Where I Work

Where I Work
http://www.leadingagile.com/

Monday, June 26, 2017

Is PMP still worth it if I am doing Agile? - w/ Jesse Fewell

In each of my CSM and CSPO classes someone asks “Should I still get PMP?”

In this podcast I got the chance to check in with Jesse Fewell on the value of certification. Jesse and I have been friends since 2008 when we both started working on trying to find ways to get PMI to pay attention to Agile. We both come from a traditional background, have been heavily involved with PMI and now make a living teaching Scrum certification classes. 

Jesse and I debate the answer to the PMP certification question and along the way, discuss our differing views on the value of PMI-ACP, CSM and CSPO certifications. These are things we don’t always see eye to eye on, so regardless of your viewpoint, there is sure to be something in here to help you see things from a different perspective. 

We also have a brief conversation about what do to about PMO’s in Agile organizations.



Note: You may hear some odd background noise. This time it isn't me slurping coffee … #blamethefidgittoys

Show Notes

00:08 Podcast Starts
00:34 An update on Jesse’s recent and upcoming Agile PMO sessions, VirtuallyAgile.com and his Certified Agile Leadership Training classes
07:53 Does PMP Certification still matter? And if you are working in Agile, do you still need it?
09:57 If you are a traditional PM, are you in danger of becoming unemployable if you do not have agile?
11:50 Can a traditional PM avoid the trap of thinking they “get” Agile before they actually do?
14:26 Jesse’s involvement with PMI-ACP, it’s evolution and current relevance
16:20 What can you expect of someone who has PMP or PMI-ACP Certification?
18:10 PMI and Agile Alliance collaboration and what we can expect to see from it
20:10 PMI is working with the Agile Alliance… “It’s like the X-Men and the Justice League tried to plan something together”
21:10 “Everyone has the same mission - improve outcomes and people doing their job well”
21:43 It’s not a “standard”, it’s a “guide”
22:07 How much Agile will be in the new (6th) edition of the PMBOK?
23:00 For the skeptics… there is good on both sides of PMI and the Agile Alliance working together
24:30 Understanding the distinction between the work done by PMI and the Agile Alliance (stabilize and align vs. disrupt)
26:42 Will there be a new Agile certification coming from PMI?
29:26 If you know a PMP trying to decide between taking a CSM or a PMI-ACP course and they need advice on what to take
32:42 Dave and Jesse debate whether getting PMP is still valuable for a CSM or CSPO
36:17 “Most Agile people are punching above their weight…”
39:18 What do we do about the PMO if our organization is adopting Agile?
44:22 Want more Jesse? Here is how to get it….
45:02 Interview Ends

Links references in the podcast:

The Hybrid PMO (part of Seminars World) http://bit.ly/2tbOvM5
Solving the PMO Paradox (at Agile 2017) http://bit.ly/2sJ8wJj

Certifications and Agile Organizations Mentioned in the Podcast

PMP Certification http://bit.ly/29NtawC
CSM Certification http://bit.ly/ZtotC1
CSPO Certification http://bit.ly/1HeXnC5
Certified Agile Leadership Certification https://www.scrumalliance.org/agile-leadership

Contacting Jesse


Contacting Dave



Friday, June 23, 2017

WTF is Cost of Delay?

At some point, seems like about 2 summers ago, it seemed like a lot of really smart people in Agile started talking about Cost of Delay as a great way to understand the relative value of work or projects within an organization. The problem I ran into was, whenever I asked about it, the people who explained it to me (who were always way smarter than me) would quickly leave me even more confused than I was when I started asking the question. For awhile I kind of let it go as "another one of those Agile things I just don't totally get" and resigned myself to just nodding my head when people talked about it. That approach was working pretty well, but it started to bug me that I was just kind of universally punting on the whole topic.

I am very fortunate to work at LeadingAgile where I have a lot of really smart colleagues who are open to letting me ask them lots of questions. So, I decided to take advantage of that and finally try to understand exactly WTF Cost of Delay actually is.  The result of those questions is 3 podcasts, which, if you listen to in order, should not only help you understand it at a conceptual level but also at a level where you can begin to practically apply it.

Each of these podcasts originally was posted on the LeadingAgile site. Links to the blog posts are listed below each podcast.

An Overview of Cost of Delay with Jim Hayden


Original blogpost


Calculating Cost of Delay with Marty Bradley


Original blogpost



"It's not a Math Problem" - Cost of Delay Part 3 with Dean Stevens


Original blogpost


Monday, June 19, 2017

Jimi Fosdick at SG2017 on going from PMP to CST

Fearless Agility’s Jimi Fosdick took some time out of during the 2017 Scrum Gathering in San Diego to let me interview him about what it was like to go from being a full on, old school, traditional PMP, to someone who spends his days helping individuals and organizations move to a more Agile way of working.

“It should feel counterintuitive awkward uncomfortable and maybe a little bit painful because anything that represents real change feels that way.”

Jimi is not your run of he mill PMP turned Agilist. His outspoken style, views and approach are unique, but the reason I was so psyched to get to do the interview was the fact that despite all that, Jimi still shows a lot of respect and empathy for traditional minded folks and the challenges they face in making the switch… because he went through it himself.
If you are trying to move from a traditional way of working to someone who has adopted and internalized Agile, there is a lot of good advice in this podcast.



SHOW NOTES

01:40 - Interview begins
02:00 - Jimi’s work and his background
04:17 - Jimi’s experience of going moving from traditional PM work to Agile
06:35 - Advice from Jimi for those moving from traditional to Agile
07:46 - Knowing what you are arguing against, before you know what you are arguing for
09:30 - Embracing the crisis of faith
10:49 - Hyper-focus and the discipline required to make Scrum work
11:45 - The difference between a Project Manager and a ScrumMaster
14:44 - Why Scrum has no Meetings
16:47 - Jim’s work in the Enterprise
20:10 - Cargo Cult Scrum
20:30 - Advice for the PMO that exists in an organization transitioning to Agile
21:19 - Jimi (See the photo below for the more older and mellower Jimi)
24:44 - It’s more about people and change than governance
25:55 - If you have a time machine and could go back and meet Fredrick Taylor would you stop him?
26:42 - Breaking Gantt’s hands
26:55 - Finding Jimi


LINKS FROM THE PODCAST

Cargo Cults on Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cargo_cult
Cargo Cult Video: https://youtu.be/qmlYe2KS0-Y

CONTACTING JIMI

Web: FearlessAgility http://www.fearlessagility.com/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/fearlessagility
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/FearlessAgility/
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jimifosdick/
Upcoming Events on the Scrum Alliance site: http://bit.ly/2srE7gU



Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Parikshit Basrur and the Agile Transformation Playbook

Parikshit Basrur works in Sydney, Australia as a Management Consultant who focuses on leadership, strategy and execution. He comes from a strong traditional project management background but for the past few years he has been working in a senior leadership role within an organization that has been undergoing a transformation to Agile. This work, and Parikshit’s unique way of looking at managing work has led him to develop an Agile Transformation Playbook. In this interview, we discuss his approach to working with and transitioning to agile, the importance of focusing on culture, his take on the agile vs. traditional debate and his upcoming sessions at the Hindsight Forum where he will be giving a presentation on how to establish agile practices in a well-established business.


Show Notes

00:12 Interview begins
00:33 Background on Parikshit
01:52 Parikshit’s transition from waterfall to Agile
05:00 The difference between being Agile and doing Agile
07:15 Finding the right tools and delivering work
08:12 Speaking with Stakeholders Executives about Enterprise Transformation
12:03 Responding to the “WE HAVE TO SHIP NOW!” attitude and understanding WHY Agile?
17:15 Helping stakeholders appreciate how hard transformation can be
19:10 The McDonald’s Drive Thru version of Agile
22:30 Agile needs to be like air
23:35 Change your culture first… help them stay away from the candy on the table
27:40 Creating the desire for change
29:50 How the Agile Transformation Playbook differs from other transformation approaches
32:35 Where to find the Agile Transformation Playbook, seeing Parikshit’s upcoming presentations
33:15 Where to reach Parikshit
33:39 Interview Ends

To learn more about the Agile Transformation Playbook

Slideshare: http://bit.ly/2s0TKvy
Medium: http://bit.ly/2rlv3YD
YouTube: https://youtu.be/js96mF3X_fw

Parikshit’s upcoming sessions at the Hindsight Forum

HindSight Forum http://www.hindsightforum.com/events/
Melbourne - June 21, 2017
Sydney - June 22, 2017


Contacting Parikshit

LinkedIn: http://bit.ly/2rg8z06
Twitter: https://twitter.com/parikshitbasrur

Friday, June 09, 2017

Student QA: Design on the Scrum Team & Multiple Roles w/ Derek Huether

This post originally appeared on  LeadingAgile's Field Notes.
You can subscribe directly to these podcasts on SoundCloud or iTunes


Design and Cross Functional Teams (2:11 )

“Every time I hear you speak about cross-functional team I am not sure who these teams comprise of exactly. In my world the confusion here is most often related to design inputs. Any digital product will have a visual UI and thus its development will require design inputs. Do most of Leading Agile clients consider this a separate process that contributes to the readiness of stories for a technical Scrum team? Or do you normally assume designers are a part of a Scrum team?
In my view, the former creates waterfall-like dependencies and the latter gets in the way of confident estimations. So, even if both models are feasible, none of them seems ideal, because it leaves an are that has to be tightly managed.” Submitted by Sergey via Email


Multiple Roles - ScrumMaster & Product Owner for 3 Teams (8:20)

How do you deal with a manager who thinks you should be ScrumMaster for multiple teams AND Product Owner at the same time?

This question was submitted by a student in a CSPO class who allowed me to record the question being asked as long as I promised not to post the recording or identify the person by name. In order to honor that, I played the recording for Derek before hand, but in the podcast, what you’ll hear is me (Dave) relating the question.

The question shared by the student related to the fact that they are currently playing the role of ScrumMaster on three different teams and have also been asked to act as Product Owner for these teams. The person explained to their manager that the way Scrum is designed to work, a ScrumMaster is supposed to be dedicated to a single team, should definitely not be trying to support three teams and absolutely should not be playing the role of ScrumMaster and Product Owner at the same time. The manager responded by asking that the person give a detailed account what they are doing all day as a Scrum Master because the manager did not believe the person was too busy to be able to serve as ScrumMaster for three teams and Product Owner for as those teams as well.

Contacting Derek

You can reach Derek on the LeadingAgile site at www.leadingagile.com/guides/derek-huether/
On Twitter at twitter.com/derekhuether
Or on his personal site at www.derekhuether.com

Contacting Dave

You can reach Dave on the LeadingAgile site at www.leadingagile.com/guides/dave-prior/
On Twitter at twitter.com/mrsungo
Or on his personal site at: drunkenpm.net

Feedback/Questions

If you have comments on the podcast, or have questions for the LeadingAgile coaches that you’d like to have addressed in a future episode of LeadingAgile’s SoundNotes, you can reach Dave at dave.prior@leadingagile.com

LeadingAgile CSM and CSPO Classes

For information on LeadingAgile’s upcoming public CSM and CSPO classes, please go to: www.leadingagile.com/our-gear/training/
Use the discount code: LA_Podcast to receive a 15% discount on the class.

Thursday, June 08, 2017

Catching Up...

I haven't been very diligent about keeping this blog up to date with all the posts I do at LeadingAgile each week, so I'm going to start scheduling those into the blog and get things caught up. Until I am caught up, I'll be adding one every few days.

Also, since ProjectsatWork is not part of ProjectManagement.com, the P@W podcasts will soon be adjusted a bit to reflect that.

Wednesday, June 07, 2017

Savannah Rayat - Enhancing your life with Personal Agility

During the 2017 Heart of Agile Conference in Pittsburgh, Savannah Rayat gave a presentation called “Enhancing your life with Personal Agility”. During the session she explained how she has applied some basic Agile practices from Scrum and Kanban to refine and focus her approach to life, deciding what is most important to her, and managing teams. Savannah has also applied Agile in other non-IT areas. During the interview, we talk about some of the Scrum practices she has applied in working with her team of Realtors.

Show Notes

00:10 - Interview Begins
00:52 - Background on Savannah
01:42 - How Day-Trading fits in with being a Realtor/IT Professional
02:15 - How Savannah defines Personal Agility
04:44 - Savannah’s approach to Personal Kanban and her issue with deadlines
05:31 - The important of setting and maintaining WIP Limits
07:06 - Reducing your WIP to 3-4
10:00 - Preventing the backlash of cutting stuff our of your life
12:15 - Having affection for your interests
12:42 - Deciding what you can live without
14:29 - Long term and short term road mapping
15:48 - Savannah’s  Day to Day practice of Agile
18:50 - The need for slack
21:35 - The benefits of self-reflection and coping with the guilt of doing unplanned stuff
23:16 - Making the time for Personal Kanban
24:19  - Accountability Partners
25:33 - How to get started with using Personal Agility
27:44 - How Savannah uses Scrum to support collaboration on her Real Estate team
32:38 - Getting in touch with Savannah
34:39  - Interview Ends

Contacting Savannah 

on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/savannah-rayat-8942b8120/
on Twitter: https://twitter.com/SavannahRayat
Savannah’s Realty site: http://rayatrealtygroup.com
Savannah’s Heart of Agile 2017 http://heartofagile.com/Session/enhancing-your-life-with-personal-agility/

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Tracking Scrum Master Performance w/ Troy Lightfoot



Troy Lightfoot joins Dave Prior to respond to a recurring student question “How can I track the performance of a ScrumMaster using metrics which are different form the ones I use to track the performance of the team?” Using the LeanAgile Intelligence tool he co-authored, Troy walks Dave through a few options that can be used to collect data that could provide clarity on performance of an individual ScrumMaster.

For more information on LeanAgile Intelligence: https://www.leanagileintelligence.com/
You can follow Troy Lightfoot on Twitter at https://twitter.com/g4stroy
You can follow Dave Prior on Twitter at https://twitter.com/mrsungo

Monday, May 22, 2017

Test Driven Development and Mobbing for Non Developers

Summary: You don’t have to be a developer to use Test Driven Development and Mob Programming. Last week on Twitch Amitai Schlier & Troy Lightfoot led Dave Prior and Rachel Gertz (neither of who can program) through an exercise in remote pairing with TDD.




If you come from a PM background, you’ve probably heard developers talk about Test Driven Development and you may even get the basic idea behind it - build the test to prove something works, then build the thing that passes the test.

You may also have heard about Mob Programming - the set of practices put together by Woody Zuill that takes the idea of pairing and extends it to the whole team. In mobbing, an entire team builds everything together. They share one keyboard and rotate the person typing at timed intervals. This allows them to develop cross-functionality, to learn from each other and, basically, QA as they go.

These are both topics I’ve been interested in for awhile, but I’ve never had an opportunity arise that gave me a chance to actually try them.

But, last week I had the opportunity to participate in a unique experiment that not only let me learn more about each of these sets of practices, but gave me a
Troy Lightfoot, from Agile Uprising set up a TDD & Mobbing workshop in Twitch. Myself and Rachel Gertz from Louder Than Ten were guided by Amitai Schleier, the creator of Agile in 3 Minutes Podcast and Schmonz.com, who led us through an exercise in remote mobbing using TDD.

The entire experience was a blast and I’ve developed a new found appreciation for the entire though process and discipline that goes into using Test Driven Development and trying to mob with a team.

I’d encourage you to check out the video on your own, or with your team and maybe even try to replicate the experiment. I think this would work great as a team building exercise as well. Most of the time I felt like I was playing a board game with a bunch of friends.

Monday, May 15, 2017

Jessie Shternshus - Improv, Safety, and “Yes, … and”

Jessie Shternshus is the founder of The Improv Effect and the author of “CTRL SHIFT: 50 Games for 50 ****ing Days Like Today”. In her work, Jessie often incorporates improv techniques to help people tap into the things they need to become better communicators, team members and leaders. She also coaches organizations through Agile transition and cultural change. After recently completing my first improv class, and not feeling very confident that I “got it”, I had lots of questions. Jessie was kind enough to spend some time talking with me about my experience, the benefits improv can provide, what “yes, and…” really means, why it is important and the elements needed to create a safe space where people can thrive and be creative.



SHOW NOTES

00:00 Podcast Intro
01:58  Interview Start
02:22 What Jessie has been up to lately
03:42 Jessie’s work coaching people to help them amp up their presentation skills
04:45 The Creative Courage Summit
05:58 Jessie’s Book “CTRL SHIFT: 50 Games for 50 ****ing Days Like Today”
06:17 Intro to the Improv Discussion
07:00 Dave’s fears about the safety provided by the improv framework
07:46 “I’m happy to tell you your being dumb”
08:22 How can you have an environment that is supportive AND critical
08:41 Dave missed some important pieces
09:08 Learning from what makes you uncomfortable
10:04 It’s important to find the class that is right for you
11:50 How you establish a safe improv space
13:36 Safety comes from setting expectations, modeling behavior and getting to know people
16:12 Finding a way to use improv to build camaraderie with remote teams
18:20 Do you always have to “Yes, and…”
18:50 How “Yes, and” works, and the benefits it can bring
21:22 What skills improv can offer to individuals and teams working in an office setting
22:50 Advice from Jessie on how to pick the right class for you
25:19 Part of being creative involves tapping into your childlike self, but you have to feel safe going there
26:18 What if you can’t let go of everything and reach that childlike state?
28:20 Being mindful of the things you are resisting
30:02 Getting in touch with Jessie

CONTACTING JESSIE

http://www.improveffect.com
https://www.facebook.com/improveffect/
https://twitter.com/TheImprovEffect

LINKS

Jessie’s Book: “CTRL SHIFT: 50 Games for 50 ****ing Days Like Today” http://amzn.to/2rhOxPk
The Creative Courage Summit: http://CreativeCourageSummit.live
My Video Podcast interview with Jessie at the 2015 Agile Conference: https://vimeo.com/135568636