95 episodes

The Agile Mentors podcast is for agilists of all levels. Whether you’re new to agile and Scrum or have years of experience, listen in to find answers to your questions and new ways to succeed with agile.

Agile Mentors Podcast Brian Milner and Guests

    • Technology
    • 5.0 • 40 Ratings

The Agile Mentors podcast is for agilists of all levels. Whether you’re new to agile and Scrum or have years of experience, listen in to find answers to your questions and new ways to succeed with agile.

    #94: Connecting Teams and Leadership with Anthony Coppedge

    #94: Connecting Teams and Leadership with Anthony Coppedge

    Join Brian and Anthony Coppedge as they unlock the secrets to bridging the team-leadership divide. Learn how to navigate through fear, short-term thinking, and the transformative power of Agile within top-tier organizations like IBM.





    Overview

    In this episode of the Agile Mentors Podcast, Brian sits down for a groundbreaking conversation with Anthony Coppedge, of IBM and creator of the Retrospective Radar.


    They delve deep into the disconnects plaguing organizations between their teams and leadership. From overcoming fear and fostering long-term value to harnessing the strength of middle management and the critical role of data-driven decision-making, this episode offers a treasure trove of insights for those looking to drive agility and foster a culture of transparency and success in their organizations.


    Join us to explore how translating team realities into leadership vision can catalyze meaningful change and position companies for enduring success.


    Listen Now to Discover:

    [1:18] - Brian welcomes Anthony Coppedge, IBM's business agility expert.

    [2:40] - Unveiling the core issue, Anthony explores how fear fuels the disconnect between teams and their leaders, offering insights into bridging this crucial gap.

    [4:04] - Anthony highlights the power for the team in delivering real value for the benefit of others.

    [5:14] - Hear Anthony unpack the significance of scalability in systems and processes, highlighting its role in enabling organizations to adapt and thrive, and what the conversations with the teams can look like to achieve scalability.

    [6:00] - Anthony lays out vivid examples of the existing gap between teams and leadership, offering insightful strategies needed to effectively bridge this divide.

    [7:50] - Highlighting the pivotal role of middle management, Anthony suggests leveraging these key players as connectors between teams and top leadership.

    [8:50] - Anthony shows how to effectively convey the ground-level realities of teams to leadership, ensuring their efforts are directly linked to the organization's overarching direction.

    [10:30] - Brian emphasizes the critical need to grasp what drives leaders, advocating for the translation of team insights into a language that resonates with leadership priorities.

    [13:59] - Anthony explores how adopting a client-centric approach fosters transparency in communication, ensuring clarity and alignment across all levels.

    [16:31] - Bridge the gap between your leadership and teams by helping the leaders to expand their Agile language and experience with Mountain Goat Software’s Agile For Leaders Course.

    [18:34] - Anthony proposes actionable strategies and the importance of teams spearheading cultural shifts within their organizations, steering them towards embracing Agile principles.

    [21:43] - Highlighting the strategic use of data, Anthony discusses how it can illuminate results and motivate shifts towards better practices.

    [29:14] - Brian unveils Anthony's innovative approach to reflection and growth with 'The Retrospective Radar.'

    [36:11] - Brian shares a big thank you to Anthony for joining him on the show and invites listeners to connect with him on LinkedIn.

    [37:27] - We invite you to share the podcast with friends and subscribe to the Agile Mentors Podcast. Do you have feedback or a great idea for an episode of the show? Great! Just send us an email.

    [38:06] - If you’d like to continue this discussion on the episode specific discussion forums on the Agile Mentors Community. You get a year of free membership into that site by taking any class with Mountain Goat Software.

    [38:48] - Brian invites listeners to join him live and in person at the 2024 Global Scrum Gathering in New Orleans and the Agile2024 conference in Dallas.


    References and resources mentioned in the show:

    Anthony Coppedge

    Retrospective Radar

    Retrospective Radar Template

    Creative Commons usage rights for the Retrospective Radar

    Agile For Leaders

    Join the Agile Mentors Co

    • 39 min
    #93: The Rise of Human Skills and Agile Acumen with Evan Leybourn

    #93: The Rise of Human Skills and Agile Acumen with Evan Leybourn

    Explore the skills revolution with Brian and Evan Leybourn of the Business Agility Institute as they dive into a landmark study on the skills shaping today's workforce. Learn why adaptability, human skills, and agile acumen are the keys to success.


    Overview

    In an enlightening episode, Brian sits down with Evan Leybourn, co-founder of the Business Agility Institute, to delve into recent research findings on the essential skills for the modern workforce.


    They discuss the paramount importance of human skills over technical abilities in hiring, the emergence of 'pi-shaped' professionals who excel in multiple domains, and the critical role of agile acumen across various job roles. Additionally, they address the pressing need for educational systems to pivot from traditional role-based learning to a more versatile skill-based approach.


    This episode is a treasure trove for anyone looking to navigate the workforce's future, offering deep insights into adapting and thriving in an ever-evolving professional landscape.


    Listen Now to Discover:

    [1:17] - Join Brian in a captivating session with Evan Leybourn, the innovative author and co-founder of the Business Agility Institute, as they explore groundbreaking insights into agility and workforce evolution.

    [2:32] - Discover the unexpected findings from Evan's recent study, ‘Skills in the New World of Work,’ on the workforce's most sought-after skills and their pivotal role in modern hiring practices.

    [4:50] - Brian sheds light on the rising value of soft, or human, skills in the workforce, suggesting a pivotal expansion of Scrum Master skills to embrace these vital attributes.

    [8:00] - Evan reveals their unexpected discovery: organizations are increasingly seeking 'pi-shaped' skills that blend diverse areas of expertise.

    [12:45] - Perfect your human skills and refresh your Agile approach with Mountain Goat Software’s Advanced Certified ScrumMaster® and Advanced Certified Scrum Product Owner® courses. For further details, visit the Mountain Goat Software training schedule.

    [15:05] - Unpacking the idea of 'pi-shaped' professionals, Evan details how these unique individuals bring multiple skill sets to one role, elevating their effectiveness and output, using a full-stack developer as an example.

    [16:22] - Evan tackles the provocative statement that Agile is dead, offering insights and counterarguments to this bold claim.

    [21:47] - Evan highlights a key finding: Agile Acumen emerges as the runner-up in the most coveted skills during the hiring process across organizations.

    [24:50] - Evan stresses an important takeaway: 'The skills you have are valuable,' pointing out that the essence of Agile expertise transcends the exact wording of job descriptions.

    [27:05] - Highlighting a necessary evolution in learning, Evan advocates for a move towards skill-based training and education, away from traditional role-focused models, to better prepare for the workforce of tomorrow.

    [29:21] - Brian shares his gratitude for Evan and his work to help better understand the job market.

    [30:02] - Brian invites listeners to join both him and Evan live and in person at the Global Scrum Gathering 2024 in New Orleans.

    [30:33] - We invite you to subscribe to the Agile Mentors Podcast. Do you have feedback or a great idea for an episode of the show? Great! Just send us an email.

    [31:03] - If you’d like to continue this discussion, join the Agile Mentors Community. You get a year of free membership into that site by taking any class with Mountain Goat Software, such as CSM or CSPO. We'd love to see you in one of Mountain Goat Software's classes, you can find the schedule here.


    References and resources mentioned in the show:

    Evan Leybourn

    Skills in the New World of Work: Which Agile Skills are Most In-Demand in Today's Workforce?

    Business Agility Institute

    Directing The Agile Organization: A Lean Approach To Business Management by Evan Leybourn

    #noprojects: A Culture of Continu

    • 32 min
    #92: Navigating Scrum Anti-Patterns with Stefan Wolpers

    #92: Navigating Scrum Anti-Patterns with Stefan Wolpers

    Join Brian and Stefan Wolpers as they explore the labyrinth of Scrum anti-patterns, shedding light on the crucial shifts needed in communication, event understanding, and organizational empowerment for Agile success.


    Overview

    Brian welcomes special guest Stefan Wolpers as they explore the maze of Scrum anti-patterns.


    Discover the art of tackling communication breakdowns, unravel the misunderstandings that plague Scrum events, confront the systemic issues of organizational anti-patterns, and challenge the rigidity of dogmatism in Agile practices.


    Whether you're a seasoned Scrum practitioner or new to the Agile philosophy, this conversation between Brian and Stefan will arm you with the insights needed to navigate the complexities of Scrum, enhance team collaboration, and drive successful Agile transformations. Tune in to transform your understanding and practice of Scrum, and take a step towards mastering the dynamic world of Agile.


    Listen Now to Discover:

    [1:06] - ​​Join Brian as he sits down with Stefan Wolpers, a seasoned Professional Scrum Trainer and the mastermind behind ‘The Scrum Anti-Patterns Guide,’ for a deep dive into the pitfalls to avoid for Scrum success.

    [2:33] - Discover the power of inversion with Stefan, as he elucidates this groundbreaking learning principle, challenging traditional methods and revolutionizing our approach to personal and professional development.

    [5:21] - Stefan delves into the critical issue of communication breakdown and assumptions among teams, revealing effective strategies to address and navigate these common pain points.

    [10:01] - Listen as Stefan highlights the transformative impact of trust building and team bonding, revealing their significance as key elements in bridging cultural differences and bringing remote teams closer together.

    [12:02] - Brought to you by Mountain Goat Software, the Agile Mentors Podcast invites you to enhance your Scrum skills through the Certified Scrum Product Owner® course. Explore a world of Agile learning opportunities by checking out Mountain Goat Software's extensive training schedule.

    [13:03] - Join Stefan as he delves into the Scrum framework, highlighting the Daily Scrum and Sprint Planning as events ripe with anti-patterns, and providing guidance on overcoming these obstacles for smoother sprints.

    [18:10] - Listen as Stefan illuminates the critical anti-pattern of lacking empowerment within organizations, emphasizing its widespread impact and proposing pathways to cultivate a more empowered workforce.

    [22:08] - Explore with Brian the significance of an anti-dogmatic stance, highlighting its role as a pivotal anti-pattern in fostering innovation and adaptability in Agile environments.

    [26:14] - Brian shares a big thank you to Stefan for joining him on the show.

    [29:01] - If you’d like to continue this discussion, join the Agile Mentors Community.

    [30:01] - We invite you to subscribe to the Agile Mentors Podcast. Do you have feedback, a question, or a great idea for an episode of the show? Great! Just send us an email.


    References and resources mentioned in the show:

    Stefan Wolpers

    The Scrum Anti-Patterns Guide by Stefan Wolpers

    Certified Scrum Product Owner®

    Training Mountain Goat Software Certified Scrum and Agile Training Schedule

    Mike Cohn’s Letting Go of Knowing

    Join the Agile Mentors Community


    Want to get involved?

    This show is designed for you, and we’d love your input. 



    Enjoyed what you heard today? Please leave a rating and a review. It really helps, and we read every single one. 
    Got an Agile subject you’d like us to discuss or a question that needs an answer? Share your thoughts with us at podcast@mountaingoatsoftware.com


    This episode’s presenters are:

    Brian Milner is SVP of coaching and training at Mountain Goat Software. He's passionate about making a difference in people's day-to-day work, influenced by his own experience of transitioning to Scrum and seeing improvements

    • 31 min
    #91: Revolutionizing HR with Pia-Maria Thorén

    #91: Revolutionizing HR with Pia-Maria Thorén

    Dive into an enlightening conversation with Brian Milner and HR innovator Pia Maria Thorén on the transformative power of Agile in HR and leadership. Discover a people-centric approach that champions attitude, growth, and empathy.


    Overview

    Join Brian Milner in this compelling episode as he sits down with Agile and HR expert Pia Maria Thorén, who shares her insights on revolutionizing Human Resources and leadership with Agile project management principles.


    Pia Maria delves into the critical shift from traditional hiring practices to prioritizing attitude and potential, fostering a nurturing candidate experience, and the vital role of team involvement in the hiring process.


    Through her advocacy for empathy and a people-centric approach, Pia Maria outlines how understanding and support can transform handling performance challenges and layoffs into opportunities for growth. Tune in to explore how these strategies not only enhance HR practices but also pave the way for more dynamic, resilient organizations.


    Listen Now to Discover:

    [01:13] - Dive into an enlightening conversation with Pia-Maria Thorén, the visionary author behind 'Agile People' and a leading expert in Agile human resources.

    [02:30] - Join Pia-Maria as she unfolds the compelling narrative of Agile's breakthrough into HR practices, crafting a more effective and adaptive approach to leadership and human resources management.

    [07:46] - Hear from Pia-Maria as she unveils the secrets behind Agile's innovative recruitment and hiring strategies, focused on creating an environment where candidates are eager to work and flourish.

    [09:44] - Brian explores the catalyst behind Agile hiring practices, pondering how organizations kick-start the recruitment process when their sights are set not on vacancies but on attracting the perfect fit.

    [10:55] - Shifting the focus from traditional job slots to dynamic team contributions, Pia-Maria introduces the transformative concept of 't-shaped' teams in recruitment, urging a reevaluation of how we define the ideal candidate in job descriptions and hiring processes.

    [13:08] - Brian draws upon Simon Sinek's insightful video, dissecting the intricate relationship between trust and performance in teams, and highlighting the importance of trust in the makeup of high-performing teams.

    [15:00] - The Agile Mentors Podcast is brought to you by Mountain Goat Software. Elevate your expertise with their Certified Scrum Product Owner® course and gain exclusive access to Mike Cohn’s Agile Mentors Community for a full year of continuous coaching and support. Explore the full spectrum of Certified Scrum and Agile Training on the Mountain Goat Software schedule.

    [16:44] - Pia-Maria introduces a groundbreaking perspective on measuring team success, steering away from individual performance metrics and static goals towards a more dynamic and holistic assessment strategy.

    [21:37] - Pia-Maria delves into the complex dynamics of employee departures and layoffs within the Agile HR framework, questioning how these principles reshape traditional approaches to such challenging situations.

    [28:11] - Pia-Maria raises compelling counterpoints to the general avoidance of specialization, inviting listeners to consider the circumstances under which honing in on specialized skills could be advantageous.

    [29:24] - Brian shares a big thank you to Pia-Maria for joining him on the show, inviting listeners to connect through Agile People or LinkedIn.

    [31:07] - If you’d like to continue this discussion, join the Agile Mentors Community. You get a year of free membership into that site by taking any class with Mountain Goat Software, such as CSM, CSPO, or Mike Cohn’s Live Online Better User Stories class, where we get right into the good stuff and have some deep discussions. We'd love to see you in one of Mountain Goat Software's classes, you can find the schedule here.

    [31:40] - We invite you to subscribe to the Agile Mentors Podcast. Do you

    • 33 min
    #90: Mastering Agile Coaching with Cherie Silas

    #90: Mastering Agile Coaching with Cherie Silas

    Join Brian Milner and Master Coach Cherie Silas as they discuss the intricate dance between professional coaching and Agile coaching and unlock the secrets to empowering Agile transformations.


    Overview

    Join us on a captivating journey with Brian Milner and Cherie Silas, the visionary founder of Tandem Coaching, as they delve deep into the nuances that distinguish professional coaching from Agile coaching and learn why adopting a coaching mindset is crucial for effective Agile coaching.


    Explore the pivotal role of an Agile coach within an organization and the fine art of balancing consulting with true coaching to foster empowerment and self-solution finding.


    Cherie unravels the complexities of Agile practices, the thin line between coaching and counseling, and the transformative Tandem Coaching program.


    This episode is a treasure trove of insights for anyone looking to understand the essence of agile transformation and how it's not just about adopting new practices but about achieving meaningful business outcomes. Whether you're an aspiring agile coach or a seasoned professional seeking to deepen your understanding, this conversation is your gateway to elevating your agile journey.


    Listen Now to Discover:

    [01:18] - Join Brian as he greets Cherie Silas, the visionary behind Tandem Coaching, co-author of 'Enterprise Agile Coaching,' and a revered Master Coach.

    [03:38] - Listen in as Cherie clarifies the essential differences and intersections between professional coaching and the dynamic field of Agile coaching.

    [07:07] - Explore with Cherie as she articulates the nuanced differences between being labeled an 'Agile Coach' and embodying the true essence of Agile coaching.

    [09:15] - Cherie shares her expertise on striking the perfect balance between consulting and coaching, highlighting strategies for blending these two vital roles effectively.

    [12:12] - Brian highly endorses Cherie’s dynamic, mentorship-driven Professional Coach Training for anyone looking to deeply enrich their coaching abilities.

    [14:42] - Learn from Cherie the critical role of engaging as a thought partner in coaching clients, a fundamental strategy for fostering profound and effective Agile coaching connections.

    [18:00] - Discover with Cherie the dynamic strategy of engaging clients with thought-provoking questions like, "What's the challenge we're tackling?" and "What's the goal we're striving towards?" This approach not only clarifies objectives but also charts the course towards achieving them, making each coaching session a journey of mutual exploration and growth.

    [22:04] - If you're on the path to becoming a Certified Scrum Master, look no further than Mountain Goat Software's engaging, top-rated courses. Beyond the interactive classes, you'll gain a year-long membership to the Agile Mentors Community—a vibrant space to both give and receive mentorship. Dive deeper into your Agile practice and explore the Mountain Goat Software Training Schedule today.

    [24:47] - Join Cherie as she unveils the foundational pillars of becoming an exceptional coach - the art of active listening, the skill of insightful questioning, and the journey through coaching training.

    [27:17] - Brian invites listeners into a thought-provoking exploration of the nuanced differences between coaching and counseling, questioning how to skillfully navigate the boundaries that define and differentiate them.

    [31:44] - Brian shares a big thank you to Cherie for joining him on the show, inviting listeners to pick up the book, ‘Enterprise Agile Coaching’ and highly recommends Tandem Coaching’s training programs.

    [33:15] - We invite you to subscribe to the Agile Mentors Podcast. Do you have feedback, a great idea, or a guest suggestion for an episode of the show? Great! Just send us an email.


    References and resources mentioned in the show:

    Tandem Coaching

    Enterprise Agile Coaching: Sustaining Organizational Change Through Invitational Agile Coaching by

    • 35 min
    #89: Transformational One-on-Ones with Avipaul Bhandari

    #89: Transformational One-on-Ones with Avipaul Bhandari

    Join Brian and Avipaul Bhandari as they uncover a secret to transformative Agile teams. Discover how one-on-one conversations can redefine team dynamics and even scaled organizational culture.


    Overview

    In this episode of the Agile Mentors Podcast, Avipaul Bhandari, a seasoned Agile coach, takes us through the critical role of one-on-one meetings in nurturing agile teams.


    Avipaul sheds light on how such meetings are pivotal in building trust, understanding individual perspectives, and fostering a culture of empathy. By adopting a coaching mindset, Scrum Masters and coaches can empower team members to lead the conversation, encouraging them to uncover and propose their own solutions.


    Listen in as they explore the profound impact these meetings have on scaling agile principles and catalyzing cultural transformation within organizations. Through emphasizing individual strengths and ensuring a safe environment for honest dialogue, one-on-ones emerge as a key strategy for enhancing team performance and achieving agile excellence.


    Tune in to learn how you can leverage one-on-one meetings to unlock the full potential of your team and spearhead a shift in your organizational culture.


    Listen Now to Discover:

    [01:15] - Brian warmly welcomes Avipaul Bhandari, a distinguished Agile coach and musician, joining us by popular demand from our listener community.

    [02:26] - Avipaul unveils the secrets behind effective one-on-one interactions and their ripple effect on enhancing organizational culture.

    [05:54] - Avipaul heralds human connection as a key driver of positivity and cohesion within teams, advocating for its impact on team success.

    [07:14] - Discover how Avipaul successfully navigated resistance to one-on-one meetings, turning reluctance into productive conversations, even from those claiming to have nothing to say.

    [10:55] - Mountain Goat Software is the sponsor for this podcast. Whether you’re looking to get Certified ScrumMaster® (CSM) or Certified Scrum Product Owner® (CSPO) training or want to take an Advanced Certified ScrumMaster® (ACSM) class, click here to see what we have to offer.

    [12:00] - Brian discusses the profound impact of empathy and Simon Sinek's approach to nurturing a culture of psychological safety.

    [13:05] - Avipaul shares insights on enhancing empathy in the team members and yourself through the intimate dialogue of one-on-one meetings.

    [19:23] - Avipaul unpacks how one-on-ones within scaled teams can significantly boost processes and deeply motivate team members.

    [23:10] - Brian highlights how these interactions can embody and influence the broader company culture through demonstration, creating a ripple effect of positive change.

    [23:47] - Avipaul makes a compelling case for the power of respect in eliciting the best performance from everyone.

    [26:43] - Brian shares a big thank you to Avipaul for joining him on the show and the lister who suggested him! If you have a topic or person you would love to hear on the podcast, send your suggestions to podcast@mountaingoatsoftware.com

    [27:41] - If you’d like to continue this discussion, join the Agile Mentors Community. You get a year of free membership into that site by taking any class with Mountain Goat Software, such as CSM or CSPO. We also have Advanced Certified ScrumMaster®, Advanced Certified Scrum Product Owner®, and Mike Cohn’s Better User Stories Course, where we get right into the good stuff and have some deep discussions. We'd love to see you in one of Mountain Goat Software's classes; you can find the schedule here.

    [28:41] - We invite you to subscribe to the Agile Mentors Podcast. Do you have feedback or a great idea for an episode of the show? Great! Just send us an email.


    References and resources mentioned in the show:

    Avipaul Bhandari

    Listen to Avipaul’s music on Spotify

    Simon Sinek’s Books

    Mike Cohn’s Better User Stories Course

    Subscribe to the Agile Mentors Podcast

    Certified ScrumMaster® Traini

    • 29 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
40 Ratings

40 Ratings

JessCu ,

Woah!

This podcast was recommended to me by two different people and I finally gave it a listen, and woah. I’m taken aback and how good it is! Short and to the point conversations with solid pointers to try on your teams.

Ryan Gottfredson ,

Great Comprehensive Agile Perspective

For Agile fans, this is a great, comprehensive agile podcast that covers bot the process side of agility as well as the psychological side of agility. As such, it is sure to help you elevate your agile game.

Kati2019 ,

Highly Recommend

Love how practical this podcast it. I also appreciate the different guests, so I can gain new perspectives on how others approach Agile.

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