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Daniel Westermayr: Moving Beyond Roadmaps, and Using Data to Drive Decision Making for Agile Product Development

In this episode, Daniel emphasizes the importance of collecting data from day one in product development. He discusses how data can help assess the capability of the system in place and create forecasts to assess delivery dates. He mentions the NoEstimates movement and suggests counting the product backlog items that can be finalized in one sprint as a useful metric. Daniel also provides tips for helping teams accept the data, and continuously updating forecasts. He emphasizes the need to work in hypotheses rather than requirements, as it allows for acceptance that they may be wrong. Finally, he notes that data gives us information on how to act and change over time.

Want to Improve Your Change Management Results? Discover the Lean Change Management Approach Today!

As Scrum Master we work with change continuously! Do you have your own change framework that provides the guidance, and queues you need when working with change? The Lean Change Management framework is a fully defined, lean-startup inspired change framework that can be used as the backbone of any change process! You can buy Lean Change Management the book at Amazon. Also available in French, Spanish, German and Portuguese.

About Daniel Westermayr

Daniel is a Kanban Trainer with a knack for all things Lean and Theory of Constraints. He wants to help teams achieve and measure their continuous improvements.

You can link with Daniel Westermayr on LinkedIn.

Daniel Westermayr: The problem with cluttered backlogs and how to de-clutter them, coaching Product Owners

In this episode, Daniel Westermayr discusses his belief in the importance of the Scrum Master role in helping companies achieve their product goals. He shares his experience of encountering a cluttered backlog with items that were years old and how he cleaned it up, only to face complaints from someone in support. Daniel emphasizes the need for Scrum Masters to clarify why a large backlog is a problem, and why the company wants to keep all items. He also advises that Scrum Masters should understand what they stand for and constantly question why certain practices are being implemented. Finally, he suggests that, in order to avoid fears of losing important information, the older requirements can be stored in a safe location. Daniel also mentions an article on how to declutter product backlogs.

The inspiring story of how a failing hospital turned things around with Agile and Lean

Recovering from failure, or difficult moments is a critical skill for Scrum Masters. Not only because of us, but also because the teams, and stakeholders we work with will also face these moments! We need inspiring stories to help them, and ourselves! The Bungsu Story, is an inspiring story by Marcus Hammarberg which shows how a Coach can help organizations recover even from the most disastrous situations! Learn how Marcus helped The Bungsu, a hospital in Indonesia, recover from near-bankruptcy, twice! Using Lean and Agile methods to rebuild an organization and a team! An inspiring story you need to know about! Buy the book on Amazon: The Bungsu Story – How Lean and Kanban Saved a Small Hospital in Indonesia. Twice. and Can Help You Reshape Work in Your Company.

 

About Daniel Westermayr

Daniel is a Kanban Trainer with a knack for all things Lean and Theory of Constraints. He wants to help teams achieve and measure their continuous improvements.

You can link with Daniel Westermayr on LinkedIn.

Bram De Block: Working with great Technical Product Owners, and how they use their technical expertise to help the team

The Great Product Owner: Working with great Technical Product Owners, and how they use their technical expertise to help the team

Great Product Owners can have a technical background, and use it to the team’s and their own advantage. Bram notes that the PO’s understanding of the impact of technical debt makes it easier for them to understand the team’s struggles. Leading to productive conversations, and the team being given time to handle technical debt issues.

Bram advises that a great Product Owner should be present and available to the team, sitting down with them during lunch breaks to discuss issues and concerns. He suggests helping the PO develop their own system to keep the product backlog manageable and addresses common counter arguments he gets from PO’s when asking them to limit the size of their backlog. Bram also provides tips on how to have a conversation about the consequences of adding too many things to the backlog and how to help the PO say “no” to stakeholders.

The Bad Product Owner: Working with technical PO’s to address dictatorial behavior and improve team motivation

Sometimes, Product Owners who have a technical background tend to dictate solutions to the team without considering other options. Bram notes that these PO’s are often not open to different or better solutions and even question the team’s progress. He suggests addressing this issue by making it transparent, showing the impact it has on the team, and discussing how team members feel about the collaboration with the PO.
Bram also highlights the impact this behavior has on team motivation and provides tips on how to handle this situation, such as using real situations to help the product owner reflect and encouraging open discussion of team feelings in the retrospective.

Are you having trouble helping the team work well with their Product Owner? We’ve put together a course to help you work on the collaboration team-product owner. You can find it at bit.ly/coachyourpo. 18 modules, 8+ hours of modules with tools and techniques that you can use to help teams and PO’s collaborate.

About Bram De Block

Bram is not an official trainer, consultant nor freelancer. He is just himself, supporting colleagues in applying and growing their own potential and getting stuff done. Bram started as a software developer for 10 years, then grew into a half-time agile coach, and finally, full-time “Global Agile Lead” at Skyline Communications. Something “special” he learned (even if he wishes it wasn’t special): the meaning and impact of “respect”.

You can link with Bram De Block on LinkedIn, or meet Bram face-to-face at this meetup he hosts in Belgium.

Rafał Witaszek: When the Product Owner does not link stories to a specific product, they destroy the ability to deliver value

The Great Product Owner: A truly collaborative approach to the PO work

This PO was able to communicate clearly, but also step back, doing only enough research to provide options for the team to decide on. He helped the team clarify ambiguities and brought them challenges that the team could own and help resolve. It was a true collaborative approach to the PO work!

The Bad Product Owner: When the work is not linked to a specific product, it loses meaning, and destroys the ability to deliver value

This PO was not fully aware or able to communicate the products the team was working on. He did not have a clear picture of the portfolio of different products the team needed to support. This caused serious problems in prioritizing and communicating progress to stakeholders, as the team was not able to understand when they were jeopardizing certain products by working on work that was not related to that product. Rafał started a process to help the team, and the PO to list all of the products they had to support, and started to organize the backlog around the products, not just a list of tasks.

Are you having trouble helping the team work well with their Product Owner? We’ve put together a course to help you work on the collaboration team-product owner. You can find it at bit.ly/coachyourpo. 18 modules, 8+ hours of modules with tools and techniques that you can use to help teams and PO’s collaborate.

About Rafał Witaszek

Rafał believes the best things are done together. As a Scrum Master, his focus is on enabling communication within an organization. As he is also a passionate sailor, he’s learned that we need to adjust our sails to make the best use of the wind. Focus on what we can affect, and leave other things out.

You can link with Rafał Witaszek on LinkedIn.

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Down-to-earth, hard-earned Scrum Masters lessons and the Tips from the Trenches e-book table of contents, delivered by email
Enter e-mail to download a clickable PO Cheat Sheet
This handy Coach Your PO cheat-sheet includes questions to help you define the problem, and links to handy, easy techniques to help you coach your Product Owner
Enter e-mail to download a clickable PO Cheat Sheet
This handy Coach Your PO cheat-sheet includes questions to help you define the problem, and links to handy, easy techniques to help you coach your Product Owner
Enter e-mail to download a checklist to help your PO manage their time
This simple checklist and calendar handout, with a coaching article will help you define the minimum enagement your PO must have with the team
Enter e-mail to download a checklist to help your PO manage their time
This simple checklist and calendar handout, with a coaching article will help you define the minimum enagement your PO must have with the team
Internal Conference
Checklist
Internal Conference
Checklist
Download a detailed How-To to help measure success for your team
Motivate your team with the right metrics, and the right way to visualize and track them. Marcus presents a detailed How-To document based on his experience at The Bungsu Hospital
Download a detailed How-To to help measure success for your team
Read about Visualization and TRANSFORM The way your team works
A moving story of how work at the Bungsu Hospital was transformed by a simple tool that you can use to help your team.
Read about Visualization and TRANSFORM The way your team works
A Quick & Practical Guide to Agile Projects for BI
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