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Organizations and teams today are under pressure to organize in a way that shortens time to deliver, accelerates innovation, lowers development cost, and increases operational efficiency. Since “You get what you organized for”, it’s important to take the time to choose which principles you want to guide your efforts. By using a set of proven Agile Organizational Design Principles, you can increase the odds of becoming faster to learn and quicker to deliver!

In this webinar Kari Kelley guides us through three critical Agile design principles that can help provide a systemic approach for pushing decision-making power into the organization to help increase speed to deliver customer value faster and more accurate.

And the interesting story is: What can we learn from looking at how restaurants are organized and how they function?

PDF of the presentation here:

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One of the conditions of a Team is continuous coaching. This is to enable the team to become high-performing and well functioning. Without putting time and effort into team coaching it is very hard to become high-performing as a team, and most teams need experts to support in the beginning to move beyond friction and into the phase of the structure.

The 5 Stages of a Team

1. Inclusion

The team meets and learns about the work that needs to be done and what’s expected of them. Members avoid disagreement because they fear rejection at this stage, making the leader a central role providing
direction. There is a desire for order, roles, and structure.

The need of the team: All team members understand the purpose of the team and want to be part of it. Team members know and accept each other and feel accepted as a member of the team.

The leaders role: Provide structure. Make sure everyone is included. Initiate open discussions of values & goals.

Common leadership pitfalls: Analysis paralysis / Not daring to make decisions. Thinking the leader need to have all answers.


2. Friction

The team starts challenging the defined boundaries, such as process and working agreements and voice differences in individual working styles and behaviors. Team members challenge each other. Some question the team’s goals altogether. Typically, this will be a challenging phase.

The need of the team: Understanding of each other’s behavioral style and intention. Improved ability to resolve disagreement effectively. 

The leaders role: Support, coach & train the team in how to keep an open dialogue. Help solve conflicts. Build trust.

Common leadership pitfalls: Picking on individuals – stay focused on ideas, not personalities. A leader that’s unwilling to compromise. A belief that the team needs conflict to advance from this stage – allow disagreement but don’t foster conflict.


3. Structure

The team has the ability to resolve disagreement and integrates their personal differences. They revisit goals and objectives and redefine structures, working agreements, roles, and processes to support them.

The need of the team: Time to work out structures within the team such as processes, goals, roles, and working agreements. Everyone feels that issues regarding ways of working that are important to them have been discussed.

The leaders role: Act as consultants when needed. Support by removing impediments outside of the team.

Common leadership pitfalls: Not taking the time to make sure everyone’s perspective is represented. Trying to get everyone to conform to the same values. Trying to find the perfect solution.


4. Performing

The team have agreement on goals and objectives and work towards them together. The team is competent in decision making and conflict resolution with minimal or no supervision. The team rapidly gains important knowledge through knowledge sharing – there’s no information hoarding. Relationships and results are equally important.

The need of the team: The team is self-managed and continuously evaluate their own performance.

The leaders role: Share responsibilities with the team. Reward initiative. Coach & facilitate individual development.

Leadership pitfalls: Expecting to not have to further improve and still maintaining high performance.

(more…)
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Are you a well-functioning Agile team?

These questions can give you an idea of what a well-functioning Agile team looks and feels like. If you are a newly formed team you can see the questions as a benchmark for the future and continue to revisit them as a team, as your Agility grows.

These questions can be discussed and answered in combination with the Team Maturity questions.

Why self-evaluation matters

There is a reason teams should evaluate themselves, and not be evaluated. If the team takes responsibility for their own progress and improvement, they also take ownership of evaluating their own performance. If someone else would use their data to compare teams across the organization, or to perhaps set salaries, then it would not be a safe place anymore and people and teams would not dare to show any flaws, and improvement would, therefore, be impossible.

Download and Print the Self Evaluation Sheet (PDF)

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Not many people like being lectured. Not all people like being coached either. But everybody (yes, everybody!) likes games in one form or another. That’s why we’ve created an experienced-based free online game that teaches the basics of an agile way of working.

You can play it yourself or with up to four people, taking the part of a team member in an agile team working on a number of stories in a sprint.

The game introduces:

  • The look and purpose of a scrum board
  • How T-shaping improves your chances of succeeding
  • Why continuous improvements is a good thing in the long run
  • The general structure of a scrum sprint

How to play – the Quick Version

Go to https://tabletopia.com/games/agile-wow-the-game and start playing!

How to play – Extended Version

1. Create an account at tabletopia.com

It’s free and we’ve made an instruction video on how you set it up (because it’s frankly a bit trickier than it should be)

2. Get someone to play with

After creating a “room” you can send an invite code to other players who can join in (they need to create an account as well). Want a video on how to do that? Here you go!

3. Know the rules

Want to know the rules? Then, we’ve got you covered! The rules are available in the game but we made this how-to video just in case:

4. Start playing!

Go to https://tabletopia.com/games/agile-wow-the-game and start playing!

Are you a Team Coach or an Agile Coach?

You can also take the role of a facilitator and play the game to train new agile teams about the basics or let it be the start of a discussion in a more mature team.

After finishing playing, run a retrospective. Follow up the usual “What could have we have done better?” and “What did we do well?” with “How does this compare with real life?” and “Do you work together like this in your teams?” and let the discussions flow.

Playing with people on the same team gets you comparisons to real life (and quite often “why don’t we work more together?”). People from different teams quickly get into comparing ways of working and exchanging ideas. All great stuff, and if you don’t have time to finish the game know that you’ve already won!

In order to create an experienced-based game, we have taken the liberty to simplify some things and we might not follow all the rules of Scrum. But if you are looking for the Scrum Guide you find the 2020 version here.

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I våras blev jag inbjuden att medverka som talare på Agila Örebro. Det var ett väldigt trevligt event med massor av intressanta talare och deltagare från regionen, men också från andra delar av Sverige.

När kunderna kräver bättre digitala tjänster och produkter behöver företagen hitta nya sätt att organisera sig för att snabbare leverera kundnytta. Gör man inte det riskerar man att bli omsprungen av snabbare konkurrenter. För att lyckas med detta krävs medvetenhet hos ledning och ett strategiskt ledningsbeslut. Den här föreläsningen riktar sig till nyfikna ledare som vill möjliggöra kundfokus och innovation.

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We’re so happy to share our Pattern Cards for Successful Agile Change now also in Spanish! Here you can download the 27 pattern cards for free and use them within your organization or with your clients.

Here you can download the Pattern Cards in Spanish for Free (PDF) >

If you like to get inspiration on how to use the cards you can find out more here and also download the the original English version of the pattern cards >

 

Spanish Agile Pattern Cards

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cynefin context cards

Free Download of the cards for printout (high resolution PDF) > 

You can also purchase these decks of cards in our Online Shop >

These cards changes the concept of estimation and help teams work and think as a team to innovate and discover the solution of the product, instead of just delivering it. If you work in Scrum you can use them on your Refinement, or on the Sprint planning. If your’e in a Kanban team you use them when ever you have need of planning.

Background and WHY

Much too often we see organizations where there are many handovers end to end from understanding there is a customer need to actually delivering something to solve it. This situation causes not only long lead times, but it also kills innovation and it often result in delivery of the wrong solution. The reason is that we too often don’t understand the complexity of the problem, and treat it as a simple or complicated problem. To enable a change in thinking around how to solve different problems and also a change in behavior, we created these cards.

We are all as humans eager to move in to the “solution domain” to early, it´s just human, and we´ve all done it. Perhaps because it´s much more fun to ideate. And often that’s also what we get rewarded for. This makes us often solve either the wrong problem, or find the wrong solution – both leaving us without impact. When solving complex problems it is important to stay in the “problem domain” for a bit to learn about the problem, the context and the people who has the problem.

When we work in Agile teams we need to find ways to take in both complex, not yet solved problems, in to the sprint, as well as deliver on those already discovered solutions that we know will work. Often we call this continuously discovery & delivery, -something many Agile teams struggle with since the ordinary scrum way to do estimates in story points does not help teams stay in the problem domain, but often forces them to move in to the solution domain premature. Asking teams to estimate solutions creates a fixed mindset opposed to a growth mindset which is what we need to be able to build an innovating learning culture, otherwise the problem will show when the team try to build it, making it take longer to deliver, or when the customer uses the solution making them call customer service complaining, or leaving the service.

These cards are a tool to enable that growth mindset and open up dialogues between the people and competences needed to understand the problems and build the solution needed to create business and customer value. (more…)

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Équipes multidisciplinaires Agile

x-funktional teamLes équipes multidisciplinaires sont des équipes avec toutes les expertises néecessaires pour créer un produit et le mettre en production. Cependant, il ne suffit pas de rassembler un groupe de personnes différentes et de s’attendre à ce qu’elles agissent en équipe. Ce jeu essaie de montrer les conséquences du maintien d’une expertise et d’un rôle unique par les membres d’une équipe.

X-team silos game french

Instructions Préparatifs

Vous avez besoin de 48 morceaux de lego par jeu et par équipe, et ils doivent être dans 4 couleurs différentes, jaune, blanc, rouge et bleu. (more…)

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The amazing Guillaume Dutey-Harispe has once again translated our work to French 😀 We´re so humble that we have friends like Guillaume, and so proud to be able to share our Pattern Cards free to download and use also in French as well with you! Enjoy!

Download the French Pattern Cards in High Resolution (PDF) for printout here >

If you like to get inspiration on how to use the cards you can find out more here and also download the the original English version of the pattern cards >

Thank you Guillaume Dutey-Harispe, gduteyharispe@aneo.fr

 

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I was very happy to get invited to Agile Days Istanbul as a speaker by my friend Ilyas Varol. The topic for the conference was Agile Leadership, and 500 curious participants joined.

Agile Days Istanbul Presentation

Ilyas har previously translated my Agile in a Nutshell to Turkish, and he told me he has during his trainings and talks here in Turkey probably been giving away hundreds of copies of the poster, making me a little bit famous i the Turkish Agile community… and making me just a little bit nervous 🙂

It was a great day with lots of interesting speakers and topics, as well as many great discussions. The conference had 3 tracks with both International speakers like  Tom Gilb, Joanne Perold and my self, and Turkish speakers. Turkcell with tales from their scaling adventure, with Chian Yildiz, Digital disruption & Leadership, with Gizem Moral Kunter and Assess your Leadership Mindset with Ilker Demirel to mention a few.

Information about the presentation

Organizations today need to find new ways to organize to faster deliver customer and business value. In this presentation I share with you some of the symptoms you might see if your’e not organized for complexity and without a customer focus, why this happens and what you can do about it.

Discover how you can get organized around customer value instead of in silos and around systems and how much more value and happiness you will get from this.

I also share some examples of activities and results from the clients we at Dandy People have been coaching the past years to do this transformation.

Target group: Curious Leaders, Management and Change Makers

This presentation in English was originally held at Agile Days Istanbul, April 2018, but its based on a Swedish presentation first presented at Sundsvall 42 in September 2017.

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Many times while coaching people we want to be able to quickly give people new perspectives, food for thought and bring people together around shared understandings and common goals. Thats why we created these pattern cards for successful Agile transformation, to enable engaging discussions. Please feel free to download and use them you too if you feel they can help you to create valuable dialogues too.

You can also purchase these decks of cards in our Online Shop >

EDIT: Updated Pattern Cards (May 8) with 5 additional patterns

– Stable Teams
– Reflection
– T-shaped People
– Distributed Decision Making
– Impediments Removal

Free Download of the Pattern Cards For Successful Agile Change (PDF) >

The different cards are visualizing patterns that we have seen to be the most important to succeed with Agile transformation and scaling Agile organizations.

patterns for successful Agile change

Suggestion of how to use the pattern cards

You can probably use them in many different ways. Here is how we have used them with leadership teams most of the times.

Group people in smaller groups, 3-5 people. Give them a time box of 10-15 min to prioritize the 5 cards they find would bring the most value to focus on in the next period (3 – 6 months perhaps). (more…)

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