Selling Agile – How to get Buy-In from Management? – Q&A with Jeff Campbell

Jeff is the author of Actionable Agile tools (available on Amazon, and direct from the author at bit.ly/aatbook). He joins us on this series of Q&A shows to answer questions you’ve submitted. You can submit your questions via our survey (short, about 2 min to fill-in) or by tweeting us @scrumpodcast with #agilejeff.

In this episode, we talk about getting management to be involved and buy-in to the agile transformation.

How do you get management to buy-in to the Agile transformation

You, as I have for sure, have seen companies where Agile starts with a dictate from management, it is pushed top-down by management. They say: We all need to get more agile!

But when I go it and ask, why do you want Agile? They usually lack the business reasons. It’s all a bit fuzzy.

Even if the team is on-board, management is not. Management change is outside of the span of control of the team, and then their resistance keeps coming back in the retrospectives but end up being considered not actionable and thus simply create frustration

How have you been able to break through that gate of IT and start talking about the wider Agile adoption?

Resources and tools

During this episode, we refer to the book Lean Change Management by Jason Little.

About Jeff Campbell

Jeff Campbell is the author of Actionable Agile Tools, a book with practical tools and practices to help you amplify your impact as a coach and Scrum Master

Jeff is an Agile Coach who considers the discovery of Agile and Lean to be one of the most defining moments of his life and considers helping others to improve their working life not to simply be a job, but a social responsibility. As an Agile Coach, he has worked with driving Agile transformations in organizations both small and large.

Jeff is also involved in the Agile community and is one of the founding members of Gothenburg Sweden’s largest agile community at 1500+ members www.scrumbeers.com, and he also organizes the yearly conference www.brewingagile.org.

You can link with Jeff Campbell on LinkedIn and connect with Jeff Campbell on Twitter.

BONUS: Ben Aston on Project Management lessons that Scrum Masters can use

Ben is a project manager with experience in developing digital services and products for worldwide clients. He’s learned some very important lessons and shares some of his key insights with you in this special episode, where we dive deep into the project manager role and the project management world.

Continue reading BONUS: Ben Aston on Project Management lessons that Scrum Masters can use

BONUS: Geoff Watts on what makes a great Scrum Master, the key challenges to Scrum adoption and much more about Agile

There are quite a few books out there about the Scrum Master job. However, the classic that many refer to over and over again here on the podcast is Scrum Mastery by Geoff Watts.

In the description of the publisher writes: “Scrum coach Geoff Watts has identified patterns that separate a good Scrum Master from a great one”.

As a podcast for Scrum Masters, we wanted to have Geoff on, to share the key insights in the book, but also what he learned since the book was first published in 2013.

But, before we go into those new lessons learned, let’s quickly review some of the key insights from the book

The key insights from Scrum Mastery, the book

Read on for the detailed show notes and all the links…

Continue reading BONUS: Geoff Watts on what makes a great Scrum Master, the key challenges to Scrum adoption and much more about Agile

BONUS: Mirko Kleiner on Agile Procurement a new approach to buying software development

When organizations start with Agile, they typically focus on the work that needs to be done at the team level. In many organizations we have “water-scrum-fall”, a little bit of Scrum squeezed inside two big buns of a plain waterfall.

The reason for that is that organizations don’t change as a whole. Typically Agile adoption starts in Engineering/R&D and slowly spreads throughout the organization. At some point, it bumps against the slow moving, but very powerful finance department. Where are all the financial decisions are made, including how to fund projects, and where Procurement has a key role. How do we change Procurement (buying software development) to fit Agile organizations?

That’s the topic we explore with Mirko Kleiner, a pioneer in the Lean-Agile Procurement movement.

How Lean-Agile Procurement got started

Read on for the detailed show notes and all the links.

Continue reading BONUS: Mirko Kleiner on Agile Procurement a new approach to buying software development

BONUS: Jeff Gothelf on how to redefine the measure of success for software development

When Agile broken into the scene, it was mostly about the techniques to develop releases of the product quickly. However, that was a time when products were released only a few times a year at best. Today products evolve continuously and that changes how product Owners and Product Managers need to interact with the teams. In this episode, we explore some of the key lessons Jeff has learned working with product organizations all over the world. In short: Product Managers also need to adapt to Agile, it’s not just the teams!

Continuous product development is different from what we used to know as product development

Read on for the detailed show notes and all the links.

Continue reading BONUS: Jeff Gothelf on how to redefine the measure of success for software development

BONUS: Jeff Patton shares his view on the Product Owner role, and what Scrum Masters can do to help

In this episode, we explore some of the critical lessons Jeff learned in his own career as a Product Owner. We review the missing aspects in most Product Owner role implementations and discuss the tools that have helped Jeff as a Product Owner first, and later his students.

The first steps of Jeff’s journey as a Product Owner

Read on for the detailed show notes, and all the links

Continue reading BONUS: Jeff Patton shares his view on the Product Owner role, and what Scrum Masters can do to help

BONUS: Patricia Kong and Kurt Bittner introduce Nexus, a framework for scaling Scrum by Scrum.org

For several years, the Agile community has been struggling with the use of Agile practices – developed for small teams – in the large. Large organizations or multi-team efforts are the rule, not the exception in the software world. In this episode, we explore Nexus, a scaling framework developed by Scrum.org to tackle just that: the use of Scrum in larger organizations and multi-team product development efforts.

Read on for the detailed show notes and all the links.

Continue reading BONUS: Patricia Kong and Kurt Bittner introduce Nexus, a framework for scaling Scrum by Scrum.org

BONUS: Dean Leffingwell on scaling Agile and the Scaled Agile Framework, SAFe

scaled agile overviewFor this first Christmas 2018 special we focus on scaling Agile, and specifically how the Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe) can help organizations take Agile and apply it in the large.

There are many systems that require multiple teams to work together. As more and more industries adopt software as a core part of their services and products, we also see many organizations developing many products concurrently, and large engineering organizations that require coordination across tens or hundreds of teams, including non-software teams.

In this episode, we discuss how SAFe can help you take Agile to that type of environments and organizations.

Read on for the detailed show notes, as well as all of the links.

Continue reading BONUS: Dean Leffingwell on scaling Agile and the Scaled Agile Framework, SAFe

BONUS: Richard Kasperowski on on high-performance teams and The Core Protocols

In this episode, we explore The Core Protocols, a set of ideas developed by Jim and Michele McCarthy as they investigated the causes of performance improvement in teams.

During that research, Jim and Michele discovered that high-performance teams did a lot of things in a similar way, and we explore some of those patterns that successful teams take on.

The Core Protocols not only describe the patterns of successful teams, but also act as a “map” of the things we need to consider when helping our teams.

Read on for the detailed break down of the episode…

Continue reading BONUS: Richard Kasperowski on on high-performance teams and The Core Protocols

BONUS: Mary and Tom Poppendieck on Lean Software Development, Business Agility and how autonomous teams enable adaptability

Tom and Mary Poppendieck have authored several books over the years about what needs to change in how we develop software to be able to meet the demands of the market, competition, and the growth in complexity of technology businesses. A recurring pattern they have witnessed is that people keep trying to discover a “silver bullet”. We explore why that is a bad idea and some of the changes in product development that make it an impossible quest.

Read on for the details, and all the links shared during the show.

Continue reading BONUS: Mary and Tom Poppendieck on Lean Software Development, Business Agility and how autonomous teams enable adaptability