SPECIAL XMAS BONUS: The Joy of Agility, looking at Business Agility with Joshua Kerievsky

As Joshua started to research his book, he discovered many stories of people applying the principles and ideas behind agility to their lives, and their businesses. The Joy Of Agility is a book that collects those stories and explains what agility is really about. And it’s not about Scrum, or any other process framework. 

Joshua starts by telling us a story of a young Richard Branson who, having been left stranded on an airport, came up with an idea to get to his destination while helping other fellow passengers who had also been left stranded. This is a story of a person being resourceful in the face of adversity. Being resourceful is one of those aspects of agility that we often don’t discuss, but is – as Joshua puts it – at the core of Agility.

The art of perfecting your act

Another aspect that agile teams put in practice is what comedian Chris Rock does when developing his act. Chris Rock will show up, unannounced at a local comedy club and, standing on a bar stool with a legal pad in had, starts performing a new act. This act is still in its infancy, and this approach is Chris’ attempt to come up with new material. 

Slowly, and methodically, Chris will develop his new act with the help of the audience at his local comedy club. By exposing his new ideas to a real audience, Chris collects early feedback, and therefore tests his work to exhaustion. 

Agile teams also do this with the products or services they develop. This act of collecting early, and repeated feedback makes Chris Rock as Agile as the teams we work with. 

In this segment, we talk about the book Little Bets: How Breakthrough Ideas Emerge from Small Discoveries, by Peter Sims.

The inspiration for Agile comes from unexpected places

When Joshua started his own business (Industrial Logic), he looked for inspiration where he could find it. At the time, the inspiration to become Agile did not come from fellow programmers only, it came from sales. Joshua describes how the book Selling the Invisible, by Harry Beckwith, helped him understand what Agile would mean for a business owner.

The 6 Mantras of Agile by Joshua Kerievsky

As we start reviewing the book The Joy Of Agility by Joshua Kerievsky, we list and explain some of the 6 Mantras of Agile by Joshu Kerievsky. These are simple ideas, explained in a phrase that helps us remember and understand the principles behind Agile and why it works. 

In this segment, we refer to the Modern Agile movement and its principles, and discuss some of the mantras by Coach John Wooden, a legendary Basketball coach in the USA. 

It’s not all about Scrum and Sprinting

Although Scrum is a popular Agile process framework, and many teams out there use it to try and achieve agility, it’s not all about Scrum and Springing. The last story that Joshua shares with us on this special Christmas Bonus episode, is when he, and his team decided to stop sprinting, and what they learned from that. 

Joshua explains how the aspects of Sprints (story points, planning the whole sprint, etc.), started to detract from the goal of being Agile at the team level, and what they did instead. 

In this segment, we talk about #NoEstimates, and the foundational article for Scrum: The New New Product Development Game by Takeuchi and Nonaka

About Joshua Kerievsky

Joshua founded his company (Industrial Logic) from his studio apartment in NYC in 1996. It began as a lifestyle company, which meant he was able to pursue his craft while helping clients. He gradually grew the company and today they help organizations around the world.

Joshua is also an international speaker and is regularly invited to speak and visit many conferences.

You can link with Joshua Kerievsky on LinkedIn and connect with Joshua Kerievsky on Twitter. 

Here you can find Joshua’s company, Industrial Logic, and their blog.

For more on the Joy of Agility, check out the book’s website


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