A podcast about Agile and Project Management
Do We Really Need A Scrum Master?
In a class recently, a student asked a question that caught me by surprise. He asked if Scrum Master was a necessary role. If the team was fully engaged in approaching the work with an Agile mindset, inspecting, and adapting from one Sprint to the next both with respect to the deliverable AND the way they work together, AND they were self-organizing, then why would they need a Scrum Master? And, if management was imposing a Scrum Master on a team that was functioning this way, wouldn’t that indicate a lack to trust in the team?
These are good questions, and while we discussed the topic during class, I found myself returning to it over and over. What I love about this question is that even though I have an answer to it in my head, the asking the question challenged that.
In this episode of the podcast, I’m joined by the person who asked the question, Kyle Macey, who works as a Senior Backend Engineer at Chow Now. And, because I wanted to do my best to keep my bias in check during the conversation, I asked a friend, Bjorn Jensen, if he’d be willing to lead the discussion. Bjorn and I volunteer for the Scrum Alliance TAC together. He’s not only a CST with a background in development, Bjorn has a level of openness and calmness that I only wish I could achieve.
Contacting Kyle Macey
Contacting Bjorn Jensen
Responsibility Immersion - August 2021
This podcast is also available in video form. You can find it here: https://youtu.be/0-Mha3nv6G4
The Responsibility Process is a system that provides you with tools that enable you to develop leadership skills by leading yourself first. Christopher Avery is now offering a 20-week Responsibility Immersion program where a small group of individuals will work together to learn, and deepen their understanding and practice of The Responsibility Process.
This interview features the creator of The Responsibility Process, Christopher Avery, Henning Wolf who is an Accredited Responsibility Mentor and a Certified Responsibility Workshop Leader who leads Responsibility Immersions in Germany, and Patricia Sappenfield, who has recently been through Responsibility Immersion. During the conversation, we discuss what the Responsibility Process is, how Immersion works and how you can learn more about it in advance of the workshop to make sure it is right for you.
This interview is being posted in advance of the September 2021 Responsibility Immersion which begins on September 8. For more information please go to: https://responsibility.com/immersion
Christopher Avery: https://www.linkedin.com/in/christopheravery/
Henning Wolf: https://www.selbstfuehren.de
Patricia Sappenfield: email@example.com
Dave Prior: https://drunkenpm.blogspot.com/
Tips For Engaging Big Consulting to Help You Prepare For Transformation w/ George Schlitz
In preparation for transforming the organization to Agile (or implementing some other significant organizational change), many companies will engage a third party to first assess how they are currently working, what the change would entail, and then they make recommendations on how to go about it. This can take anywhere from a few months to a few years. Once the recommendation on how to implement the change is delivered, it is often up to a separate outside company to come in and actually implement the change.
George Schlitz is someone who has spent a lot of time leading those implementation efforts. Along the way, he’s learned a lot about what a company can do to set itself up for success when they engage with the third party figuring out the “how” and also what a company can do to set itself up for the opposite of success. If you are working in an organization that has engaged a big consulting company to help you figure out the “how”, there is stuff in this interview that will be helpful. And if you work for people who are considering bringing in one of those big companies to help you figure out the “how”, it might be a good idea to ask them to check this out as well.
Prokanban with Colleen Johnson
In this episode of the podcast Colleen Johnson, CEO of ProKanban joins me to talk all about ProKanban. During the interview we cover how this new organization came about, the ProKanban Guide, the community they have been fostering, and ProKanban Certification.
If you aren’t familiar with Kanban, it is another approach to getting work done that fits under the Agile umbrella. It can look like Scrum, but it solves a different problem set and focuses on different aspects of the work. The ProKanban team has put together the ProKanban Guide explaining how it all works. They’ve also been developing a strong online community, training classes, and they’ve begun offering a certification called ProKanban I. In the interview, Colleen and I explore some of the differences between Scrum and Kanban, the ProKanban Guide, their course offering, why they created the certification, and why, in the already crowded field of Agile certifications, this one merits serious consideration.
To download a copy of the ProKanban Guide: https://prokanban.org/the-kanban-guide/
To learn more about ProKanban and ProKanban Certification:
To learn more about Women in Agile:
To learn more about Scatterspoke and how it can help you with Retrospectives:
Knowing How to Measure Progress in Agile Transformation w/ Ross Beurmann
When your organization is getting started with Agile Transformation, one of the more challenging questions is how to track progress. For organizations that are accustomed to measuring things, it is easy to get lost in the swamp of distracting metrics that are interesting, but not particularly helpful, as opposed to ones that provide your organization with the information it needs to make choices about how to become more efficient and deliver more value.
In this episode of the podcast, Ross Beurmann is back and we explore the idea of what to measure when you get started with Agile Transformation, how to measure it, and how critical it is to make sure that the things you are measuring actually provide you with the information you need to make informed choices. We also discuss the impact that measuring the wrong things can have on your ability to create lasting organizational change and offer tips on how to protect against that.
• Web: http://rossbeurmann.com/
• LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/rossbeurmann/
• Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
(Ross has joined me on a few other podcasts. If you’d like to check them out you can find them here: soundcloud.com/search?q=ross%20beurmann)
Disciplined Agile Certifications at PMI with Scott Ambler
This week my guest is Scott Ambler. Scott is the Vice President and Chief Scientist of Disciplined Agile at the Project Management Institute. He’s is also the co-founder of Disciplined Agile (DA), the creator of the Agile Modeling method and Agile Data methods, and he is the author of a number of books that focus on software development and Agile. (See links below.)
In this episode of the podcast, Scott and I discuss how PMI’s efforts in support of Agile have evolved since August 2019 when PMI acquired Disciplined Agile and Alan Shalloway’s FLEX. We also discuss how the PMBOK is evolving, and we dig into the Project Management Institute’s new Agile certification programs: what they focus on, who they are aimed at, and how they are different from the other Agile certifications.
PMI’s Agile Certifications: https://www.pmi.org/certifications/agile-certifications
PMI Speaker Request: https://www.pmi.org/about/press-media/speaking-engagements
Agile Modeling method: http://agilemodeling.com
Agile Data methods: http://agiledata.org
Scott’s books: http://www.ambysoft.com/books/
Disciplined Agile Blog: https://www.projectmanagement.com/blogs/611075/Disciplined-Agile
Personal Website: http://www.ambysoft.com