Category: Agile Tools

Agile2016 Souvenir Booklist

| By agilevelocity in Agile, Agile Tools | 2 Comments

Agile2016 books

A few things I learned attending Agile2016:

  1. There are a lot of Agilists. Over 2,500 attended Agile2016–the biggest one yet.
  2. Agilists know how to socialize.
  3. There’s no board game you can’t giantize.
  4. Books are everything. They are the life force that sustain and grow our community.

For every keynote and session I attended, at least one book was cited as a resource or inspiration. They were mentioned casually like how one talks about an old friend and reverently like how one speaks of a favorite professor. The following is my souvenir Agile2016 reading list. Please feel free to add to the list in the comments below.

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Adventures In Agile Marketing: The Editorial Calendar

| By Resalin Rago in Agile, Agile Marketing, Agile Tools | 0 Comments

 

Photo courtesy of danceacademyusa.com
Photo courtesy of danceacademyusa.com

 

When was the last time that your editorial calendar got a makeover? As a marketer before Agile (BA), my editorial calendar was pretty standard: title, info, status, and dates. It was the piece of data that, I now know, was a very waterfall way of creating content. Before Agile, I never realized how much risk was involved with every blog post that went out the door.

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Shorten Feedback Cycles

| By David Hawks in Agile, Agile Tools, Lean, Process, Product Development, Product Owner | 0 Comments

Part 3 of 6 in the “Double the Value in Half the Time” series based on David Hawks’ presentation from Keep Austin Agile 2015. Stay tuned for subsequent posts…

The third problem holding teams back is long feedback loops. Some of us have long feedback loops, while others have no feedback loops at all! And therefore we’re not learning. We’re not getting new information.

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5 Ways Executive Leadership Can Affect the Success of an Agile Adoption

| By Mike Lepine in Agile, Agile Tools, Leadership, Product Development, ScrumMaster, Uncategorized | 0 Comments

According to the 2015 State of Agile Survey, the top three benefits of an agile adoption are:

  1. The ability to manage changing priorities
  2. Improved team productivity
  3. Greater project visibility

We’ve found that executive leadership plays an integral role in the success of an agile adoption. Here are the top 5 things executive leadership can do to realize these benefits. Read More »

Advanced Release Charting Template – Part 2

| By agilevelocity in Agile, Agile Tools | 0 Comments

In the first part of this blog series, we introduced the Advanced Release Chart Template and discussed how to communicate progress to customers and stakeholders using burnup and burndown charts.  The second and final part of this blog series drills into the details of what’s being delivered in the release to help drive decisions and answer more specific questions about scope.  Specifically, we’ll focus on prioritization and forecasting against the product backlog.




Get the Release Template Here



Prioritization (Working on the Right Things)

Forecasted burnup and burnup charts are usually the appropriate level of information to communicate progress to people interested in knowing if you’ll “hit the date” or “when the work will be completed”.

Those charts display how much work was completed and what effort is remaining, but it doesn’t communicate if you’re working on the right things.  It treats the release backlog as one single unit and offers a binary response to the questions:

  • how much will be delivered by x date?
  • when will y scope be delivered?

If you are strictly focused on output, then answering these questions is sufficient.  We offer a way to look inside the backlog to drive decisions about what’s really important.

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Advanced Release Charting Template – Part 1

| By agilevelocity in Agile, Agile Tools | 0 Comments

In October 2012, we released our first downloadable template to help forecast and chart release progress.  Since that time, we’ve helped many organizations transition to Agile and found some recurring needs that have driven the creation of the Advanced Release Charting template:

  • Set expectations about deadlines and report to stakeholders.  Will the desired scope be done by the deadline?  Is the project still on track?  How can we ensure successful delivery?  What should we tell our customers?  What work has been identified but not estimated (i.e. not reflected in the forecast)?
  • Prioritizing the backlog items within large projects.  All too often projects are seen as all or nothing when in fact there is room for discussion about the importance and impact differences.  Are you working on the right things?  Are they all valuable?  Is the investment proportional to the value?
  • Backlog items are often too small to report against.  Customers and stakeholders are more interested in understanding which high-level features are at risk or how they are progressing.
  • Product owners need to a better way to look at their backlog and understand which items are least likely to make it.

In the first installment of this two part blog series, we will focus on high level release planning and tracking.  Understanding how to communicate at this level is the first step in managing expectation with stakeholders and customers.




Get the Release Template Here




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Kanban vs. Scrum – How to Choose?

| By David Hawks in Agile Tools, Kanban/ Lean, Scrum | 1 Comment

Kanban vs. Scrum – How to Choose?

apples-and-oranges

My clients frequently ask me when to use Kanban and when they should use Scrum. To form a recommendation, these are some of the questions I ask:

Do your priorities change often? Do you have trouble locking scope for 1-2 weeks at a time? Do you have more than 25% scope churn during a 2 week period?