How iZettle facilitate refinement to enable a growth mindset in Agile teams with the Cynefin Context Cards

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Andreas Nordlund who is an Agile Coach at the payment provider iZettle came by the Dandy office to buy the Cynefin Context Cards to his team. I was curious and asked if he would like to share how he was planning on using the cards.

This picture is from another company using the cards.

Mia: How come you want to try the Cynefin Context Cards?
Andreas: We are a group of Agile Coaches at iZettle who meet and share learnings and tips. Some of the other coaches have been using the cards and said they were good. I just got back from a training with Dave Snowden in Berlin in how to use the Cynefin Sense-Making Framework and I felt I wanted to try the cards.

Mia: What purpose do you see that the cards will serve?
Andreas: We often talk about the work we do as if we are in the complicated domain, but often realize that we are in the complex domain. I want to help my team to put words on that, to facilitate that discussion in a structured way. Support the team to more easily come to the conclusion experiments are needed when they are in the complex domain.

Mia: How are you planning on using the cards?
Andreas: We will use them during the refinement to facilitate the discussion around the work and how the team should perceive it. Without facilitation, experts can easily take over the discussion. In the complex domain, the experts don’t have that much to offer as in the complicated.

It is so powerful for the team to get a common view on how to handle the problem.

I think the Cynefin Context Cards makes it easier for teams to talk about problems and solutions in a context, it gives you support on how you can act depending on the domain in a great way. With the cards, the team has a shared reference with the Cynefin domains which helps them to come up with that they need to do an experiment, without having to argue about why they can’t come up with the solution right away and just define the story points. 

With the cards, we can more easily facilitate the discussion around the complex domain and see different alternatives. Should we ask for an expert, should we do mob programming, or something else?

All cards included in one deck

Mia: Does the team first need to understand the Cynefin Sense-Making Framework?
Andreas: I’m planning on doing a simple exercise to create a common understanding of the domains, and how we can use the different cards. Then I will build on that and add how we can move between the domains.

Mia: How do you handle the fact that you have a distributed team?
Andreas: I’m planning on sending decks of cards to the team members who are not in Stockholm so that everyone has their own decks and get the same experience from using them. I expect it will work well with video.

Thank you, Andreas, for a nice chat and the best of luck to you and the team!

The Cynefin Context Cards are created by Dandy People to facilitate discussions on how to solve customer problems in teams and enable them to work efficiently in all domains.

Here you can buy your own decks of Cynefin Context Cards >

Here you can read previous posts and learn more about the Cynefin Context Cards and the Cynefin Sense-Making Framework >

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