Is LeSS meer dan SAFe?

(Grote) Nederlandse bedrijven die op zoek zijn naar een oplossing om de voordelen die hun Agile teams brengen op te schalen, gebruiken vooral het Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe) als referentiemodel. Dit model is -ook voor managers- zeer toegankelijke opgezet en trainingen en gecertificeerde consultants zijn beschikbaar. Al in 2009 beschreven Craig Larman en Bas Vodde hun ervaringen met de toepassing van Scrum in grote organisaties (onder andere Nokia) in hun boeken ‘Scaling Lean & Agile Development’ en ‘Practices for Scaling Lean & Agile Development’. De methode noemden ze Large Scale Scrum, afgekort LeSS. Read more →

De oneindige cirkel van succes

Nagenoeg elk team dat op een Agile manier gaat werken ondergaat een versnelde ontwikkeling. Agile teams ontwikkelen zich meestal gemakkelijk. In de 1ste sprint retrospective zullen de teamleden de teamsfeer en –dynamiek als een van de Goed!-punten noemen.  Agile legt onder meer nadruk op samenwerken, technische excellentie, transparantie en het presenteren van behaalde resultaten. Dit geeft een boost aan de cultuur, vorm van communiceren (en met wie!) en het vakmanschap.

Niet alle teams ontwikkelen zich even snel, en niet alle teams lukt het om hun succesvolle groei na de opstartfase door te zetten. Vooral bij een flinke tegenslag, een impediment die voor stagnatie in het development proces zorgt, onderscheidt zich het kaf van het koren. Er zijn verschillende lijstjes als de Zeven Strategieën [Bernstein] of de Vier Ingrediënten [Krishnamurthy] voor succesvolle teams. Hieronder het lijstje gebaseerd op mijn ervaring met succesvolle en minder succesvolle teams.

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Agile, planning and fixed dates in no time

There are many commonly held myths about agile. Two of these myths are that agile projects don’t do any planning and that you can’t do agile on a fixed date project. On the other hand, organizations have customers they want to satisfy and operations to run. And sometimes they feel a need for planning, and sometimes they face a fixed date. Can we simple neglect these feelings or must we exclude such projects from our Agile world?
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A suit for your product owner

Last week at the Xebicon conference in the Netherlands we presented different setups of Product Owner teams, using 3 models. We talked about Product Owner teams, as in most cases the Product Owner role is not executed by just the Product Owner person. He (or she, of course) organizes help from others to fulfil this exacting role.Read more →

Forget the Project Manager, we need competences!

One of the basic ideas in Scrum is the backbone formed by Product Owner and the Agile Team, headed by their Scrum Master.
The Product Owner stands right in the middle of the business, knows every functional detail, is trusted and respected by his business colleagues. Furthermore he takes care of the acceptance and business implementation of products and features delivered by the Agile team.
The Scrum Master, with his team, takes care of the technical realization and delivery of new products and features.

Scrum advocates a very short, direct connection between the one who has a goal and the ones who deliver the solution to reach this goal. Scrum does not know a Projectmanager role. Traditional projectmanagement responsibilities are divided over the Product Owner and the Scrum Master roles. Read more →

Size does matter! Be careful to use velocity as measure for improvement

Imagine you are playing a game of rugby against some blacksuited guys who are doing some odd dancing and screaming exercise before you finally get to start playing. You win the game 27 – 3. You can imagine it wasn’t just one beer at the big party after the match and you did not see home before early morning. A year later your team finds itself in the same stadium against the same guys, doing the same little piece of folk dancing, just a little louder than last year. This time you win 27 – 6, only. The coach and the crowd are going mad: your team lost half of its performance in just a year time! You take a shower, no beers, go home and go to bed early. Measuring the improvement in performance is easy! Read more →

What will Agile bring in 2011?

2010 has ended and a new year has begun. 2010 offered us a lot of learning opportunities. It was a good year for the Agile community in the Netherlands and in the world. We saw more and more big corporations embrace Agile methodologies and put serious effort into making it work for them, mostly as a project methodology. ‘Agile adoption’ was THE 2010 word, maybe on par with ‘Wikileak’. So what do we think will be hot in 2011?
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A workshop to get the Agile Mindset set

The transition to the Agile way of working is more than a process change. It requires a different way of interaction and behavior and a different mindset. In a large (a little less than 200 people) Agile Implementation endeavor we organized an Agile Mindset session to explain Agile principles and to push the Agile teams away from the comfort of their traditional patterns.

Getting on the Agile track successfully…Read more →

Painless demo’s

Within an Agile project environment periodic demos are one of the main strongholds. Demos are good for the team and the customers. They set focus and make progress painfully transparent. Agile promotes demoing the teams results every iteration, so every 2-4 weeks, and from the first iteration on. In this article we will present 2 real life cases, and discuss some considerations one should take into account to prevent early demos to have a boomerang effect on the project. Early demos can set the customers expectations to unrealistic levels which will lead to frustration all around. Read more →