Agile Chicago Style Podcast

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Syndication

This is just a short video with some tips on becoming an Agile Coach.  This is definitely NOT a comprehensive guide to becoming an Agile Coach.  

When asked by Anthony Mersino (Vitality Chicago founder) to provide a few short tips for aspiring Agile Coaches, this is what I came up with.

 

Enjoy :)

Direct download: AgileChicagoStyle_Ep28_AgileCoachTips.mp4
Category:Agility -- posted at: 10:45am EDT

A great friend of the show, Jim Sammons of Loop Agility, joins us to talk about dysfunctions we've seen in immature teams.  In between Rick telling long-winded stories, we discuss coaching approaches, how we inspire change, letting teams solve their own problems, empowerement and dis-empowerment.  We discuss estimation, coaching at the team level - my favorite!  We share some stories about customers suffering because of internal beuracracy.  I relate experiences where timing is everything - getting coaches involved at the right time can make all the difference in your Agility efforts.

Conferences in and around Chicago
Agile Professional Learning Network - Chicago Chapter Conference - June 13th, 2019

 

Direct download: AgileChicagoStyle_Ep27_DysfunctionsInImmatureTeamsWithJimSammons.mp3
Category:Culture -- posted at: 11:15am EDT

Stacey Louie, from Hyperdrive, joins the show to talk about the most recent addition to the Agile Camp series of local Agile conferences that Hyperdrive organizes.

 

Since the beginning of the Agile Camp series of conferences, Stacey has compiled a short/concise list of tips for new speakers, and he shares those tips with our listeners.

Direct download: AgileChicagoStyle_Ep26_AgileConferencesWithStaceyLouie.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 8:16am EDT

Erin Perry joined the show to to talk about the most recent experiment in the Expert Engineering program at JP Morgan Chase.  They allow people to self-form into teams that work together to collaboratively solve problems, over a period of 9 months.  Since the beginning of the program, they have applied for approximately 6 patents.  We also talked about several other topics that you may be interested in.

You can find more about Erin at http://bit.ly/erinperry

Direct download: AgileChicagoStyle_Ep24_SelfFormingTeamsWithErinPerry.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 12:06pm EDT

Mike Marchi returns to the show with Jeff Singleton.  Both are board members of the Agile Professional Learning Network - Chicago Chapter.

We talk about a recent discussion at the APLN meetup, how the Agile Community sustains itself.  We also talk about how internal organizations may sabotage their own efforts to create sustainable communities.

Also, the APLN is hosting their 3rd Annual Conference on May 16th, 2019.  They are still accepting speaker proposals.  Checkout their website for more info.


Maria Matarelli (Woman-of-all-trades) and I talk about some visualization techniques we've used in the classroom.  Both of us discovered Neuland markers at different times, and put off learning how to use them to their full potential.  Using Bikablo examples and techniques, we've learned that art will engage the learner much more readily.

 

In the second half of the episode, Maria and I tackle some Coaching questions we get quite often:

  • The Team is just not estimating right
  • We can't POSSIBLY get anything done in a 2-week timebox!
  • There are a ton of Process Cops already, why do we need a ScrumMaster too?

HyperDrive's Agile Camp - Chicago: May 6th, 2019

Agile Professional Learning Network (APLN) Chicago Chapter's 3rd Annual Conference: May 9th, 2019

AgileCon - Indianapolis: May 10th, 2019

Big Apple Scrum Day: May 10th, 2019

 

Upcoming Chicago Classes

Certified Agile Leadership 1 (CAL1) March 18-19th, 2019, by Michael Sahota (Chicago Loop)

Certified ScrumMaster (CSM) March 25-26, by Rick Waters (Chicago Loop)

Scrum@Scale March 27-28th, 2019, by Brian Levy (Chicago Loop)

Direct download: AgileChicagoStyle_Ep22_VisualizationAndCollaborationWithMariaMatarelli.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:23pm EDT

Paul Madison stops in to chat at the APLN Chicago 2017 Conference, and gets roped into helping produce the rest of the podcasts for the conference.

Before that, though, Paul and I shoot the breeze about the current market temperature on experimentation and how to handle violations of Team Working Agreements.

Direct download: AgileChicagoStyle_Ep21_ShortDiscussionWithPaulMadison.mp3
Category:Culture -- posted at: 12:00pm EDT

Danielle Pollard stops to chat before going on stage at the APLN Chicago May 2017 Conference. Danielle explains about The Trust Factor and the Three Conditions for Collaboration. During the presentation she shared her High Performance Hierarchy of Needs.

For more on The Trust Factor, please check out her soon-to-be-published book The Trust Factor: 3 Keys to Unlocking the Power of Trust to Build the Perfect Agile Team.

Direct download: AgileChicagoStyle_Ep120_TheTrustFactorWithDaniellePollard.mp3
Category:Trust -- posted at: 11:58am EDT

At the Agile Professional Learning Network - Chicago Chapter's 2017 conference, Paul Madison and I had the opportunity to talk with Ahmed Avais about the Agile Fluency Project. Ahmed had almost literally just finished his presentation on the Agile Fluency Model when Paul sat him down and asked him about it.

Ahmed told Paul about the 4 zones of Fluency

  1. Focus on Value

  2. Deliver Value

  3. Optimize Value

  4. Optimize for Systems

The Agile Fluency is different than Maturity Models in that one team cannot be compared to another (therefor weaponizing the model)

Ahmed also explains Fluency through the Tarzan example. Tarzan matured relative to his environment - swinging on vines hanging from trees, etc. But, his language fluency never quite developed, and his vocabulary very limited - “Me Tarzan. You Jane.” With a larger vocabulary and more practice at speaking to other humans, Tarzan has a chance to communicate with humans. Without the necessary practice he will either continue at his current fluency level, or his fluency could even diminish.

You can catch up with Paul Madison on Twitter at @paulrmadison

You can catch up with Ahmed Avais on Twitter at @ahmedavais

Direct download: AgileChicagoStyle_Ep19_AgileFluencyWithAhmedAvais.mp3
Category:Agile Fluency -- posted at: 2:16pm EDT

At the Agile Professional Learning Network - Chicago Chapter's 2017 conference, I caught up with Dave Saboe and talked with him a bit about ScrumMasters.  Paul Madison joined in and we talked about how personality traits in ScrumMasters evolve over time.

Direct download: AgileChicagoStyle_Ep18_DaveSaboe_5ScrumMastersFromHell.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:57am EDT

At the Agile Professional Learning Network - Chicago Chapter’s first Conference, I caught up with Doc Norton. He spoke about the Host Leadership model and its role-based examples, instead of character based traits of Servant Leadership.

Listen as Doc explains several of the roles that anyone can take on in Host Leadership.

Doc also has a book on Lean Pub right now, Escape Velocity, where he explores more useful metrics than Velocity.

Direct download: AgileChicagoStyle_Ep17_StartsWithAnInvitation.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:42pm EDT

From national elections to ditch digging, Matt and Rick use the recent US Presidential election results, to springboard into some great examples of how national politics and business events can mirror each other. Moreover, how do we, as Agile professionals, react to internal politics.


The idea for this episode was influenced by a tweet that Rick saw the day after the US Presidential election. Rick, being a wartime US veteran and fierce patriot, was immediately infuriated by this tweet, which called the United States the ‘dumbest country on Earth!’ After some time had passed and Rick calmed down, he organized two Agile Politics podcast episodes - this being the second in the series.

Direct download: AgileChicagoStyle_Ep16_AgilePolitics_Part2.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:47am EDT

It’s no shock that there is turmoil in the populace, after the recent US Presidential Election. But, the fact that Agilists are criticizing each other prompted this 2 part discussion. In this first discussion, Rick, Mike and Sandie talk about how certain demographics have historically been under-represented, and targeted unfairly in politics and our national culture - and how the recent election has brought that normally covert part of the culture into the spotlight.

Trying to draw parallels to the Agile world, Rick points out that the corporate world is not immune to the turmoil we’ve see in the nation this month.

Tune in to hear how we stitch it all together…

Direct download: AgileChicagoStyle_Ep15_AgilePolitics_Part1.mp3
Category:Culture -- posted at: 9:33am EDT

If you've been around Chicago long enough, at least in the Agile community, you would know that the company currently know as HERE (formerly Navteq and then Nokia) has a great reputation for being an Agile company.  The truth is, the Agile movement there started as an experiment - as most things in Agile should.

I tag along while Allen Rutzen and Jorgen Hesselberg describe the best example of a true Agile Transformation.

Direct download: 08__Jorgen_and_Allen.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:23am EDT

The ever-controversial Tom Mellor discusses the differences between 'Being Agile' and 'Doing Agile.'  Tom talks quite a bit about Frederic Laloux's organizational paradigms (categorized by a color spectrum), and gets us started down a road that leads to differences in what we are taught about the basic elements of Scrum - or at least what we thought we were taught.

Tom also qualifies and stands by his statement "I think the ScrumMaster was the worst thing ever created in Scrum" by answering the question "If you don't have a ScrumMaster, how do you expect [a new Scrum Team] to become a team that practices Scrum?" -- You have to listen to get his answer :)

Tom mentions these notable people and their works:
Jason Little - Lean Change Management
Frederic Laloux - Reinventing Organizations
Gil Broza - The Human Side of Agile
Dan Mezick
Tom Wujec's - Marshmallow Challenge
Gordon Mackenzie - Orbiting the Giant Hairball
Kimball Fisher - Leading Self-directed Work Teams

Direct download: AgileChicagoStyle_Ep12_BeingAgileWithTomMellor.mp3
Category:Culture -- posted at: 3:46pm EDT

I recently got the most wonderful opportunity to talk with a couple of legends in the Agile Community - Chet Hendrickson and Ron Jeffries!  They're partnering with Brian Levy to bring a 5-Day, dual certification, public CSD class to Chicago for the week of 14-18 March, 2016.

Ron, Chet and Brian discuss many of the XP Practices we grown to love and integrate into our Scrum implementations.  Brian also adds a dash of SAFe to the conversation.

The class, in downtown Chicago, combines a 3-day Certified Scrum Developer (CSD) class and a 2-Day SAFe ScrumXP class.  Class attendees will be awarded the CSD via Scrum Alliance (assuming they already have other pre-requisites covered), and the Scaled Practitioner (SP) via Scaled Agile.

 

Details for the class can be found at these sites

Scrum Alliance 

Rome Agile

Scaled Agile

 

About the Trainers

You can find more about Ron Jeffries here.

You can find more about Chet Hendrickson here.

You can find more about Brian Levy here.

Direct download: CSD_With_Ron_Chet_Brian.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:19am EDT

Just Matt and Rick for this episode.  Matt recalls his experience at a local Agile Meetup - APLN Chicago.  The topic: Culture Eats Agile for Breakfast.

The presenters at this meeting told the story of how they implemented Agile at their organization, but really focused on how they targeted the company culture as something that needed to change along with the development teams.

Direct download: WhatsEatingAgile.mp3
Category:Culture -- posted at: 5:19pm EDT

Introducing Matt Beam!

Matt will become the show's new co-host and technical editor.  Don't worry, you'll still get to hear me inject more than a few um's and stutters :)  But, you will also get Matt's level-headed observations and ideas!

In this episode, we talk about things we are seeing in the Chicago Agile space as far as Agile implementations, attitudes, practices, and how we've adapted to them.

We talk a little about Doc Norton's presentation at Agile Day Chicago 2015.  Doc has a great new take on the Shu - Ha - Ri  maturity model.

Rick gives a little detail about an experiment he's looking into with crossing the CSM training class and young students.  This gives way to a great discussion on training/educating students.

 

Direct download: AgileChicagoStyle_Ep10_Introducing_MattBeam.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:05pm EDT

Join me as I query Jack Walser, of AIM Consulting, on DevOps.  Before Jack spoke to the Agile Professional Learning Network (APLN - Chicago) in June, I didn't have a great idea of what DevOps, in the Agile space, really was.

Jack breaks down what the components of a DevOps environment need to to succeed.

Direct download: AgileChicagoStyle_Ep9_DevOps_JackWalser.mp3
Category:DevOps -- posted at: 4:13pm EDT

In July 2015, Maria Matarelli and Harvey Wheaton presented the results of Scrum Alliance's State of Scrum 2015 survey. The survey returned 4400+ responses that led to some very interesting results.

I was able to get Maria and Aakash Srinivasan (both veterans of this podcast) to discuss some of the more interesting analysis of these results.

Scrum Alliance State of Scrum Report (2015)

Now, about the audio quality of this episode...  I'm sorry, but you will hear some obvious static during this episode (more during the first few minutes).  It turns out that I was using an older microphone that I hadn't recalibrated with my laptop. I've tried to mute it as much as possible through some editing. I will go back to my normal microphone in successive episodes. I'm sorry, and it won't happen again :) -- Rick  

About Maria

Maria Matarelli is a Certified Scrum Trainer (CST) and experienced Agile coach who travels the world helping people discover better ways to work. As president of Formula Ink, Maria travels to consult with businesses and speak at conferences around the world from Vancouver to Morocco, Sweden to New York, Hawaii to Istanbul. Maria is the author of the book Workaholic? and has coauthored three additional books. Maria is passionate about working with people and organizations to inspire agility.

Formula Ink on Twitter1439491371_Facebook 1439491365_YouTube 1439491389_LinkedIn1439491385_Google

 

About Aakash

Aakash Srinivasan is a professional speaker and an Agile trainer and coach who travels to consult Fortune 100 companies, working with enterprise management groups, executive teams and individual project teams on business efficiency, process improvements, organizational change and large scale Agile transformations in addition to providing leadership coaching and other Agile trainings. Aakash also enjoys travelling to speak at industry events and user groups including Agile Indy, IIBA DC, Illinois Regional Agile Users Group, Washington DC Scrum User Group, Agile 2015 and leads training classes and workshops across USA. Aakash Srinivasan on TwitterAakash Srinivasan on LinkedIn

Direct download: AgileChicagoStyle_Ep8_StateOfScrum.mp3
Category:State of Scrum -- posted at: 10:38am EDT

Aakash Srinivasan is an Agile Coach and Trainer, in the Washington DC area, who speaks quite often at Agile events, conferences and Gatherings.  Aakash and I sat down last month and talked about a great range of topics.  

Besides name-dropping (Mike Cohn, Dhaval Panchal, Roger Brown, Catherine Louis, Maria Matarelli, Dave Prior, Mike Vizdos, Arlen Bankston, Tom Mellor), We actually talk about topics like why Agile Coaches are needed when ScrumMasters are intended to be the team coaches; 'Pure Scrum' vs Reality; DAD, Scrum, Scrumban, and Kanban comparisons and where/when they fit; training, co-training, and being CST candidates; Scrum Gatherings and Agile conferences.

Direct download: AgileChicagoStyle_Ep7_AakashSrinivasan.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:27pm EDT

Vivek and Rick discuss many different topics in this conversation ranging from Governance to Training certification, Agile industry diversity to Release Planning, etc.  We breifly touch on our career goals of CST and CSC, and where we are at in our journeys.

Direct download: AgileChicagoStyle_Ep6_VivekAngiras.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:05pm EDT

Recently, I had a wonderful time talking with Angela Johnson about modifications to Scrum that make us cringe.  Sprint 0 and Story Authors topped the list.  Please give Angela's article Are You Transforming the World of Work, or Confusing It? for more on these subjects.

Angela is also offering a $100 discount to listeners who would like to take her CSM class, in Chicago, on July 9th & 10th - just use discount code AJ_100.

Direct download: Ep5_AgileChicagoStyle_AngelaJohnson.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 1:24pm EDT

In this episode I speak with Dave Sharrock, of Agile 42, about scaling Agile ogs.  

Please excuse the hacked up sound quality.  I didn't realize it while Dave and I were speaking, but I entered into this discussion with preconceived ideas of what scaling Agile orgs meant, and it was well reflected in my part of the discussion.  At times I derailed the conversation, and at others, I slowed Dave down from getting his point across.  I believe I've been able to edit the audio back into a semblance of coherent conversation, almost simply by editing out some large portions of me talking. So, please enjoy Dr. Dave Sharrock speaking about scaling Agile organizations.  It's not necessarily all about making your Agile footprint bigger, ideally it's about making it better (and then bigger later).

Direct download: AgileChicagoStyle_Ep4_DaveSharrock.mp3
Category:Scaling Agile -- posted at: 3:11pm EDT

Mike Marchi, Agilist, and I (re)talk about his experiences in Scrum, XP, and Agile in general.  Mike, VP and co-founder of Agile Professional Learning Network Chicago chapter, runs the gamut of all things Agile - books, Scrum Gatherings, team experiences, motivating teams, etc.  Please listen for some great examples of real-life Scrum success stories, and a few funny stories too.

You can find Mike via...
APLN Chicago and the Meetup Group
Twitter (@MichaelMarki)
MichaelMarchi.com
Mike on LinkedIn

Direct download: Ep3_MikeMarchi.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 12:38am EDT

I sat down with Angela Druckman (CST) last week and discussed a few topics that greatly concern us both.  Angela is a Certified Scrum Trainer, from the Pacific Northwest, who trains in several major markets in the USA, and abroad.  She authored 30 Days to Better Agile, and is currently working on a new book about Agile Coaching.  Her new book will be a companion to an Agile Coaching course that she plans on offering for the first time, this Spring.

Tune in to this episode of the Agile Chicago Style Podcast to hear what Angela calls Stealth Scrum, Progressive Independence, "The Homework", and her arguements and opinions on Prioritized Backlogs vs. Ordered Backlogs, and Methodologies vs. Frameworks.  And listen for one great quote from Angela "Good is the enemy of great."

Direct download: AngelaDruckman.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 1:05pm EDT

Maria Matarelli, president of Formula Ink, Certified Scrum Trainer (CST), and author, talks with me about her experience in a recent CSM class where she brought in Suzanne Oliver, of Heart of a Fighter, to act as a real-life Product Owner of/for her non-profit organization. 

Maria's idea to have the CSM class focus on a real non-IT organization to help them realize their goals, yielded some very interesting results.  Listen to our conversation to learn more.

Mentioned in this episode:

Maria Matarelli, from Formula Ink

Suzanne Oliver, from Heart of a Fighter

Blaine Blanchard, from Camp Kids are Kids Chicago

Jan Mosier, from Lightreach Boy Scouts of America

You can contact Maria Matarelli on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, Facebook, at FormulaInk.com, at MariaMatarelli.com, and check out her book at workaholicbook.com

 

Direct download: Ep1_MariaMatarelli.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:53pm EDT

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