-pattern? In his TED talk, conductor Itay Talman shows that it may depend on what we think a conductor does.

Agile's "One Essential Ingredient"

by Mike Bria on  Oct 28, 2009 5

There has been plenty of debate on what skills a developer needs, or what practices an organization must adopt for agile to be successful. But while undeniably important, is this really what's at the heart of agile success? Mark Schumann suggests that agile's "one essential ingredient" is not ground-level agile technique, but rather is the agile mindset within management ranks.

Ensuring Success for Self Organizing Teams

by Vikas Hazrati on  Jul 07, 2009

Self organization is defined as a phenomenon in which the internal organization of the system increases in complexity without being guided or managed by an outside source. However, successful self organization needs the right level of support from not only the team members but also the management and the organizational environment.

High-performance Teams – Avoiding Teamicide

by Shane Hastie on  Jun 05, 2009 3

High-performance teams constitute a mere 2% of the workforce, but Agile processes appear to stimulate the formation of these types of teams. This article discusses Steve Denning's perspective on how such teams can be nurtured in the workplace; it also looks at a recent talk by Ominlab Media's Stefan Gillard on how to select and employ for the formation of high-performance teams.

3 Pillars Of Executive Support For Agile Adoption

by Mike Bria on  Mar 11, 2009

An executives job is not over once they've justified agile to their teams and paid for training. To make a transition successful, its required this executive provide sustained support. Esther Derby takes a moment to describe what she believes to be the 3 most important aspects of this ongoing support.

Assess Your Agility With 'ABetterTeam.org'

by Mike Bria on  Feb 18, 2009

Sebastian Hermida has put together a free online tool to help teams get a better understanding of how well they're doing adopting agility. The site, abetterteam.org, is based on the "Assess Your Agility" quiz Jim Shore and Shane Warden include in their book, The Art Of Agile Development.

Over-Commitment Versus Over-Delivery

by Vikas Hazrati on  Jan 13, 2009 6

A major goal of sprint planning is to make a commitment to what is intended to be delivered by the end of the sprint. However, many teams either over-commit or over-deliver. Both situations are considered as smells and lead to lack of predictability along with other related pitfalls. The team is required to walk a fine line between the two.

Handling Your Team's "Rotten Apple"

by Mike Bria on  Jan 08, 2009 4

Recently there has been an active discussion in the Scrum Development Yahoo Group about handling an "under-performing" team member. In the 130+ response thread, "Rotten apple in Scrum team", talk ranged from advice for the primary question, to talk of team morale and who manages it, to the classic debate of measuring individuals, to distinguishing whether a team is really a "team", and more.

Using a "Snake On The Wall" To Quantify Impediments

by Mike Bria on  Dec 10, 2008 6

Kevin Schlabach discusses using a "Snake On The Wall", a lightweight approach targeted at helping your team get a better handle on the things that are slowing the development process.

Agile Games for Learning

by Mark Levison on  Oct 16, 2008 8

At Agile 2008, Don McGreal and Michael McCullough ran a session that showed how to use games and exercises to help improve our understanding of Agile principles and practices. After the conference they created the Tasty Cupcakes as a repository for all Agile games.

Venture Capital Group Acknowledges Overtime Detrimental to Scrum

by Vikas Hazrati on  Sep 30, 2008 2

Sustainable pace is known to help teams with improved velocity. Jeff Sutherland and Clinton Keith quote studies to prove that it works. However, there is an underlying word of caution which suggests that teams should take their sprint goals seriously and a couple of crunch sprints might not hurt after all.

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