My Agile Story - Presentation at AgileNCR 2013


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Story of how we transformed our company from financial stagnation to one of rapid growth and even greater growth BHAGs using Agile principles of client engagement and Agile contracting. This talk was delivered by Rahul Dewan at the (2013).

Published in: Business
  • Rahul, hope to see you at discuss agile and share transformation journey (though we have just started it )
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  • Thanks very much Pankaj. Honestly, had not expected appreciation for what i had to share as you shared after my talk. It was really encouraging. And i am committing to present this same talk at more Agile and Entrepreneurial/Business sessions. Thank you so much.
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  • Dear Rahul,

    It was really motivating and encouraging to have a session from you in Agile conference. During your presentation of Srijan as a successful venture, it looks more of a dream story, but at the same time it gives a confidence and true feeling that still company's can be run with such a degree of transparency and honesty. You are truly a source of inspiration for all youth talents who wants to be an entrepreneur and want to contribute for the society.

    Hats off to you and very warm regards. Thanks.

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My Agile Story - Presentation at AgileNCR 2013

  1. 1. MY AGILE STORY How we transformed our companyRahul Dewanwww.srijan.inPhone: +91 (0124) 421 0160Mobile: +91 98102
  2. 2. Our Culture• Team oriented• Take on challenges• Work very hard• Nimble, Responsive, Responsible• Less processes (chaos + processes) 2
  3. 3. Looking Back – Challenges• Short-term projects• Fixed Cost• Incorrect estimations (nearly always)• Tail of the projects always dragged (endlessly)• Each time we bore the brunt (of such cost over-runs)• Change requests were “difficult to capture”, “scope” and estimate• Fingers pointing all over (sales -- developers) 3
  4. 4. Looking Back – Challenges• Financial constraints led to staffing developers on new projects (before completing one at hand – endless project tail!)• One-person-team staffed on a project, was not unusual• Low developer morale• Low leadership morale• Poor financial health (after a lot of hard-work for years) 4
  5. 5. Looking Back : NASSCOM #Emergeout 2011• Heard a speaker from the NASSCOM mentoring program - “Infosys knows its revenues 2 years ahead” - “I got out of projects; looked for clients offering long-term contracts”• How could i get long-term contracts for Srijan? 5
  6. 6. Looking back : Agile workshop• Heard about a SCRUM Master certification program; negotiated coaching for Srijan• Opened us up to “Agile contracting”, “staffing dedicated teams” 6
  7. 7. Looking back : Agilecon India 2012• Slot to speak about “distributed startups”• An opportunity to interact with Agile coaches• “Hungry for answers! Agile-Contracting – how does that work? How do i get engage clients in not-fixed-cost”• “Break the project into an induction phase, development phase, and handover phase” - came repeated responses 7
  8. 8. Looking back : Moving Forward• Convinced• Now i needed a few clients who would agree to my new found philosophy for project success• Had to “manage the stress” of finding alternate clients – and calming nerves internally 8
  9. 9. Serendipity – “Happy co- incidences”• Just 3 months earlier we had acquired a big client – who truly believed in “Agile”• With this “financial cushion” to negotiate we refused fixed-cost clients, and “hugged” the more open clients• Converted a fixed-cost-mindset client to an Agile-multiple- contracts client - they loved our “integrity” and “honesty” in sharing why it would be lose-lose deal otherwise - We “hugged” them (more cushion!) 9
  10. 10. What was changing?• Staffing “teams” to deliver working software every 2 weeks• Internal demos, client demos• Retrospectives – feedback sessions among the team for self- improvement and project-improvement• Billing with every delivered Sprint• Cash-flows and financial health was looking up 10
  11. 11. What was changing?• Dev team was focussed on one-project-at-a-time• Software quality automatically improved; better code documentation• Long-term project bookings, enabled “hiring” good people (and waiting for the right hires)• Higher employee-engagement; satisfaction• Happier workplace• Engaged (and smarter) clients• Re-orienting roles – for the first time we were defining role and design our company (Organisation Design) with clarity 11
  12. 12. 12
  13. 13. 2 week Agile Template 13
  14. 14. What to expect during this change?• A willingness to let go off clients (fixed-cost)• Building new vocabulary -- “Sorry (in 2 days with 2-page RFP) we cant say what your product will cost!”• “Being Agile” -- loads of internal coaching, arguments• Managing the leadership folks (I lost a partner!)• Managing employee concerns 14
  15. 15. What to expect during this change?• Participate in loads of events, meetups• Find clients who can offer a “financial cushion” during the transformation process• Find an Agile Coach; engage long-term• Be patient! Stay focussed! 15
  16. 16. MY AGILE STORY@rahuldewan ; @srijanJoin “Our Agile Journey” -- 16