Category: Organizational Agility

Perception of Value in a CAS

It has been said that “Value is in the eye of the beholder.” Our perceptions drive our understanding of value, according to psychologists, and perhaps marketers. What makes great marketing at a company and positive sales can also have a negative effect on the product development organization itself. A double-edged sword of sorts, as humans and our perceptions, assumptions, and emotions travel with us to work. Long after that impulse purchase of the latest iPhone or other gadgets we are still creatures of habit.

The same behaviors that make us vulnerable to marketing manipulation also make product development companies vulnerable to diminished truth and performance in execution. The reality is that we are navigating complex adaptive systems (CAS) within systems. The system (organization) we work within, the product (a system), our team (a system), and ourselves (a system). The causes and effects of movement or change in and around the systems are where we must build discipline, manage assumptions, and rationalize, validate (/in-) through experiments. These validations become part of our imprint, our perceptions, or mental models (schemas). But what if our rationalization or validation was incorrect? Our experiment flawed. How would you know?

This is an organizational aspect too. The organization is the symbiosis of its people and their behavior and mental models.

For example, what is the value of a spare tire when you are purchasing a new car?iu

Does the spare tire affect the decision-making process of buying the car? What about the price of an average spare tire ($30-$100) and its effect on the decision-making process to buy a car? Continue reading “Perception of Value in a CAS”

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RE: #noestimates sidebar in #SAFe #RTE course.

I read several articles on the subject after having a short discussion during class this week with a fellow student (and amazing person!).

#noestimates does not seem to address the rather common difficulty in achieving a consistent, homogenous backlog with deterministic job durations and delay costs in a CAS. The #noestimates solution fails in the same ways that story points can fail. Yin/Yang. Red vs. Blue. Black & White. Whoopee.

260px-Yin_yang.svg Continue reading “RE: #noestimates sidebar in #SAFe #RTE course.”

Paradigm shift: Slicing Features

Adventures in slicing features.

Teams need to learn the artful skill of slicing features into stories a related to their business context and domain purpose. A typical anti-pattern is for teams to waterfall their iterations, as described in the next two scenarios.

The first iteration we will gather all the requirements, the second iteration we will design, the third and fourth iterations we will build, and the fifth iteration we will test…and so on…

interwaterfall
This is an inter-waterfall anti-pattern. It is essentially a pure waterfall approach chopped up into smaller time boxes.

Another derivation of this anti-pattern is to order up another form of phony business agility and/or Scrum.

In this iteration we will pull “requirements gathering” stories first. When those are all finished, we will pull the “design stories”, and then “build” stories…

intrawaterfall.png
In this case, it is an intra-waterfall anti-pattern.

The next common anti-pattern related to intra-waterfall is for dev team members to pull stories and work on them independently. This is a siloing ant-pattern, indicating the team is not cross-functional and is simply a collection of silos and individual waterfalls. Continue reading “Paradigm shift: Slicing Features”

The Knowledge Worker Factory

Does it really exist?

Or are we still working in the blacksmith shop? Will it take AI to bridge the gap?

In Lean manufacturing companies that build physical things have been able to improve quality consistently and dramatically since the dawn of the industrial age.

Here many of us are in the post-industrial, Information Technology or Digital Age.

When we change the channel to knowledge work, companies struggle mightily to match the pace of quality and outcomes of physical manufacturers, even to this day. Why?

XP, Agile, Scrum, DEVOPS, Kanban for Software, Scaling Frameworks

Are these practices, methods, frameworks, and guidance really helping the knowledge worker factory catch up with companies that make physical things? Perhaps there is some evidence to support the claim. Continue reading “The Knowledge Worker Factory”

Scrum 2.0 – The Scrum Manager

The new new new Scrum.

Gone are the days when a Scrum master was the facilitator of a process framework.

New new new Scrum 2.0 brings in a new perception and fallacious understanding of the Scrum master role as a manager. The Scrum Manager. Continue reading “Scrum 2.0 – The Scrum Manager”

The Scrum Song – vlog – Coaching Tip #9

Lot’s of instructors will tell you about the common escape clause for Scrum, “Scrum Is Simple but Not Easy.” I read another article that makes a much more valid point, “Scrum is easy, people are hard.” The latter diving into how people learn and more importantly, how they change. Or not.

Any two-day course is only the beginning. In two days, you are getting exposed to a breadth of knowledge about Scrum. If you are lucky enough to learn Scrum from a provider that includes Bowman’s Back of the Room and/or Gamification techniques then you will also be exposed to a surface level experience of how Scrum is intended to work.

Continue reading “The Scrum Song – vlog – Coaching Tip #9”

How to PI System Demo like a boss

SAFe® The Evidence Series #1

Check out the amazing things that high performance, motivated teams can do. This is business agility and Lean-Agile culture at its best. The transformation of my client’s organization is amazing. We are using Lean, Agile, Scrum, Kanban (and systems thinking), SAFe®, OrgMindset®, and other tools to inspire and persuade a positive change in culture at the FAA-ESC.

It is hard work, but it is worth every minute of it. It isn’t perfect, but the results are significant and measurable. The “why” was a burning platform. Now, just a few PI’s later, it is a thriving platform. We focus on the goals, not the tools to achieve positive business outcomes.

Congratulations to Team Armada for winning the “Relentless Improvers” innovation football for PI6.

Big kudos to John Wiese and his team for putting together an awe-inspiring PI System Demo.

Special thanks to the FAA-ESC, John Wiese, and teams for providing permission to publish the video under the safe harbor notice/policy. Also, special thanks to Matt Taylor for sharing a different video perspective as a content contributor.

#SAFe #Agile #Culture #OrgMindset #BigLakeSoftware

 

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