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Agile Companies Go P.O.P.
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Agile Companies Go P.O.P.


This my keynote speech for YAPC::Europe, 2012. It went over very well, but it is effectively a rough draft of this concept and needs work. However, it was popular enough that people kept asking to see …

This my keynote speech for YAPC::Europe, 2012. It went over very well, but it is effectively a rough draft of this concept and needs work. However, it was popular enough that people kept asking to see it, even in its incomplete form.

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  • Thank YAPC::EUFirst conference since bookFather
  • LorenzoTorrentino 1550 1st edition. Ptolemaic view of the solar system.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:1550_SACROBOSCO_Tractatus_de_Sphaera_-_(16)_Ex_Libris_rare_-_Mario_Taddei_.JPG
  • http://hbr.org/2009/04/are-great-companies-just-lucky/ar/1
  • http://www.flickr.com/photos/redwoodphotography/4356518997/
  • A wiki you cannot edit
  • All Rights Reserved, Bonemill D-Signs Industrial Streetwear. Used with permission.Thanks to Michael King for permission to use this. http://www.facebook.com/pages/Bonemill-D-Signs-Industrial-Streetwear/184410624908816
  • Agile is a state of mind, not a series of steps
  • Kawasaki: “Beat Yamaha”Kennedy: “Go to the moon”
  • Are you a team player? Yes!What’s your weakness? I’m a workaholic!
  • Hard to lie!LesssubjectiveQuestions:situational, historical, technicalPractice the questions!
  • Wikis you can’t editKawasaki’s “Beat Yamaha”Kennedy: Go to the moon
  • Wikis you can’t edit
  • Edit the wiki. Tickets are CRUDMay as well print out a locked-down wiki and hand the hardcopy to new devs.Making decisions requires negative AND positive feedback. They need to know when they’re doing right. Let them know what success looks like.
  • Have big monitors on your walls
  • Galileo’s famous thought experiment: do heavier objects fall faster?A/B testing
  • If they don’t independently add value, it’s not a small project and you’re not managing risk (too much single-purpose software built)What if dugg.com goes bankrupt?What if dugg.com is eclipsed by a competitor?What if business goals change?
  • Doesn’t work with waterfallFewer lines of code to debug
  • Developer testing is not QAUnderstanding what happens BEFORE you deployUnit/Integration testing tradeoffs
  • Repeat what POP means
  • Collaborate: cooperate. To work with one anotherNegotiate: to deal or bargain with one another
  • Collaborate: cooperate. To work with one anotherNegotiate: to deal or bargain with one another


  • 1. Agile Companies Go P.O.P. T O WA R D S A N E W A G I L E M A N I F E S T O CURTIS “OVID” POEP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 2. Keynotes Why are you here?P.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 3. Are Great Companies Lucky? Published in Harvard Business Review Over 20,000 Companies From 1966 to 2006 http://hbr.org/2009/04/are-great-companies-just- lucky/ar/1P.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 4. Most studies Most studies are crap are crap http://www.flickr.com/photos/redwoodphotography/4356518997/P.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe http://www.flickr.com/photos/redwoodphotography/4356518997/§
  • 5. Sharpshooter Problem Shoot first. Announce your target.P.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 6. Reality trumps opinionBook Apparent Superstars Real SuperstarsAlchemy of Growth 29 0%Big Winners/Big Losers 9 13%Blueprint to a Billion 26 8%Breakthrough Company 9 17%Built to Last 18 7%Creative Destruction 11 0%Good to Great 11 0%Granularity of Growth 42 0%In Search of Excellence 14 0%Peak Performance 21 0%Profit from the Core 32 17%Stall Points 67 0%What Really Works 14 0%P.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 7. ?P.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 8. Between Between players of equal skill, a bad strategy beats no strategy. http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Chess-king.JPGP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 9. So let’s pick a good planP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 10. A Bad Planhttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Waterfall_model_(1).svgP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 11. Worst Case Scenario Lots of meetings Big projects AgileisAmateur Process is everythingP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 12. ConformP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 13. P.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 14. Agile Manifesto1. Individuals over process2. Software over documentation3. Customer collaboration over negotiation4. Change over plans http://agilemanifesto.org/P.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 15. ChessGoal CheckmateStrategy Plan to achieve your goalTactics Moves to support your strategyP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 16. BusinessGoal Mission statementStrategy An agile companyTactics P.O.P.P.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 17. What is P.O.P.?P eopleO rganizationP rocessP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 18. PeopleP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 19. People Are EverythingP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 20. Unstructured Interviews Interviewers aren’t trained in interviews Different candidates/different questions Personality valued over performance Very little predictive power https://apps.opm.gov/ADT/ContentFiles/SIGuide09.08.08.pdfP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 21. Structured Interviews Same questions in same order Focused on specific skills needed Excellent predictive powerP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 22. Structured Interviews1. Job analysis2. Determine desired skills3. Develop questions4. Goal, role, action, score, speculation (GRASS)5. Immediately assess answersP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 23. OrganizationP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 24. Eyjafjallajökull Eruption 2010 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Eyjafjallajokull_volcano_plume_2010_04_18.JPGP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 25. Agile Organizations Everyone is an owner Ownership means responsibility Responsibility requires authority Authority requires informationP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 26. Agile Organizations Small projects over large projects Information over opinion Employees are as important as customersP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 27. Ownership Implies TrustP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 28. Trust Did you hire the right people? Trust them to make decisions Decisions require informationP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 29. InformationP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 30. Log Everything http://www.flickr.com/photos/ex_magician/4931775369/P.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 31. Monitor Everything Monitor Everything http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Eyes_at_the_Prague_Police_Museum.jpgP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 32. Challenge Assumptions http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Leaning_Tower-Pisa.jpgP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 33. Large projects fail http://www.ralentz.com/old/space/feynman-report.html http://www.idlewords.com/2005/08/a_rocket_to_nowhere.htmP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Space_Shuttle_Columbia_launching.jpg
  • 34. Break Down Large Projects Don’t do large projects (major caveats!) Do a series of small projects Each should add valueP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 35. VA LV E http://www.valvesoftware.com/company/Valve_Handbook_LowRes.pdfP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 36. ProcessP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 37. This Subroutine sub perambulate { my @thingies = @_; foreach my $thing (@thingies) { # validate the thingy } return @thingies; }P.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 38. 5 lines of code … 5 page “code review” http://www.flickr.com/photos/titouanrusso/6153880964/P.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 39. Workflow: Management PerspectiveP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 40. Workflow: Developer PerspectiveP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 41. Workflow: Agile Perspective Compromise Tasks, not processes Testing, logging, and monitoringP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 42. Continuous … What? Continuous integration is old-skool! Try continuous deployment Courage instead of fear Minimize risk/maximize reward Continuous Deployment at IMVU: Doing the impossible fifty times a dayP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 43. Testing TDD is not QA Testing Tradeoffs between unit/integration testing A/B test your bug fixes! http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:94-707-6_hybrid_rocket_test.jpg P.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 44. Agile Project Management XP? Scrum? Kanban? Crystal? Something else?P.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 45. Implementing P.O.P. Becoming agile is a hard project An agile project One step at a time High value steps firstP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 46. Implementing P.O.P. Hiring: easy and hard Talk to your employees Assess risk/reward Pareto!P.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 47. Once You’re Agile Never forget your goal Always question your processes Agile is a mindset, not a processP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 48. Agile Manifesto1. People over process2. Software over documentation3. Customer collaboration over negotiation4. Change over plansP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe
  • 49. A New Agile Manifesto?1. People over process2. Information over opinion3. Courage over fear4. Change over plansP.O.P. Copyright 2012, Curtis "Ovid" Poe