There are many tools and approaches we can use to define and understand the system we work within. Victor explains how he uses conversations and Value Stream Mapping in his attempt to understand the system he works within.
About Victor Bonnacci
Vic coaches software teams at Bio-Rad Laboratories using Scrum and XP practices. He’s worked in IT for twenty years; first as a webmaster, programmer, project manager and currently as a scrum master and coach. Vic lives in Southern California where he is very active in the local community, and he hosts the Agile Coffee podcast.
You can link with Victor Bonnacci on LinkedIn, and connect with Victor Bonnacci on Twitter.
Be sure to follow Victor Bonnacci’s podcast: Agile Coffee.
What are the right questions? In this episode we review some of the critical questions that we must ask to begin to understand the system. The questions may seem easy to understand and even simple to ask, but how do we enable the organization and the people in the team to reflect on those questions?
About Ruben Sadoyan
Ruben has played many different roles in his career. Agile Coach, Team Engineer, Scrum Master with IT Project Management and Software Development background are just some of those. He’s also been an Account executive with software/web development roots and business development, experienced in team and client relationship management.
He’s also launched a startup named Internet Company and has more than 15 years experience in IT. He describes himself as Focused on constant improvement and self-education. Result driven, able to lead in a Lean way, identify root causes and gradually improve teams to make results happen.
Systems affect teams’ and individuals’ performance. We need to learn to see the system to be able to manage it. Angel shares with us the tools he uses to understand and measure the system performance in a way that includes all aspects, from concept to cash.
In this episode we mention the book Lean Software Development by Poppendieck et al.
About Angel Medinilla
Ángel Medinilla (Spain, 1973) has 18+ years working experience in the ICT market. In 2007 he started his own Agile Consulting firm. Today, Proyectalis is considered the leading Agile consulting and coaching company in Spain, and one of the most well-known in Europe and Latin America,
He is a regular speaker at Agile conferences all over the world
He is the author of Agile Management (Springer) and “Agile Kaizen: Continuous Improvement Far Beyond Retrospectives’ (Springer). He also contributed to Beyond Agile: Stories of Agile Transformations, (Modus Cooperandi).
In 2015 he co-founded Improvement21, whose goal is to bring the continuous improvement habit to all kind of organizations in order to create better cultures, teams, processes and products.
You can connect with Angel Medinilla on LinkedIn, and contact Angel Medinilla on Twitter.
System thinkers need tools and techniques to help them focus on the system and not get blindsided by the shiny symptoms that cross our attention every single day. Ryan shares some of the tools he uses to help him see the system at play.
About Ryan Ripley
Ryan Ripley loves helping people do great work. He is a servant leader at heart and is passionate about fostering safety and trust in the workplace. Ryan created the Agile for Humans podcast to put the focus back on the individuals and interactions that make agile work.
You can link up with Ryan Ripley on LinkedIn and connect with Ryan Ripley on Twitter.
Ryan also hosts a popular Agile podcast: Agile for Humans. Be sure to check it out!
The systems view of the Scrum Master work is not limited to one system. We work with the teams which are one system, but we also work with the team of teams. How the teams interact and cooperate is a system in itself. Enabling cooperation between Scrum Masters can be a very effective way to work with the larger systems.
Event Storming is a technique that comes from Domain Driven Development. Alberto has adapted that technique to his work as a coach to help organizations identify their own patterns and therefore be able to change them. In this episode we explore how this technique can be used to foster organizational change.
About Alberto Brandolini
Alberto looks at himself as sit at the intersection between the Agile/Lean community and the Domain-Driven Design community. Sometimes, he says, the solution is to write better software, sometimes the solution is to take a big modelling surface and see “the problem” in all its magnificence, sometimes the solution is to have a beer.
You can link up with Alberto Brandolini on LinkedIn, or connect with Alberto Brandolini on Twitter.
When we start working with a team, we don’t actually work with that team. That team is part of a larger system, and we must understand the system before we can help the team. Amitai uses ideas from Theory of Constraints, and mentions The Goal, by Goldratt as a foundational book in his own journey as a Scrum Master. He also shares with us Schmoz’s theory, a critical insight when we work with and within human systems.
Today we play one more Agile in 3 Minutes episode which describes how we can reach freedom in our work. Today’s Agile in 3 minutes episode is episode #12, titled “Free”.
About Amitai Schlair
Amitai is a Software development coach, and legacy code wrestler, non-award-winning musician, award-winning bad poet, and creator of Agile in 3 Minutes, which is a great podcast about what Agile really is about. A must listen for anyone interested in Agile Software Development.
You can link with Amitai Schlair on LinkedIn and connect with Amitai Schlair on Twitter.
Working with large groups is challenging enough, but Alex went further and started hosting retrospectives for a large group of people (several teams). In this episode Alex explains how he hosts and facilitates retrospectives with larger teams than the default 7-+2 people.
About Alex Fürstenau
When he was 12, his father bought him his first computer, a C64. The moment he saw characters appearing on the television was the moment when he knew he would do something with computers. Several years and a computer science study later that “dream” became true.
Alex quickly realized that the customers were not happy with our product. The first approach was to fix more of the requirements but it made things worse. During that time (around 2002) he thought “There has to be a better way” and he found several, among which was Agile.
There are many sources of inspiration that help us understand how to “see” the system. Daniel mentions the Logical Thinking Process by Dettmer, and The Goal by Goldratt as good places to start understanding the system and how to address it. But the real tool we all already use and can have a large impact on our understanding and influence is the Retrospective meeting. Daniel suggest the Circles and Soup Retrospective as a way to help the team understand the system and act on it.
About Daniel Hommel
Daniel is a ScrumMaster and Agile Coach with a strong background in Software Engineering. His first touch point with Agility was starting to use the Extreme Programming practices in 2007. After some years of working more on the technical side in recent years his interest has shifted to facilitation, coaching, guiding continuous improvement and working with people in general. You can connect with Daniel Hommel on Twitter.
When trying to understand the system that affects our performance we can’t stay at the surface level. We need to dig deeper to find the real causes for performance problems. Matthias suggest that we measure our system to find what questions we should ask, and then ask “Why?” to help us understand that system.
About Matthias Seul
Matthias worked 10+ years as software developer and gravitated towards coaching in recent years. He is a tech enthusiast, board gamer, inventor and wild duck. Matthias believes in intrinsic motivation – thus he believes in Agile. He says that “together we can make projects a more fulfilling and successful work environment for all involved”.
You can link up with Matthias Seul on LinkedIn, and reach Matthias Seul on twitter. Matthias is interested in your questions and feedback, and you can reach him via email as well.