My Journey to CEC ~ and 10 Tips for Yours!

“Tell me why you think we should consider you for the CST.  I’ve never heard of you, never seen you at any user groups, haven’t met you at any conferences, never seen you speak publicly, and you are making no contributions to the agile community.”  Those words spoken by Devon Morris, CST were critical to my path to become a … Read More

Signal to Noise Ratio / Bottom Lining

  A Few weeks ago while attending a Coaching Agile Teams class I heard one of the instructors (Lyssa Adkins) make a reference in passing to “signal to noise” ratio in reference to our ability to communicate with others.  Her comment intrigued me because I’d never heard that phrase before, so I started to do some investigation. Signal-to-noise ratio (abbreviated SNR or S/N) is a measure … Read More

Agile Jeopardy Retrospective

(This post is by guest blogger, Kenny Barnes.) For our latest retrospective, I created a jeopardy board using JeopardyLabs – Online Jeopardy Template.   I used a mix of Agile related categories (Scrum, Agile), items related to the team [Working Agreements, Sprint (more details below)] and something the team is really passionate about (Star Wars).  It took about an hour and a … Read More

Rubber Duck Productivity

Today, one of our team members taught me about rubber duck productivity. This was an experiment where people found that they were more productive when they kept a rubber duck on their desk. When they encountered a problem they were having trouble solving they would talk to the duck and tell the duck the problem. In the course of explaining … Read More

Coaching ~ It’s more than just asking questions

A common belief is that the difference between coaching and managing is simply asking questions rather than giving orders.  I used to believe this.  Instead of making decisions for my teams and telling them what to do I would ask them questions and get them to derive their own solutions.  I thought that meant I was coaching.  But the more … Read More

Are Your Stories Ready?

This week I was particularly impressed with a method used by a Scrum Master to help his team understand which stories on the backlog were “ready” and which were not.  It’s amazing how such a simple technique can bring the transparency needed to help a team prepare for a successful sprint.  His technique is to use colored stickers as markers … Read More

An elephant and a monkey went for a walk last sprint …

This week I was walking past a conference room where a Scrum Master was preparing for the team’s retrospective.  I had to stop and take a picture because I really loved what I saw.  Here are a few of the things that really impressed me: The team’s improvement plan from the last retrospective is represented. This helps to solidify the value … Read More

Agile 2015 Learning and Highlights

Sunday, as I got on a flight and headed to Washington, DC for Agile Alliance’s Agile 2015 conference, I was looking forward to spending a week with other like-minded people who believe in living the agile values and principles and who are investing in themselves and in others to grow in their craft. I anticipate this conference all year because … Read More

Change Your Questions Change Your World

  Allison Pollard and I will be presenting Change Your Questions, Change Your World at the Agile 2015 in Washington DC in August.  If you haven’t already registered, check it out at: http://agile2015.agilealliance.org

Scrum Mastering – It’s a hard job. But someone has to do it!

This is me.  I’m an agile coach and I love being a scrum master whenever my path allows me to step into that role for a few months in order to start up new teams and develop scrum masters.  I’ve been scrum mastering a few teams for the past couple of months and having the time of my life!  But … Read More