Building High-Gravity
           Distributed Teams


Derek W. Wade
dwade@kumido.com   www.kumido.com

          @derekwwade
Experiment: Ask Your Tweeps



         Recommendations and reasons for good but simple wiki?
         Need answers in 30 ...
The Dimensions of Distribution
                                                                        Fragmented
        ...
X Dimension: Separation
                          “distance” between Team members

                                       ...
Minimal Separation…                Maximum Separation




                     Ideal Agile             “Real” Agile
      ...
Communication Model


          Sender’s                        Transmitted              Received
                        ...
Distributed Team Simulation (I)


                 “Low-Fidelity...”

                                                    ...
Sim (I)
                                      POKER HANDS

             5 of a kind                                       ...
Sim (I)
                                      RULES OF PLAY
        •      Players trade cards at your table to make good ...
Sim (I)
                                      TEAM ROLES

          Players
              • Trade cards at table to make b...
Sim (I)
                                      DEBRIEF

             Without drastically changing the rules...
            ...
The Dimensions of Distribution
                                                                        Fragmented
        ...
Gravity                     Use the Dimensions!



                         e.g. weak product owner               e.g. Sim...
Y Dimension: Gravity
                       anything which increases the team’s focus

                                   ...
Big Attractor: Alternative to Comm


                Sender’s                         Transmitted              Received
  ...
“WorkScapes*”
                                                      Tec
                                                  ...
Distributed Team Simulation (II)




  misseddrawpoker.com




                                      A   B

2010 Kumido Ad...
Sim (II)
                                      RULES / ROLES
         •      Players may not talk to other teams about the...
Sim (II)
                                      DEBRIEF

                • What worked?
             Without drastically ch...
eWorkScapes




2010 Kumido Adaptive Strategies LLC                 www.kumido.com
eWorkScape: Wiki Backlog




2010 Kumido Adaptive Strategies LLC           www.kumido.com
eWorkScape: Shared Writing
Retrospectives (webcast, gdocs):
  • Provide doc structure, but
       let the team fill in
    ...
eWorkScape: “Conversation Room”

Just like “babble” in a war room:
   • Always-on
   • No annoying notifications
   • Has a...
Thank You!
                        (now what next?)

1. Don’t just try to reduce
   Separation... increase Gravity!
2. Sni...
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High-Gravity Distributed Agile Teams

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Agile is about people and collaboration. When we try to do distributed Agile, we can forget that and focus on tools.

This presentation (recently delivered at the GE Agile Conference in Detroit) shows some of the reasons we fall into management modes which harm Agile teams -- and some ways to foster the true spirit of Agile even for remote workers.

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Transcript of "High-Gravity Distributed Agile Teams"

  1. 1. Building High-Gravity Distributed Teams Derek W. Wade dwade@kumido.com www.kumido.com @derekwwade
  2. 2. Experiment: Ask Your Tweeps Recommendations and reasons for good but simple wiki? Need answers in 30 minutes! Please use this tag: #hgadt Thanks! Use conference hashtag if it exists! 2010 Kumido Adaptive Strategies LLC www.kumido.com
  3. 3. The Dimensions of Distribution Fragmented Weak Team ion Gravity ut rib D ist Strong Unified Team Low High Separation 2010 Kumido Adaptive Strategies LLC www.kumido.com
  4. 4. X Dimension: Separation “distance” between Team members G pro eogr xim aph Als ity ica ๏ Fully colocated, local tools, same culture o cu , tim l, l e exp ture, s zone ๏ On-site, but not co-located erie nce kill, ๏ 2 colocated teams working remotely from each other ๏ Colocated teamlets of 2-3 people working remotely from other teamlets ๏ Fully separated team (e.g. each person physically distant from the other) Low Separation High 2010 Kumido Adaptive Strategies LLC www.kumido.com
  5. 5. Minimal Separation… Maximum Separation Ideal Agile “Real” Agile therefore Minimal Structure… Maximum Structure? 2010 Kumido Adaptive Strategies LLC www.kumido.com
  6. 6. Communication Model Sender’s Transmitted Received Sender Receiver Knowledge Message Message Received Transmitted Sender’s Receiver Sender Message Message Knowledge on s ing ocus Focu n = f io arat model Sep this on 2010 Kumido Adaptive Strategies LLC www.kumido.com
  7. 7. Distributed Team Simulation (I) “Low-Fidelity...” gfkpoker.com “System” = Total Score “Components” = Poker hands “Email” = notes passed 2010 Kumido Adaptive Strategies LLC www.kumido.com
  8. 8. Sim (I) POKER HANDS 5 of a kind = 4 pts = 3 pts = 2 pts = 1 pt freemoneypoker.info 2010 Kumido Adaptive Strategies LLC www.kumido.com
  9. 9. Sim (I) RULES OF PLAY • Players trade cards at your table to make good poker hands. • If Players want to trade cards with another table, you have to write a message, and ask your Dealer to trade for you. • Players may not pass notes to , show cards to, or ask to see, cards at another table. Info via the Dealer only. • If Players want a card from another table, they must give up one of theirs. • You make points according to what hands are at your table at end of game • “Whole-team scoring:” the only score that counts is the total score of the room! 2010 Kumido Adaptive Strategies LLC www.kumido.com
  10. 10. Sim (I) TEAM ROLES Players • Trade cards at table to make best hands • Ask Dealer to trade cards with other tables • Keep score for their table! Dealer • Gets cards for their table at start of game • Handles all card exchanges between tables 2010 Kumido Adaptive Strategies LLC www.kumido.com
  11. 11. Sim (I) DEBRIEF Without drastically changing the rules... • What would help? • What problems would still remain? 2010 Kumido Adaptive Strategies LLC www.kumido.com
  12. 12. The Dimensions of Distribution Fragmented Weak Team ion Gravity ut rib D ist Strong Unified Team Low High Separation 2010 Kumido Adaptive Strategies LLC www.kumido.com
  13. 13. Gravity Use the Dimensions! e.g. weak product owner e.g. Sim (I) e.g. Ideal Agile e.g. “Real” Agile Separation 2010 Kumido Adaptive Strategies LLC www.kumido.com
  14. 14. Y Dimension: Gravity anything which increases the team’s focus • Existing work product • Clear architecture • Stable technology platform • Strong Product Owner • Team Vision • Mission (are there “secret missions?) Smells… • How often does the Team talk? • Is their effort/output visible? Do they learn?? 2010 Kumido Adaptive Strategies LLC www.kumido.com
  15. 15. Big Attractor: Alternative to Comm Sender’s Transmitted Received Sender Receiver Knowledge Message Message Received Transmitted Sender’s Receiver Sender Message Message Knowledge 2010 Kumido Adaptive Strategies LLC www.kumido.com
  16. 16. “WorkScapes*” Tec “off hnol loa o d c gy he ogn lps itio n” ** A B * Cross, 2010 ** Dror, 2008 2010 Kumido Adaptive Strategies LLC www.kumido.com
  17. 17. Distributed Team Simulation (II) misseddrawpoker.com A B 2010 Kumido Adaptive Strategies LLC www.kumido.com
  18. 18. Sim (II) RULES / ROLES • Players may not talk to other teams about the cards, can only move them. Players may talk among their team. • Anyone may move any card, at any time, except: • Breaking an existing hand: • Players must ask the Dealer for the team • Point to card you want: “may I?” • Only Dealers may allow breaking an existing hand 2010 Kumido Adaptive Strategies LLC www.kumido.com
  19. 19. Sim (II) DEBRIEF • What worked? Without drastically changing the rules... • What would help? • What problems might still remain? • How could you improve them? 2010 Kumido Adaptive Strategies LLC www.kumido.com
  20. 20. eWorkScapes 2010 Kumido Adaptive Strategies LLC www.kumido.com
  21. 21. eWorkScape: Wiki Backlog 2010 Kumido Adaptive Strategies LLC www.kumido.com
  22. 22. eWorkScape: Shared Writing Retrospectives (webcast, gdocs): • Provide doc structure, but let the team fill in • Team is able to “just talk” • Anyone can capture items as they are heard • Visible to all, live! “Retrospective using communication tools is like having sex by phone” -- @xpinjection 2010 Kumido Adaptive Strategies LLC www.kumido.com
  23. 23. eWorkScape: “Conversation Room” Just like “babble” in a war room: • Always-on • No annoying notifications • Has a history • Broadcast, not point-cast “I store my knowledge in my friends.” 2010 Kumido Adaptive Strategies LLC www.kumido.com
  24. 24. Thank You! (now what next?) 1. Don’t just try to reduce Separation... increase Gravity! 2. Sniff out and beware “communication models” 3. Evaluate tools according to how Derek W. Wade they help create Gravity dwade@kumido.com www.kumido.com 4. Create eWorkScapes @derekwwade 5. Leverage Social Learning Let’s see what our Tweeps said!

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