Category Archives: Introduction to Agile

Why Stretched Teams do “Scrumban”

15842087_sA few years ago Corey Ladas wrote an article about an Agile approach he called “Scrumban”. As the name suggests, this is a variant of Scrum with certain Lean-Kanban characteristics. What he proposed was a graduation of Scrum teams to leaner and more pull-based ways of working than Scrum itself allows.

Whereas Scrum will “batch” work up into Sprint Backlogs and potentially releasable increments, a leaner Scrumban approach will seek to minimize the batching of work as far as possible. Each work item will be processed in response to a clear signal for demand, and not because it has been planned into a Sprint backlog. In strictly Lean terms, holding on to such inventory is a form of waste.

What Corey proposed was the gradual facilitation of leaner practices in Scrum. He sought “…to incrementally enhance Scrum with more and more pull-like features until all that remains of the original process is vestigial scaffolding”. For example, he argued that “if your iteration backlog contains 20 work items, then that’s still about 19 more than it needs to be in a pull system”.

The result was an agile approach which makes a Leaner way of working an end in itself. Since then though, Scrum-Kanban hybrids have taken off in ways that were perhaps not entirely foreseeable at the time when Scrumban was floated.

An Introduction to Continuous Integration

jdowdleOne of the great Agile ‘promises’ is the ability to “satisfy the customer through early and continuous delivery of valuable software.”

But what does it really take to achieve this end goal?

In this video, ‘The Continuous Deliverist’ and AtTask Inc Director of Development Jesse Dowdle shares some continuous integration insights, including…

7 Agile Myths That Could Cost You Your Job & Reputation

“The truth is incontrovertible. Malice may attack it, ignorance may deride it, but in the end, there it is. “

Winston Churchill

The famous writer Mark Twain once said, “It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you into trouble. It’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so.”

In other words, what we think we know can sometimes keep us from knowing what we need to know.

Let me demonstrate this by asking you a simple question:

What animal is king of the jungle?

Everyone knows the correct answer is “Lion”, right?

But there’s a fundamental flaw with this answer.

Do you know what it is?

The fundamental flaw is . . .

Lions don’t live in the jungle.

They never have.

Their natural habitat is, and has always been, the savannah and grasslands. And although they might occasionally venture into the bush or forest, most lions have never seen a jungle, let alone been in one.

That’s an example of how what we think we know can prevent us from knowing what we need to know.

So before we take a look at the techniques and strategies that will give you more power & influence in your organisation and greater control over your career, let’s start by first dispelling 7 common Agile myths that could cost you your job and reputation.

How Spotify Makes Millions Using This Unique Approach to Agile

Over the weekend, music streaming service Spotify launched a web browser based beta version of it’s popular Windows and Mac apps

And when it is fully live, it could open Spotify up to another big growth boom from a whole new set of users beyond the 15 million early adopters (4 million of which pay) who currently use its mobile and desktop clients.

So what’s the secret to staying lean, mean and ahead of the competition when you’re a fast growing innovative company with rumoured year end revenues in the region of $500 million and ongoing expansion beyond the 17 countries where the service is currently available?

A Great Reason to Disagree with Agile Transition

There’s no denying that agile transition can often be met with resistance. But is it possible that the resulting conflict is actually good for the transitional process?

Most people instinctively avoid conflict, but as Margaret Heffernan shows us, good conflict is central to progress.

In this video, Margaret illustrates (sometimes counterintuitively) how the best partners aren’t echo chambers — and how great teams, relationships and organisations allow people to deeply disagree.

Have a watch and share your thoughts/experience below…