Q: What are good ways to get teams started with …
The discussion began with one team’s path. They started by creating a Kanban board to display their workflow, post the work, and manage the flow. They reviewed the requests to right size them to make the task similar in size. To ensure communicate in a timely manner among the team, they meet on a daily bases to discuss the work on the board and address any blocked tasks.
Before continuing with other teams’ path, we began to discuss the similarities and differences between their waterfall experience and what they would experience on an Agile project.
We began with the similarities.
both projects begin with a vision and supporting requirements
both need funding to deliver the solution
both follow the concept of initiating, planning, execution, monitoring & controlling, closing
both projects need a system wide solution
both have a feedback cycle
both need a team with the skill sets to deliver the solution
We moved onto the differences.
Collaborative, leadership approach and not command and control
Requirements are User Stories which are decomposed to fit an Agile defined time box
Projects are defined in MVP slices and not in one long project time box
Funding in Agile project shifts to product level
Shift in responsibilities: For example,
PO responsibility does include ROI/Scope/cost or budget, risk mgmt via migration (learning spikes and PBIs) and scheduling, dependency mgmt via scheduling, stakeholder mgmt, and quality
Team responsibility does include risk mgmt via migration (learning spikes and PBIs requests of PO) and scheduling (planning w/PO), dependency mgmt via scheduling and ranking suggestions to PO, quality, getting feedback
SCM by encouraging conversation and collaboration, reminding the team about the need to identify risk and dependency needs and assist in ranking conversations, remind the team of quality engineering practices as well retrospective benefits in improving processes and team behavior, encouraging team maturity and migration to T-shaped teams.
Product delivery occurs frequently to facilitate frequent learning and feedback cycle
Lesson Learned occurs at the end of each Agile time box, Agile Principle 12, Continuously Improve
Product via Sprint Review or Demo with everyone
Team behavior and development process among the team members
One team, 7 to 9 people, performs all the work in each Agile time box
Shift to t-shaped team members who can do as many of the sprint task as possible
Follow slightly different software development life cycle (SDLC) process
Requirements (backlog refinement)
design, including UX coding (during the sprint)
system test (during the sprint)
integration test (during the sprint and sometimes after as its own sprint)
performance test (scheduled after as its own sprint)
stress / scaling test (scheduled after as its own sprint)
No project phases
Fixed schedule and cost, via one team, to deliver as many features as possible
Q: … Agile and breakdown
Agile Video link on the four values and twelve which are the basis for the Agile Mindset. There is no life cycle in Agile as it is more a mindset. One of the most popular frameworks is Scrum which does have a life cycle.
The Scrum Framework mentions the Product Backlog as shown on the left side triangle with the three colors boxes. However, it makes no mention of how the product backlog items (PBIs) got there. With that in mind, we discussed what might happen in a product workshop to create them. The stakeholders gathered with the Product Owner and other Scrum Team to discuss their needs. Problems, opportunities, product value stream are shared and discussed. The PO combines market and product information to draft a product vision. From the vision the PO and team begin to create the blue color epics (that is a large request). They can size all the epics or decompose each epic into features to get a more accurate sizing. Once completed MVPs can be discussed and schedules based on MVP goals. In summary, a vision is drafted and PBI are identified which get refined on a weekly schedule. Now a time box planning event can occur.
On the lower right is the potential shippable production increment. It is called potential shippable since it has passed each user story acceptance criteria and time box Definition of Done so it is ready to be installed and activated, but It is also potential shippable since it can simply be moved to the next environment for testing, integration, or staged for production install. In summary, the team produced a product increment for the users to use.
There is a forum entry that summarizes previous conversation on the Introduction to Scrum.
Q: What do I use for my various project types?
New product development – Scrum or Scaled Scrum framework*
Enhancements to existing product – Scrum or Scaled Scrum framework*
Off the shelf customization and installation – Kanban
Operations or ticket management process – Kanban
* I need it all by this date without scope flexibility is not an ideal Agile project. Agile projects require a flexible scope with fixed scheduled and cost for team(s).
Q; What about government projects?
Agile methods have been favored in business for years to deliver customer-centric outcomes. More recently, governments have begun to realize that they can serve citizens more effectively by adopting agile and increasing transparency and collaboration. Therefore, following the guidance of your government, look to start with Agile Mindset to determine the best Agile adoption strategy. Enhance migration to Agile concepts using Agile terms, such as user stories. As the first team mention, to ensure communicate in a timely manner among the team, they meet on a daily bases to discuss the work on the board and address any blocked tasks. Remember Agile Principle, 12, Continuously Improve. Continuously improve Agile adoption at both the project level and organization level.
Q: What about Construction?
Similar to government. There are many things that happen in construction which requirements are unknown and requires pivoting as necessary. Business plans, architecture diagrams, blue prints, permits, and a few other things that are not predictive, repeated tasks. However, there could be construction execution task which are predictive, repeated tasks as per the construction science. Understand how to incorporate both to manage the work.
Q: I was asked a budgeting question during a Scrum Master interview.
As mentioned previously, not all companies have made the full transition to Agile. They may have roles and responsibilities carried forward. This means Scrum Master may need to create budgets and address budget variances until the transformation address the roles and responsibilities.
Q: An introduction / overview, best way to keep teams connected and interested.
We discussed the creative ways team are bonding remotely.
Remote Happy Hour with drinks include! (BYO)
Remote Pot Luck! (everyone cooks a recipe)
Remote Lunch! (I see take-out opportunity)
Remote game night (there is a show in the states that plays game night games)
Guess who riddle?
etc. (many remote team building exercises on the internet.
We also reminded everyone to survey the group to understand what they like, dislike, or new ideas to try.
Q: Mention the roadmap of Agile Certifications that companies are looking for now
Q: Mention Agile Certifications
Q: plan to get certification in the future
The most frequent certification in job posting are those from Scrum Alliance, Scrum Org, and Lean Kanban / Kanban University for team bases instructions,
Scrum Alliance (Certified Scrum Master/Certified Scrum Product Owner/Certified Scrum Developer)
Scrum.org (Professional Scrum Master/Professional Scrum Product Owner/Professional Scrum Developer)
Lean Kanban / Kanban University (Kanban)
There also is a lessor requested one from PMI (PMI-ACP). For those requiring instruction for multiple team, there are a few scaling certifications, such as SAFe, LeSS, and Scaling Scrum.
Q: As a total newbie to Agile PM, what is the first certification they should obtain? Foundation and/or Practitioner? (06/13/2020 session copy)
Begin with a role-based classed for beginners, such as Product Owner, Scrum Master, or Dev. Team as Art suggested a couple of weeks back in his session. There are offerings from the Scrum Alliance and Scrum Organization which cover all the Scrum Roles.
In 2001 Scrum Alliance began its support of the agile movement as a member-driven nonprofit certifying body in the agile space. As a trade associated, we were founded and funded by community for the community- a privilege we take seriously as we continue to nurture the agile movement by providing education, advocacy, research, community and connection.
Ken Schwaber, the co-creator of Scrum, founded Scrum.org in 2009 as a global organization, dedicating himself to improving the profession of software delivery by reducing the gaps so the work and work products are dependable. Ken’s org provides instructions for the three roles identified in the Scrum Guide.
PMI group does offer an end-to-end Agile certification which has more of an Agile Mindset and Agile Mindset practices. This certification covers Agile, Kanban, XP, Scrum values, principles, practices, and development concepts. It is, however, not the most popular or sought-after certification when compared to Scrum Alliance, Scrum Org, SAFe, or LeSS certifications.
Next you can take an advance class for your role. From there you can consider scaling classes for Scrum, SAFe, or LeSS based on your company or career direction. SAFe also provides foundation education for the roles as well.
Q: Interest is gaining knowledge about the subject
There are a few things to do. Take advantage of meetup as you did today. Look at the upcoming reading list to expand your knowledge. Use the training list to schedule a class from Scrum Alliance, Lean Kanban / Kanban University (Kanban), and SAFe.