Tuesday , August 22 2017

How to Onboard New Scrum Team Members Fast and Reduce Risk

A scrum team is a carefully balanced ecosystem. When even one team member leaves and is replaced by someone new, it can throw the whole system into chaos if mismanaged. In an article for Scrum Alliance, Sanjeet Biswas describes some useful tips to ensure that the whole team is happy with the new arrangement. Maintaining Balance First, begin with the obvious—make sure new team members will have all of their necessary equipment ready to be …

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The Secret of How Amazon Keeps an Agile Mindset at Its Huge Size

Amazon is a world leader in business and technology, known for its innovation. And its innovations sometimes take quirky forms, as shown with the new Echo Look, which is equipped with a camera that can help you select the most fashionable outfit to wear for the day. As Howard Yu explains in an article for Forbes though, the quirky new functionality of Echo Look is actually part of a familiar pattern in the business’s mindset. …

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Does the Scrum Master Role Ever Go Away?

The scrum master essentially fulfills the Obi-Wan Kenobi role on the agile team. This person guides, coaches, and ensures that the Force *ahem* scrum is being used the right way. But when the whole team is living and breathing scrum, does the scrum master role remain necessary? Mike Cohn addresses this question in a short post for Mountain Goat Software. Here Today… The scrum master role does entail more than just building up the team. …

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The UK Is Losing £37 Billion Annually to Failed Agile IT Projects

An article at TechNative shares data from IT consultancy 6point6, who conducted a survey with 300 CIOs in the US and the UK. The findings might be described as “harsh.” For instance, 21 percent of US agile projects fail completely, and it is estimated that 32 percent of US and UK agile projects fail to some degree. Ouch The failure adds up to an approximate £37 billion loss for the UK. Equally worrying, half of …

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3 Big Mistakes That Early Scrum Masters Make

Ignorance is bliss, until your ignorance sends a cruise ship into an iceberg. And while it is true that everyone has to start somewhere, it is also true that you can learn from others’ mistakes before you make them yourself. In an article for Scrum Alliance, Aaron Tooth shares three mistakes he made in his early scrum master days that are insidiously easy to make yourself: Mistaking facilitation for coordination Assuming that disagreeable stakeholders do …

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Why Getting to Done Is So Important

Getting a big chunk of work done is always satisfying. Finishing a big chunk of work is doubly satisfying. And in business, getting to done is doubly important too. In a quick post for Mountain Goat Software, Mike Cohn reminds us why getting to done with a few pieces of work is better than getting halfway done with many pieces of work. Case Closed For one thing, it is difficult to provide useful feedback for …

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The 4 C’s for Perfect Business Requirements

In the pursuit of delivering better business requirements, product owners have wider-reaching role responsibilities than most. How can you as a product owner be sure you are excelling in the ways you develop requirements? In an article for Scrum Alliance, Alison Schestopol counts 4 C’s to know for stellar requirements: Complete Compliant Clear Concise Crazy Cool Tips For requirements to be “complete,” they must include both the explicit and implicit aspects. Explicit requirements are typically …

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The Three Biggest Challenges of Scaling Agile

Implementing agile is a bumpy ride, but the drive is manageable. Scaling agile, however, is a cross-country road trip, and you better have a good navigator. In an article for TechTarget, CEB IT practice leader Mark Tonsetic describes three major scaling challenges that IT leaders must address. These challenges were identified through collecting data from almost 300 agile teams over five years: Product owners are made, not born. Legacy funding processes are inadequate for scaling. …

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No More Limits! Why WIP Targets Are Better for Improving Team Performance

For decades now, the Operations Research and Industrial Engineering communities—and especially Lean and Theory of Constraints (TOC) practitioners—have preached the importance of limiting “work in progress,” or WIP, in order to improve flow in a process or system. The conceptual foundation for such WIP limits is known as “Little’s Law,” named after John Little for having provided the first proof of the theorem back in 1961. In order to boost the throughput of a system, Little’s Law asserts …

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Five Common Myths about Iterations

Typically, iterations are a common aspect of agile implementations. However, ideas of what an “iteration” actually is have mutated over time. In a post for the Clever PM, Cliff Gilley shares five tips that dispel false beliefs: Iteration does not always mean a “full bite of the sandwich.” Iteration does not mean doing the same thing every time. Iteration does not mean that every step is perfect. Iteration does not mean that you will go …

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