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Monthly Archives: March 2017

Retrospectives above the Team Level

Agile teams understand the value of retrospectives to improve how individuals work together. Why not try spreading that magic beyond just your team though? In a post at his website, Ben Linders discusses some ways you might apply retrospectives to multiple teams and to stakeholders. Bigger Perspective Why would multiple teams want to do a retrospective together? Well, as Linders notes, there are some issues in an organization that are systemic of that organization. In …

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The Challenge of Hybrid Agile-Waterfall Projects

The verdict is still out on the effectiveness of hybrid agile-waterfall approaches, because the available data conflicts with itself. But it is still not surprising when such approaches fail. In an article for TechBeacon, Yvette Francino explains why hybrid approaches are especially susceptible to failure. A Tangled Web Francino looks particularly at data from Hewlett Packard, where 32 percent of 403 development and IT professionals used a hybrid agile-waterfall model—and their results ranked the worst …

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4 Common Mistaken Beliefs of New Scrum Masters

The thing about passion is that it can become twisted into zealotry, which is a bad thing if you happen to believe things that are not quite true. Even scrum masters are susceptible to such dangers. In an article for Scrum Alliance, Ujjal Banerjee describes four common misconceptions that new scrum masters might have about their role: “I am the owner of the scrum team, so I must manage all the work.” “It’s my team, …

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7 Ways Internal Auditing Might Become Agile

Agile is kind of becoming the new salt (Splenda?). People want to sprinkle a little of it on everything and see what happens. In an article for Forbes, Steve Denning considers the applications of agile for internal auditing. He examines recent research by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) and shares seven keys for agile internal auditing: Active and broader involvement in disruption Being prepared and adaptive Assessing the risk of future disruption Proactive involvement in disruptive events Flexible …

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The Myth of Cultural Change

Culture is the air that the business breathes, but changing the culture is not as simple as installing a new air conditioner. In fact, “changing” company culture may not even be possible, in the popular sense at least. In a post at Extreme Uncertainty, Sydney-based IT worker Leon Tranter explains why he thinks all culture change initiatives are bound to have little final effect on businesses. Breathe In, Breathe Out It is not difficult to …

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6 Signs Your QA Is Not Agile

Making the QA team agile involves more than including them in development discussions; it also involves all the other stuff that makes teams agile. It can be difficult for teams to realize that they are not fully agile though. In an article for DZone, Charles Moga shares six signs your QA is not agile: Writing sprint test plans Waiting for developers to finish coding Testing being one sprint behind Automation being one or more sprints …

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3 Tips for Becoming an Agile Leader

While the underlying principles are always the same, leadership can take many different forms depending upon what needs to be led. In a series of posts at her blog, Johanna Rothman discusses how you can lead an agile transformation gone awry. Here are three tips to take charge: Define your why. Decide who to approach. Create allies. Back from the Brink If the transformation has taken a hard left turn, the first step in remedying …

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The Quest for Buy-in on Agile: 4 Tips

A lot of varied people need to nod their heads before an agile implementation of any size can get off the ground. In an article for IT Pro, Joe Curtis shares some tips for how to make the stars align in just the right ways. Here are four steps to remember: Find people who agree with you. Find the right project. Focus on business goals. Achieve business value. Agree to Agile Surely other people in …

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The Data on How Agile and DevOps Are Accelerating Value

Agile is getting more popular all the time, and DevOps is riding its coattails. CA Technologies with Coleman Parkes Research has surveyed 1,770 senior business and IT executives globally to learn about how agile approaches are creating new value in businesses. Notably, agile maturity levels make an eye-opening difference in how much value is derived. Efficiency Rising More than four in five businesses are using agile approaches, but only a third have deployed agile or …

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Cross-Functional Teams Aren’t Supermen

Superman has super strength, super speed, heat vision, icy breath, and flight, among other things. As far as super heroes go, he is pretty all-purpose. There is a mistaken notion that cross-functional team members must be equally versatile. Mike Cohn explains in a post for Mountain Goat Software why such thinking is actually impractical. Super Effort The idea of a cross-functional team is that, together, they can tackle an expansive multitude of tasks. Often, the …

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