» Agile Scrum
Several years ago I had the opportunity to support a growing consulting firm to move from waterfall to the Scrum Framework. It's been exciting to watch Highland Solutions learn, adapt, and grow as a team in their ability to organize and deliver great client solutions. The attached Case Study on Transition to Scrum describes the approach that Highland used to move to Agile and Scrum, and some of the things that they learned along the way. It also highlights the significant benefits they've seen as a result of their Agile Transformation.
The new Scrum Guide, the definitive reference for the Scrum Framework, is out. As of November 7, Scrum co-creators Jeff Sutherland and Ken Schwaber have published an updated version of the Scrum Guide. The last three revisions were in 2011, 2013 and 2016 so this is a relatively fast update since July 2016.
Last month I wrote the Quick Guide to the Basic Agile Certifications. There was a lot of interest in the two Scrum Certifications, the Certified Scrum Master (CSM) and the Professional Scrum Master (PSM). But I was surprised there was also some interest in the less popular Agile Certified Practitioner certification from PMI. And I believe there are many of you out there who can achieve this certification without hardly trying.
PMI Produced a Guide to the Agile Methodology?
Some of you may be surprised as I was to learn about PMI's recent collaboration with the Agile Alliance to produce an overview of Agile Methodologies. Groups of volunteers from both organization worked together to draft and review a document on Agile. The product of their work is the newly published, Agile Practice Guide. A PMI publication, this document is now generally available and is included with the free download of the 6th Edition of the PMBOK.
I meet with a lot of organizations who want to be Agile. When I ask why, most will respond with mechanical and tactical reasons:
- Improve On Time Delivery
- Align Business and Technology
- Flexibility to Respond to Change
Are these the right things to measure? If you achieve this, will you create a competitive advantage, or even parity? Do these represent business agility?
Have you ever wondered how to undermine change and thwart progress in organizations? One of my agile coaching colleagues recently shared a link to the Simple Sabotage Field Manual, a document published during WWII by the Strategic Services, the precursor to the CIA. It makes for entertaining reading, in particular, section (11) General Interference with Organizations and Production.
Do you think that your organization is too large or too old to succeed with Agile and Scrum? This article describes how the leadership team for the Global Markets at Bank of America invested in Scrum Training and Agile Coaching to successfully adopt Agile and Scrum. The move from waterfall to Scrum was the firsts step in a broader Agile Transformation which was led by key Agile Leaders. A detailed write-up of this Bank of America Client Success story is available for download.
One of the most common conversations I’ve had with clients over the last few years is how to move from waterfall development to using the Scrum Framework. Based on those discussions and years of experience leading and supporting these transformations for my clients, I’ve compiled this short guide on planning and executing an agile pilot or an agile transformation in your organization.
I’ve been giving a lot of thought about what makes a coach effective and how to improve my own effectiveness as an Agile coach. Many or most of us probably are in a position where we have an opportunity to coach others, whether that be our team members, our employees, even our bosses. As parents, we may be coaching our children and spouses. And we probably also have the experience where we are being coached by others.
A key part of an Agile Transformation for an organization is forming the Scrum teams. The starting point for most organizations is typically a functional organization such as developers, business analysts, and testers who report to their respective managers. It is common for each person to be assigned to multiple projects. So how do we go from that to having dedicated team members on cross-functional teams?