The Reluctant Agilist

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About this Blog


Recent Posts

Bob Tarne - Agile and Design Thinking

Project Management for Humans w/ Brett Harned

Agile Coaching: Wisdom from Practitioners

Johanna Rothman at Agile 2017 - Creating Your Successful Agile Project and 1 Day User Stories

Edward Kay - Making Agile work in Digital

Bob Tarne - Agile and Design Thinking

Bob Tarne provides an overview of his upcoming PMI Global Congress presentation "Agile and Design Thinking, the Perfect Pairing for a Successful Project". Bob is a seasoned Project Management Professional whose work focuses primarily on helping organizations refine their approach to Agile. In this interview Bob explain what Design Thinking is and how it fits with Agile. He also talks about the book "How Successful Organizations Implement Change" which he contributed a chapter to. And the book "Project Managers at Work" by Bruce Harpham, which features a chapter all about Bob. During the interview Bob also shares details on the upcoming P2P Conference which will be taking place in Egypt on December 9-10. 

If you are attending the PMI Global Congress and would like to check out Bob's session: 
Agile and Design Thinking, the Perfect Pairing for a Successful Project
Monday, October 30 8:30 AM to 10 AM

The book “How Successful Organizations Implement Change” which was put together by Emad Aziz, is available here:

The book "Project Managers at Work" by Bruce Harpham can be found here:

The P2P Conference is being held on December 9-10 in Cairo, Egypt
(link will be posted soon)

If you'd like to contact Bob directly, here is how to reach him:‪btarne‬


Posted on: October 13, 2017 04:52 PM | Permalink | Comments (3)

Project Management for Humans w/ Brett Harned

In this episode o DrunkenPM Radio, Digital PM Summit co-founder, Brett Harned, talks about his new book “Project Management for Humans”, the upcoming (and 5th annual) Digital PM Summit and the new podcast he’s been working on.


Show Notes

  • 00:08 Interview Starts
  • 00:37 Who is the book for?
  • 02:44 What are the pieces that are missing we teach people how to be project managers?
  • 04:25 The project manager is more than just a box checker. But how technical do they have to be?
  • 08:04 What is Brett’s ideal version of the job of a project manager
  • 11:18 What is the biggest misconception that new PMs have about the job when they first get started?
  • 12:30 What is the thing about the job of being a PM that keeps Brett motivated even on the days that totally suck
  • 15:19 What is the Digital PM Summit and why did they put it together in the first place?
  • 17:52 Why the Bureau of Digital’s events are so focused on community
  • 19:21 Sharing and debating… and why it is different in Digital PM than in traditional PM
  • 21:20 Details on the Digital PM Summit and Brett’s workshop right after the conference
  • 21:44 How to get tickets to the conference after registration closes on September 30th 
  • 22:17 Following the event online if you can’t make it
  • 23:31 Brett’s new podcast Sprints and Milestones (URL to be posted later)
  • 25:04 Getting in touch with Brett directly
  • 25:24 Hacking Agile at the DPM Summit
  • 25:32 Special events happening at the conference
  • 26:30 Interview ends


Brett’s book Project Management for Humans 


For more on the 2017 Digital PM Summit


To contact Brett directly

Posted on: October 03, 2017 01:05 AM | Permalink | Comments (7)

Agile Coaching: Wisdom from Practitioners

In this podcast Michael de la Maza and Dhaval Panchal talk about their new book “Agile Coaching: Wisdom from Practitioners”. Michael and Dhaval are the co-editors of the book which is full of stories, tips, and advice from experienced, Agile coaches and trainers. In addition to talking about the book, Michael and Dhaval also share their own thoughts on topics around coaching and they offer advice for those who are headed down the coaching path.




  • 01:28 Podcast Begins
  • 02:01 Who is the book for
  • 02:26 What misconceptions do clients have
    when an Agile coach walks in the door 
  • 03:52 How do you provide coaching in an organization that is not ready for it
  • 05:04 How do you (as a coach) coach yourself when you are trying to work with
    individuals that do not want your help
  • 07:12 Some tips for getting started with a coaching engagement
  • 10:27 What does it take to become an Agile coach
  • 13:17 What is the job of an Agile coach
  • 13:53 When the client wants to pay large sums for you to MAKE them agile
  • 19:06 When will we evolve past waterfall?
  • 23:41 Do you have to be an expert in Agile to be a good coach? What do you need to do before you can be qualified to be a coach?
  • 29:01 Are there people who should not be coaches?
  • 32:05 Getting in touch with Michael and Dhaval


Agile Coaching:  Wisdom From Practitioners



Michael Email:

Michael Twitter:





Posted on: September 29, 2017 03:40 PM | Permalink | Comments (5)

Johanna Rothman at Agile 2017 - Creating Your Successful Agile Project and 1 Day User Stories

In this Agile 2017 interview Johanna Rothman talks with Dave about her new book “Create Your Successful Agile Project Collaborate, Measure, Estimate and Deliver” and how teams that are struggling to make Scrum work may want to adopt an approach that focuses on continuous flow in order to deliver value for their customers with greater frequency.

The interview includes a conversation about working with User Stories that are sized to only take the team a single day to complete and how this may help teams that are struggling with estimation. Dave and Johanna’s also discuss her approach to writing (she averages about 1 book a year in addition to posting to her blog every few days) involves writing for just 15 minutes a day.


Posted on: September 26, 2017 01:03 AM | Permalink | Comments (6)

Edward Kay - Making Agile work in Digital

Edward Kay, the Founder of Tall Projects, has been managing software and digital projects for over 14 years. A few months ago Edward posted an article on The Digital Project Manager called “Agency Agile: 10 Agile Methods for Agencies”. In this interview, Edward and I discuss his article, some of the key things you need to do in order to get agile to work in digital, and why Scrum may be the one thing that just won’t work in an agency model.


Show Notes

  • 04:04 - Interview Begins
  • 04:48 - Background on Edward and Tall Projects
  • 05:55 - How Edward got started doing agile
  • 06:31 - How Edward’s clients develop a desire to try Agile
  • 09:11 - Are the clients who want to “Go Agile” aware of what that will require and willing to take the steps needed to implement the change?
  • 11:25 - Where in the organization is agile getting started?
  • 12:17 - Why the clients bring Edward in
  • 13:34 - There is no one true way
  • 14:50 - Critical challenges facing Digital Agencies trying to adopt Agile
  • 16:32 - Understanding how to look at work across the portfolio
  • 17:32 - Different ways of measuring work in agencies that are using Agile
  • 20:07 - “Why don’t we just smoke crack at work?”
  • 23:52  - Tracking Happiness
  • 25:10 -  Quantifying value and limiting WIP
  • 28:26 - What is the client actually paying you for?
  • 30:50  - Determining value at the project deliverable level
  • 32:40 - Having a conversation about limiting WIP
  • 35:38 - Getting the client to trust the practices agile team’s employ
  • 36:16  - Multitasking is bad and doesn’t work… but it is still expected
  • 37:45 - What Agile practices just do not work in an Agency model
  • 38:49 - “The on system that is not well suited for Digital Agencies in Scrum”
  • 41:15 - Kanban as an alternative for Digital Agencies
  • 42:10 - What Agile tool/technique is the key to making it work in an Agency model?
  • 43:17 - What is the piece that is missing when trying to make Agile fit in an Agency model?
  • 44:18 - How to get in touch with Edward

Contacting Edward

Website -
Twitter: or
Edward’s article on The Digital Project Manager: Agency Agile: 10 Agile Methods For Agencies 

CSM Training and the 2017 Digital PM Summit

For information on the Certified Scrum Master class being held right before the 2017 Digital PM Summit, click here. Special Discounts are available for conference attendees. Contact for more information.

For information on the 2017 Digital PM Summitclick here.

Posted on: September 13, 2017 01:26 PM | Permalink | Comments (7)

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- Jackie Gleason