Guillaume Duquesnay uses his experience with games and roleplaying in his work as an agile coach. At the Agile Tour Brussels he talked about leadership, facilitation and management styles where no authority was involved. InfoQ interviewed Guillaume on his coaching, facilitation and leadership skills, and asked him if playing games gives happiness and fun to people, and make them more productive?
To become more flexible, durable and increase organizational effectiveness, retrospectives can be used in adopting agile. Some experiences stories and examples of how teams use retrospectives as a sustainable and adaptable solution for agile adoption, to implement continuous improvement with them.
Jakob Nielsen, usability guru and author of Usability Engineering, raises the concern that Agile methods are a threat to traditional approaches to designing usability. He goes on to propose solutions so that usability designers can work together in the Agile world. In addition Alistair Cockburn, while generally supporting Jakob, takes issue with a few of his points.
Any change whether an Agile implementation or re-arranging the office furniture is going to encounter some resistance. The real question is how we react when that happens. Dave Nicolette and Lasse Koskela's workshop - was designed too help us understand where resistance comes from and how to handle it.
What are the typical problems that Retrospectives suffer from? What do we do to avoid them?
Joseph Pelrine has come full circle: from university studies in Psychology, journeying through SmallTalk, XP and Scrum, and now back to broader questions: Why and how does Agile work? In this interview, Joseph talked about Complexity Science, and how story-telling, "sense-making," network analysis and speed-dating's gut-feel approach may prove more useful than our old toolkits for managing teams.
Teams moving to an Agile approach may feel irritated as they move from command-and-control to a collaborative culture - which can start to look like non-stop meetings, starting first thing every Monday morning. In this InfoQ exclusive presentation, recorded at Agile2007, Agile coach Jean Tabaka shared her experiences working with teams, offering guidance on how to alleviate meeting burnout.
Saying the right thing at the right time can transform an interaction. But it's difficult! In a recent StickyMinds article, Michele Sliger suggested a handful of phrases to help keep the conversation going in the right direction.
In this month's edition of StickyMinds, communications consultant Naomi Karten has written a short article "Developing Sales Savvy" which may help your new ideas reach the ear of a resistant colleague. She notes that, while sometimes you just get lucky, there are other times when *how* you sell can be as critical to your success as what you sell.
Software engineer Paul Tyma, in a recent blog entry, tells us "I don't get this new craze of a job called 'Agile Coach'. I mean, everything I've read about Agile and XP seems dead simple." Though not a proponent of Agile, Tyma has done XP, so perhaps there's a basis for his view that an Agile Coach is not so much a 'coach' as "a hall monitor or a secret police officer."
InfoQ brings you an exclusive chapter excerpt from the recent book "Agile Retrospectives: Making Good Teams Great", by Esther Derby and Diana Larsen. These expert facilitators show how teams can run focused, helpful retrospectives themselves, without an outside facilitator. We asked the authors a few questions about the making of their book.
Conflict is inevitable at work. Sooner or later, you will disagree about what to test, when to test, or how long to test software. How you approach the conflict affects the outcome and, more lastingly, how you feel about the exchange. On StickMinds last week, Esther Derby looked at some of the ways we approach conflict and how they affect solutions - and relationships.
Knowledge@Wharton asks: Is Your Team Too Big? Too Small? What's the Right Number? Decades of research suggest the sweetspot may be between 4 and 6, though corrections to team size are unlikely to resolve all of a team's problems.
David Spann introduces Jean Tabaka's book: "Collaboration Explained" in which she shares stories and facilitation techniques to make groups more effective, and provides templates to get them started.
Rather than keeping customers and developers apart (to avoid "misunderstandings"), Agilists intentionally bring them together. Communication tends to improve faster than one might expect, and soon everyone is interacting constructively. But in a team or between teams, there is always room for improvement: Cory Foy blogged what happened when he tried a new idea in "The Dreyfus Model Experiment".