On agile projects, different teams can have different definitions of effort when estimating work. It is one reason why velocity can vary greatly on teams whose productivity is similar. It is also why using a story point value of zero can prove helpful in planning. Here are three scenarios when the practice makes sense.
Scrum trainer and coach Maria Matarelli discusses applying agile principles in marketing departments, from creating user stories to inspecting and adapting. The benefits include a deeper understanding of both existing and potential customers, which leads to greater returns on advertising campaigns. [30:30]
Agile and Design Thinking, two leading trends in project management, follow an iterative approach and emphasize the importance of the team. But it is their differences that offer great potential when combined as complementary tools for complex problem-solving, customer interaction and value delivery.
An Agile approach to budgeting recognizes the need for frequent course correction by outcome owners who can respond to the business when they have autonomy. It favors accountability over expenditure tracking; it's using road intersections with roundabouts (cooperation) rather than traffic lights (compliance).
Team innovation can be greatly influenced by conflict (either productive or destructive), experiential diversity, a sense of empowerment, and organizational boundaries. An Agile approach can help, though there are pros and cons to consider. Spotify offers a real-world example of how it works.
Smart organizations will continue to become flatter and leaner, while embracing design thinking, big data and enterprisewide agility, according to a new report that identifies the most important strategy execution trends for 2016.
As an organization transitions to Agile, executives play a key role. And they too must transition, modifying their leadership approaches as well as their operating methods. It takes dedication and work, and even the best may fall into bad habits if not careful.
Scrum Alliance CEO Manny Gonzalez discusses a newly revised mission to guide and inspire individuals, leaders and organizations with “practices, principles and values that create workplaces that are joyful, prosperous and sustainable.” In addition to a new knowledge platform, this year brings a concerted effort to strengthen existing certifications and create a career-long path of professional development, from team members to executives. [12:24]
Leaders in an agile organization serve their teams, not the other way around. They are committed to developing and supporting team members. They listen, trust and get out of the way — always in the name of creating greater value. Here’s how it looks and works in the trenches.
If an estimate isn’t going to change team behavior, it’s probably not worth the bother, says Agile thought leader Mike Cohn. But most of the time we do need estimates, and they need to be created in “safe” environments that accept truth-telling and uncertainty. [19 min.]