An Exit Strategy for the Agile Coach

The End is Just the Beginning

My entire mission as a coach can be summed up by answering one question: How fast can I make myself no longer necessary? Well, it’s not as extreme as it sounds but from the first moment I begin coaching in an organization, I’m working to foster an environment where the momentum of change and growth is naturally generated […]

Who Should the Scrum Master Report To?

As medium-to-large companies begin to implement Agile, more and more Project Managers are transitioning to become Scrum Masters. Eventually, this question will come up…who should the Scrum Masters report to in an organizational hierarchy? Or, who should be the leader responsible for goal-setting, feedback, and salary administration for the Scrum Master? This dilemma was recently […]

8 Symptoms of an Ineffective Product Backlog

Some product backlogs seem to meld perfectly with their team while others are more of a detriment to productivity. An ineffective product backlog will impact the team in many ways. Team sizing activities become challenging, creating tasks from backlog items takes twice as long as it should, and frustration and lack of trust will be […]

Get On Board or Get Out…A Leaders Ultimate Ultimatum

Last fall the CEO of AOL made the news by notoriously firing an employee during a “company all” conference call. The recording of the audio and transcript of the event was subsequently released to the internet. While the real-time firing made all the news, reading the transcript further reveals the following ultimatum was directed towards […]

A Managers Guide to Attending Agile Team Events

I have always been a proponent of keeping most Agile events and rituals open and transparent. If anyone in the organization would like to stop by a daily stand-up session or experience a sprint review, the more the merrier… …with one exception. If you are a manager with direct reports on an Agile team (you […]

Performance Cannot Be Managed…It Can Only Be Inspired (Part 1)

It’s that time of year again…performance management review season. The topic of performance management seems to be in the spotlight more than usual with recent news from Yahoo! and Microsoft. For many of the early years in my career I was an independent consultant but in 2004 I joined a large company as an employee. […]

Why the Rituals of Agile Matter

One of the common complaints I hear from teams moving to an Agile approach are the number of meetings they must now attend. Planning sessions, daily stand-ups, sprint reviews, retrospectives, and product backlog grooming are now populating their calendar and they wonder when they will actually have time to work. When statements like this come […]

Make Your Agile Transformation Personal

If your organization has recently started a transformation journey to become Agile or if you were recently hired into an Agile organization, it’s important to acknowledge where you are personally with the change happening around you. Your personal journey through an organizational transformation or immersion into an Agile environment will be a unique experience for […]