The Reluctant Agilist

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About this Blog


Recent Posts

What to do when your team won't to talk In Retrospectives w/ Adam Weisbart

Using Improv to Improve Your Listening Skills w/ Jessie Shternshus

Melissa Watts - Tips for ScrumMasters

Chris Bailey - Hyperfocus and Optimizing Your Productivity

Scott Ambler on PMI's Acquisition of Disciplined Agile

Ilker Demirel - The Leadership Gift Program - NASG 2019

At the 2019 North American Global Scrum Gathering, I had a chance to sit down with Ilker Demirel to talk about his involvement with The Leadership Gift Program and how it has transformed his life and his work helping individuals, teams, and organizations become “free, powerful, and at choice” and move from a mindset of scarcity to a mindset of abundance.

Ilker is a Certified Leadership Gift Coach and Certified Scrum Trainer. The Leadership Gift Program and the Responsibility Process were created by Christopher Avery. I’ve interviewed Christopher previously about his work and The Leadership Gift Program (click here).  I was excited to get the chance to spend time with Ilker because he is someone who has been working with the Responsibility Process for many years. The impact that it has had on him and his ability to communicate and interact with others is inspiring.

Links from the podcast

To Contact Ilker Demirel

Posted on: June 25, 2019 11:21 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Jason Tanner Is On A Mission To Fix Your Daily Scrum!

The Daily Scrum is one of the simplest and most critical elements of Scrum. Unfortunately, for many, this event becomes a traditional status meeting that delivers little value. If your Development Team has lost its way with their Daily Scrum, this podcast is for you. Jason Tanner is the CEO and Co-Founder of Applied Frameworks, as well as a Certified Scrum Trainer and a Path to CSP Educator. During the 2019 North America Global Scrum Gathering in Austin, he was kind enough to block out some time to talk through the different reasons he sees teams lose their way with the Daily Scrum and what can be done about it. 

Contacting Jason

Applied Frameworks:
CSP Fast Pass:

Posted on: June 18, 2019 03:26 PM | Permalink | Comments (3)

Carol McEwan and Scrum at Scale at NAGC 2019

At the 2019 North America Global Scrum Gathering, I had the chance to sit down with Carol McEwan, CEO and Chief Product Owner of Scrum at Scale, to talk about her new role and what has happened since the Scrum Alliance and Scrum Inc. announced Scrum at Scale as a joint venture at last year’s Gathering. 

Carol took on the role of CEO/CPO of Scrum at Scale in March, but she previously served as the Managing Director of the Scrum Alliance. She has had a deep impact in the Scrum Community and in this interview you’ll get to hear about the new things she’s been working on, as well as how Scrum at Scale is helping organizations like Saab redefine their operational model and reduce decision latency using Scrum from top to bottom, and how this is enabling business agility across the entire enterprise. 

To learn more about Scrum at Scale:

If you’d like to get in touch with Carol to follow up, here is how you can reach her:

Posted on: June 11, 2019 11:27 PM | Permalink | Comments (3)

Rebuilding Trust in Your Organization - Charlotte DiBartolomeo - The Red Kite Project

“The problem with fear is that it kills creativity”

Charlotte DiBartolomeo is the CEO and Founder of The Red Kite Project, an organization that provides resiliency training in high pressure industries. This work involves coaching, consulting, and training centered around how to dismantle dehumanizing systems, rebuild trusting relationships, and cope with burnout. As an example of this, The Red Kite Project worked with public transit bus drivers in Philadelphia who were trained in ways to cope with conflict, how to recognize and de-escalate verbal attacks, and how to develop coping skills to help them at work and at home. 

In this interview, Charlotte, who has a background in conflict mediation, crisis counseling, and human services, explains why trust is an endangered species and how we can go about rebuilding it and re-humanizing people. 

“The problem with fear is that it kills creativity”

If you work in an organization where trust is scarce, failure is not an option, and  “resources” are expected to meet demands that regularly require that they sacrifice the time they need to take care of themselves and their families, or in an organization that is experiencing system-wide burnout due to constant change, you’ll find ideas in here to help you understand the toll this is taking and steps you can take to rebuild trust. During the interview, Charlotte and Dave discuss how to transform your organization into a place that can celebrate teams and the value humans can deliver when we give them a safe space to thrive. 


To contact Charlotte DiBartolomeo and The Red Kite Project
Phone: (215) 459-3518


Posted on: June 10, 2019 11:48 PM | Permalink | Comments (3)

Scrum Labs - Howard Sublett at the 2019 NAGS

Recorded live at the 2019 North American Global Scrum Gathering, this episode of The Reluctant Agilist features a conversation with Scrum Alliance Chief Product Owner Howard Sublett. During the course of the interview, Dave and Howard discuss Dan Pink’s opening keynote at the Scrum Gathering; the Scrum Alliance Labs and volunteer work that have been done to create a free library of material aimed at helping to develop a more mature and more highly-skilled agile coaching community; an update on how things are going with the recent shift in Scrum Alliance leadership moving to a Chief Scrum Master and Chief Scrum Product Owner instead of a traditional leadership model; and the video series Unscripted, which features updates from Howard and Melissa Boggs, the Scrum Alliance Chief Scrum Master. 

Note from Dave: at 15:38, something really important in this interview happens. Howard refers to a question he asked Melissa during the first episode of Unscripted. The question was “How are WE doing as a LEADER?” It is a subtle thing, but language is a virus and words matter… “WE” is plural, while “LEADER” is singular. The way the question is encoded demonstrates a very subtle, but important aspect of an Agile mindset. Howard and Melissa have complimentary but different roles in the Scrum Alliance and the two of them together function as a single Leader.

Failure Bow: I got The Wonder Twins (Zan and Jana) a little confused during the interview. I have brought shame upon my family and apologize to any comic geeks who were listening. If you are not clear on who the Wonder Twins are:

Links from the Podcast

Contacting Howard Sublett


Posted on: May 29, 2019 08:12 AM | Permalink | Comments (4)

"Yesterday I dared to struggle. Today I dare to win."

- Bernadette Devlin