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Begin model for self organization


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  • 1. Self-Organization The Power of Self-Selecting TeamsChris Farrell and Shawn ButtonAgile Tour Toronto 2012
  • 2. Agenda• Introduction• Exercise #1• Self-organization - BEGIN• Self-selecting teams• Exercise #2• Questions
  • 3. Exercise #1
  • 4. Drawing ExerciseAt your table produce a drawing that shows the benefits of a self-organizing team.• Form into groups of 3 or 4• You have 10 minutes• Everyone at the table should draw at least part of the drawing Begin!
  • 5. Drawing Exercise - DebriefVolunteers to explain their drawing.
  • 6. Self-Organization
  • 7. "Self-organization is the process where a structure or pattern appears in a system without a central authority or external element imposing it through planning"- Wikipedia
  • 8. Self-Organizing Systems• Not planned or directed• Spontaneous emergence of order and behaviour• Sum is greater than the parts• Robust, adapting, self-healing• Influenced by initial conditions• Influenced by feedback or changing conditions
  • 9. Agile and Self-Organization"Build projects around motivated individuals. Give them the environment and support they need, and trust them to get the job done."- Agile Manifesto Principles
  • 10. But, are there problems?
  • 11. How to enable self-organization• Setup the initial conditions• Continually tune o Reinforcement o Change conditions to grow self-organization
  • 12. How do you BEGIN?• Boundaries o What the team must do, or must not do• Empowerment o What authority is granted to the team• Goals o The reasons the team exists• Ingredients o The raw materials for success• Nurture o Ongoing feedback and evolution
  • 13. Boundaries
  • 14. BEGIN - Boundaries• Depending on the maturity of the team and the organization, you may not be able to completely empower a team• Explicitly list the things that a team must do, and must not do• You should try to keep the conditions as unrestrictive as possible to increase the level of self-organization
  • 15. Empowerment
  • 16. BEGIN - Empowerment• What authority is granted?• Be explicit about what they are allowed to do• e.g. Self-management o choose own tools o own day-to-day schedule o manage own vacations o clear own impediments• Err on the side of trust and respect
  • 17. Goals
  • 18. BEGIN - Goals• Why does the team exist?• Dont control - tell them what the goal is, but not how to achieve it• Allow people to organize themselves around the work, rather than the work organizing itself around the people• Side effect - motivation o Increased sense of purpose and commitment
  • 19. Ingredients
  • 20. BEGIN - IngredientsDoes the team have what they need to thrive?• People, e.g.: o technical skills required by the work o interpersonal skills to work as a team o If these are not there need to add or work on them• Resources o required tools o access to information o education
  • 21. Nurture
  • 22. BEGIN - Nurture throughFeedback• This is not something you set and forget• On an ongoing basis you need to provide feedback to amplify the behaviour you want and dampen the behaviour you dont want• Use feedback rather than imposing control
  • 23. BEGIN - Nurture throughEvolution• Once teams have grown and earned trust change conditions to reduce control and encourage further self-organization o Boundaries should relax o Empowerment should increase o Goal - should from from specific work to a Vision
  • 24. "Agile managers work thesystem, not the people" - Jurgen Appelo, author of Management3.0
  • 25. Drawing - Debrief
  • 26. Drawing Exercise - DebriefHow does the drawing exercise fit the BEGIN model?Boundaries• Groups of at least 4• 10 minutes• Everyone at the table should drawEmpowerment• You decide what to drawGoal• Produce drawing showing benefits of self-organizationIngredients• paper, pens, table, youNurture • Chris and Shawn walking around, giving feedback
  • 27. Further Reading
  • 28. Further Reading
  • 29. Self-organizationThrough Self-selectingTeams
  • 30. Initial State• Company of about 500 people• Transitioning to Agile  Removing cubicles for team rooms  Agile training for everyone  Committed to the transformation• Re-aligning their work along Agile lines• But, just starting their Agile transformation
  • 31. Reason Needed to Reform• Company had teams oriented along component lines• Two teams needed to be reformed to become feature teams, capable of delivering end-to-end slices of functionality
  • 32. Reforming TeamsBut team persistence isimportant!Reforming teams is expensive.
  • 33. Typical Team Forming• Chosen by management• People grouped based on skill set• No team/project chartering• No team building
  • 34. Could we just put everyone in aroom and have them hammer outsome teams?
  • 35. Overview of Process• All people together in room• Stakeholders presented and discussed work and vision• Management provided their support for the people, and trust in the results
  • 36. Overview of Process - Exercises• Wanted to reveal people along three facets: o Skills, Values and Personality• Ran three exercises to create a Personal Information Sheet: o Marketplace of Skills o Motivating Values o Myers-Briggs Personality Type Index• Everyone presented their sheets to the group
  • 37. Choice of Exercises• Lots of different facets, so lots of possible exercises, for example: o Hard skills, soft skills, emotional intelligence, personal values, motivators, personality types, etc
  • 38. Overview of Exercise• Facilitated process to pick team membership
  • 39. How Does This Fit the BEGINModel?• Boundaries o What the team must or must not do• Empowerment o What authority is granted to the team• Goals o The reason the we are doing this• Ingredients o The raw materials for success• Nurture o Ongoing evolution
  • 40. BEGIN - Boundaries• Time boundary - Had to be done in one day• Teams had to be equally sized• Teams had to be whole teams - required all necessary skills• The exercises and choosing process were created for the group
  • 41. BEGIN - Empowerment• Able to create own team membership as a group• Able to request addition of extra people if they felt they were required• Opt out - anyone could opt out of the process• Veto - Consensus was required for the results
  • 42. BEGIN - Goals• Goal for this exercise: To create two well-balanced feature teams• Goal for teams: Stakeholders presented upcoming work and their vision• We had our own goals: o Show people it is possible to self-organize o Start self-organizing from the beginning o Start team building process as early as possible
  • 43. BEGIN - Ingredients• People in the room (team members, stakeholders, management, facilitator)• Exercises that were designed to reveal people to each other• Process was designed to ensure everyone was heard• As a result the missing ingredients became obvious, for example required skills
  • 44. BEGIN - Nurture• Management display of faith in teams• Facilitation of process to ensure it went smoothly• Followed up the self-selection process with team building activities • Able to build on the foundation that was established
  • 45. Exercise #2
  • 46. Exercise - BEGIN Solving aProblemEither:1. Pick someone at the table who has a situation where they want to encourage self-organizationOr:2. Canned Situation: You have hired a completely new team. Apply the BEGIN model in the context of someone at tables company. 15 minutes - Begin!
  • 47. Exercise DebriefVolunteers to present to group
  • 48. Further Reading
  • 49. Further Reading
  • 50. Questions?