Agile at Scale Requires a Special Kind of Leadership: Guest Blog Series

Aug 13, 2019 1:11:05 PM / by Cliff Berg (Guest Blogger) posted in Agile Organizational Design, Team, Agile Organization, Agile Team Design, Agile Team Facilitator, ICAgile, Cliff Berg, agile leadership

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It’s not all about the team.

For Agile to work in a large program or a large organization, the cross-team issues are even more important than how well teams function individually. This is a common phenomenon in the world: that relationships between things are even more important than the things.

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Don’t Take Baby Steps: Guest Blog Series

Jul 30, 2019 8:00:00 AM / by Cliff Berg (Guest Blogger) posted in DevOPs, BDD, Agile Organization, User Story Mapping, Agile Transformation, Digital Transformation

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Teams are not constrained by how much they can learn. They are constrained by how much they are allowed to try, as well as by how much they don’t know what they don’t know.

When Agile adoption struggles in a large organization, it is almost always because managers are in the way—that is, teams are blocked by rules or upper level decisions—as well as because teams don’t know that there are better ways than what they are accustomed to doing. Those are the two predominant kinds of constraint on performance that one tends to see.

Rules exist for a reason: to manage risk. It is therefore unreasonable to expect that managers will just say “Do whatever you think is best”. To say that would be to abdicate their responsibility to manage risk for the organization. Doing that would also lead to chaos: each team would invent its own methods, and so the organization would cease to be one: it would devolve into a collection of tiny tribes.

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Non-Technical Agile Leads to Waterfall: Guest Blog Series

Jul 28, 2019 1:20:50 PM / by Cliff Berg (Guest Blogger) posted in Agile, Agile Organizational Design, Agile Organization, Agile Coaching, Modernized Technology, Product Portfolio Management, Agile Transformation, Digital Transformation, Waterfall, Guest Blog, Cliff Berg

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There is a trend today that I find troubling: non-technical release train engineers, Agile coaches, or others in Agile leadership roles who are non-technical, leading the way for Agile ceremony planning without including technical thought leaders who know the technical side of Agile (which today is CI/CD).

Technical practices are the backbone of Agile. It is the technical practices that make Agile possible. If you don’t center discussions around technical enabling practices, you are wasting your time.

Don’t get me wrong: there are non-technical things about Agile. Things like a Lean Portfolio, retrospective, and backlog grooming. But if you want to improve those processes, you have to include a discussion of the technical enablers that make improvement possible.

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Agile Coaching Intensive Series - Episode 3 - The Agile Coaching Roadmap

Mar 19, 2019 6:20:46 PM / by Ken Fritz posted in Agile Organization, Agile Coaching, Agile Team Facilitator, ICAgile

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In the third and final episode of our Agile Coaching Intensive series - Ken Fritz (Director of Software Delivery) overviews the agile coaching roadmap and key agile mindset shifts that come along with agile coaching. Watch this episode to unpack the career path and impact of an agile coach.

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Agile Coaching Intensive Series - Episode 2 - The 5 W's of the Agile Team Facilitator

Mar 11, 2019 9:33:43 AM / by Ken Fritz posted in Agile Organization, Agile Coaching, Agile Team Facilitator

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In the second episode of our Agile Coaching Intensive series - Ken Fritz (Director of Software Delivery) overviews the who, what, when, where and why of an Agile Team Facilitator. Watch this episode to unpack the evolution of an agile team facilitator in career path of agile coaching. 

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Agile Coaching Intensive Series - Episode 1 - Agile Coaching Roles

Mar 4, 2019 1:01:17 PM / by Ken Fritz posted in Agile Organization, Agile Coaching, ICAgile

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In the first episode of our Agile Coaching Intensive series - Ken Fritz (Director of Software Delivery) overviews the four main pathways of an agile coach's career and how the agile coach interacts with the rest of the organization.  

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The 3 Agile Foundations of Release Orientation

Jul 4, 2018 12:00:00 AM / by Naeem Hussain posted in Release Orientation

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In order for an organization to be successful with Continuous Business Value Delivery® the organization has to set a new destination and has to create a “new” route to reach this destination. This means, we have to REVERSE ENGINEER the entire delivery process to maximize value creation at a rapid pace.

The three key areas that need to be lean and automated, the foundations of a Release Oriented organization are 3 major process areas:

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Making the Agile Move

Jun 28, 2018 12:01:00 AM / by Brian posted in Release Orientation

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There are many considerations on how to make the move from Project Orientation to Release Orientation. Probably more than any other, the key is a belief in moving your organization’s mindset to the new of way of thinking and recognizing that the value of the old project container has vanished in an agile delivery model.

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Envision Your Agile Destination - Release Orientation

Jun 25, 2018 12:00:00 AM / by Brian posted in Release Orientation, Digital Strategy, Assessment

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An agile transformation journey implies a starting point, where you are now, and a destination. That destination might not be the final end point for your transformation journey, but that destination is somewhere you know you want to go – more automation, faster cycle times, higher quality, unimpeded flow from business intent to development, or just a happier place for everyone to work. A perfect destination to choose is Release Orientation.

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Seeing the World Through Agile-Colored Glasses

May 1, 2018 12:00:00 AM / by Brian posted in Agile

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There are many misconceptions about what Agile means. Here are a few of the most common that I've heard:

  • Agile is a development methodology. Well, not really, but there are a group of methods that can all be considered Agile.
  • Agile is the same thing as Scrum. They are not one and the same. Scrum is one of the best-known and widely-used Agile frameworks, but there are other frameworks that are still considered Agile.
  • Agile is a free-for-all way of developing software. Nothing could be further from the truth. Done right, Agile provides the basis for some of the most disciplined software delivery practices available.

So then, what is Agile?

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