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Group InteractionPatterns                The Keys for Highly Productive TeamsLiberating Structures                        ...
Better Software Conference East Conference My session - Wednesday, November 7, 2012 3:45
Why should you care about techniques for Group Work? Lead a more fulfilled life. Honestly!!! I’ll personally attest to i...
Why should I listen to you? You shouldn’t. Defer judgment. Try it. Listen to yourself. I’ve learned a lot while teaching...
Presentation Overview “Guide on the Side” (my preferred style) - “Technique Slam”   - GW - Group Work Pattern Language   ...
 “Including and unleashing everyone”LS - LiberatingStructures         33 liberating structures, each includes           ...
 Make an Invitation1-2-4-All       - What practical/theoretical topics could Beyond Agile  (from LS)       present that w...
 Authors: Jim Benson & Tonianne DeMaria BarryPK –               Two simple, main points (printed on alternate pages)Pers...
Very SimpleEvery meeting a                       Every meeting starts with a purposeKanban (from PK)                     ...
Every meeting is a Kanban. I mean it!!! Business  - 1-on-1 meetings with Supervisor  - Status meetings (until replaced b...
Kanban board during Seattle Lean Coffee
Kanban for Weekly “Wolf Meetings” & Special Tax Project
Kanban board for Michael - Old
Kanban board for Michael - New
Coming from Wolf Enterprises Kanban R&D…• Tablet form-factor UI • Easy upload/download • Light weight • Portable • Front &...
…trend setting• Double sided• Ambidextrous
… multiple after-market styli• Color• Width• Line pattern• Shapes• Very extensible
… object manipulation• Tactile• Digital• Intuitive• Extensible
Kanban board in ScrumMaster class
Event Planning Board at Kaizen Camp
 Make an InvitationTRIZ            - What can we do to reliably get the worst result  (from LS)       imaginable?        ...
 “A pattern language for bringing life to meetings and other gatherings”GW - Group Works     3 years of design, writing,...
Group Works Card Deck Categories Intent - Serving and attending to the larger purpose for the gathering and how it is man...
Group Works Card Deck The Group Works card deck is designed to support your process  as a group convenor, planner, facili...
What you get… 91 Full color cards … a few blank cards A 5-panel “key” to categories A history and
The whole deck
 SituationCase Study     - Regular meeting felt like it was getting in a rut. Power (from GW)       dynamics of de-facto ...
Group Work Cards (examples for case study)
 Jim & Michelle McCarthyCP –              Refined knowledge through 10+ years in XXX lab                  11 Commitment...
 Perfectee:Perfection Game            - Presents an object for perfection                          Perfector:  (from CP)...
Get Involved… Liberating Structures - Immersion Workshop Series in Seattle - #1 (Everyday Solutions) – (Redux) October 17...
Caveat “Talking abut Music is like dancing about Architecture.”   -- Elvis Costello That is, the “knowing” is in the “do...
Closing 1-2-4-All - What is your biggest take away? - What is left unanswered? - Go learn. Go play!
About…                                   LS - Liberating Structures                                   LiberatingStructures...
LOL Cats!We don’t need no stinkin’ LOL cats. Here’s a cutie Wolf!
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Group Interaction Patterns - The Keys for Highly Productive Teams (BeyondAgile Seattle - Sep 2012)

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Development teams often fail to recognize the complex group interactions and multi-person relationships that are critical to build and maintain a highly productive team. Instead, they adopt follow-the-crowd practices such as stand up meetings or Kanban boards without understanding the underlying fundamentals. Michael Wolf introduces group interaction patterns of highly productive development teams to provide a framework for understanding group interactions and a vocabulary for discussing ways to improve. Michael will facilitate a highly-experiential introduction to techniques from 4 group work practices:
* Liberating Structures
* The Core Protocols
* Group Works Card Deck (& Group Works Pattern Language)
* Personal Kanban

Published in: Business, Technology
  • I presented this talk at BeyondAgile in Seattle in September, 2012, as a dry run of the presentation at Better Software East in Orlando in November 2012 (which see).
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Group Interaction Patterns - The Keys for Highly Productive Teams (BeyondAgile Seattle - Sep 2012)

  1. 1. Group InteractionPatterns The Keys for Highly Productive TeamsLiberating Structures Presented by Michael R. Wolf MichaelRWolf@att.net @LearningWolf 206-679-7941 -- All Mammals Learn by Playing
  2. 2. Better Software Conference East Conference My session - Wednesday, November 7, 2012 3:45
  3. 3. Why should you care about techniques for Group Work? Lead a more fulfilled life. Honestly!!! I’ll personally attest to it. You don’t have to tell “The Boss” why you’re doing it…. … but it’s an open secret. It’s all inter-related.
  4. 4. Why should I listen to you? You shouldn’t. Defer judgment. Try it. Listen to yourself. I’ve learned a lot while teaching programmers - Physics, Electrical Engineering, Computer Science, yada yada… - Departmental Meyers-Briggs at AT&T Intra-peneur in ’92 - Almost 20 10+ years on the road, on-site, in the trenches as programmer trainer - Consulting at many, many companies I’ve done a lot of extra-curricular training at home. (Thanks, Wendy!) Wiked Question (from LS) - If I really do believe that you are already very smart and capable, how can I possibly help you?
  5. 5. Presentation Overview “Guide on the Side” (my preferred style) - “Technique Slam” - GW - Group Work Pattern Language - LS - Liberating Structures - CP - Core Protocols - PK - Personal Kanban - Experience the techniques - Leave you wanting more…. - Flight of beer – sample now for later enjoyment - Speed dating – overview now for later deepening “Sage on the Stage” (only when “necessary”) Closing
  6. 6.  “Including and unleashing everyone”LS - LiberatingStructures  33 liberating structures, each includes - What is made possible? - Micro structures & Design Elements => Min Specs - A structuring invitation - How the space is arranged and what materials are needed - How participation is distributed - How groups are configures - A sequence of steps and time allocation  Keith McCandless & Henri Lipmanowicz  Immersion Workshop - Wed, Oct 17 -- #1 (Redux) - Thu, Oct 18 -- #2 - IncludeAndUnleash.eventbrite.com
  7. 7.  Make an Invitation1-2-4-All - What practical/theoretical topics could Beyond Agile (from LS) present that would help you create better products?  Distribute Participation - I will be timekeeper, facilitator - You will think, write, listen, share and refine  Configure Groups - Group of 1 – think & write - Group of 2 – listen & share - Group of 4 – listen & refine - All - facilitated – collect & display  Arrange Space - Face-to-face. Knee-to-knee. Groups of 4. - Disregard “Space Police”  Sequence & Allocate Time - Listen for sound and directions
  8. 8.  Authors: Jim Benson & Tonianne DeMaria BarryPK –  Two simple, main points (printed on alternate pages)Personal Kanban - Visualize your work - Limit your Work In Progress  Jim co-founded Seattle Lean Coffee 2-3 years ago  Kaizen Camp also founded by Jim and Tonianne - “Discussing the Future of Work” - Seattle in 2011 & 2012 - Coming to NYC, SoCal, Boulder, DC, Atlanta, San Francisco, Boston - Plans for on Tel Aviv, London, Berlin, and Australia
  9. 9. Very SimpleEvery meeting a  Every meeting starts with a purposeKanban (from PK)  No meeting starts with an agenda  Everyone creates agenda items•Pinnacle of procrastination delay - Written on stickiesmanagement - Placed in “Backlog”•Values all participants insights  Every item is briefly introduced•Engages all participants  Everyone distributes 2-4 votes across all items  Voila! A prioritized backlog. Timely. Relevant.  Work commences as item moves from “Backlog” to “WIP”  Limit WIP (Work in Progress)  Move item to “Done” when finished - … or time box is exceeded - … with consensus on extensions - Happy Dance! Celebrate!
  10. 10. Every meeting is a Kanban. I mean it!!! Business - 1-on-1 meetings with Supervisor - Status meetings (until replaced by task board) - Working meetings Civic - Ballard Greenways - St Luke’s Urban Garden (TheSLUG) - Ballard Urban Gardeners (BUG) Personal - “Wolf meetings” - Special projects (i.e. IRS audit, yearly taxes, weekend getaway)
  11. 11. Kanban board during Seattle Lean Coffee
  12. 12. Kanban for Weekly “Wolf Meetings” & Special Tax Project
  13. 13. Kanban board for Michael - Old
  14. 14. Kanban board for Michael - New
  15. 15. Coming from Wolf Enterprises Kanban R&D…• Tablet form-factor UI • Easy upload/download • Light weight • Portable • Front & back lit • Solar, AC, DC, Candle, &c • 0% opacity • Landscape & Portrait • Doubles as book holder and paper weight
  16. 16. …trend setting• Double sided• Ambidextrous
  17. 17. … multiple after-market styli• Color• Width• Line pattern• Shapes• Very extensible
  18. 18. … object manipulation• Tactile• Digital• Intuitive• Extensible
  19. 19. Kanban board in ScrumMaster class
  20. 20. Event Planning Board at Kaizen Camp
  21. 21.  Make an InvitationTRIZ - What can we do to reliably get the worst result (from LS) imaginable? - How does this compare with current procedures? - What can we stop doing?  Distribute Participation - <As in 1-2-4-All>  Configure Groups - <As in 1-2-4-All>  Arrange Space - <As in 1-2-4-All>  Sequence & Allocate Time - <As in 1-2-4-All>
  22. 22.  “A pattern language for bringing life to meetings and other gatherings”GW - Group Works  3 years of design, writing, and layout from “core team”  Each of 91 Cards in 9 Categories has:Pattern Card Deck - Title - Image - Heart - Related cards - Category glyph  First printing 4Q2011  “Steward Circle” is getting wisdom out to users, and also listening to how they’re being used  Common uses - Pre-event planning & Post-event evaluation - Individual & Team skill development - Breaking out of a fixed mindset  Core team: Tree Bressen, Dave Pollard, Sue Woehrlin  Needs “stewards” and early adopters. (Contact me!)
  23. 23. Group Works Card Deck Categories Intent - Serving and attending to the larger purpose for the gathering and how it is manifested, including addressing its longer term meaning and consequence. Why are we here, what’s our shared passion, and what are we aiming to accomplish. Context - Understanding and working with the broader context and circumstances both in place and in culture. Relationship - Creating and maintaining quality connection with each other, honouring our full selves, and recognizing power relations. Includes being authentic and sometimes foregrounding emotional needs in the moment rather than task. Flow - Covers rhythm, energy, and pacing. When we do what and for how long. Things to pay attention to both in anticipating the event and in responding to circumstances in the moment, to support movement along the intended trajectory toward the desired outcome. Creativity - Using multiple intelligences and a variety of modes to open up creative possibilities. Perspective - Noticing and helping the group more openly and thoughtfully explore different ways of seeing an issue. Watching, understanding, and appreciating divergent viewpoints, ideas, values and opinions. The key is in how you look at something. Modeling - The essential skills and responsibilities for both facilitator and participants, to demonstrate good group practice and ensure the process goes well. Includes monitoring, nurturing and mentoring the group, enabling their effective personal and collective self- management. Inquiry & Synthesis - Discovering coherence and moving toward convergence. From gathering information to exploring knowledge to arriving at understanding, shared meaning, consensus, or clear outcomes. Faith - Trusting and accepting what happens in a spirit of letting go and letting come. The mystery, synergy, and ineffable, complex magic of emergence. You can invite it, but you can’t control it. Felt as a deep sense of connection not only to those assembled and to the work’s purpose but to the larger universe as well.
  24. 24. Group Works Card Deck The Group Works card deck is designed to support your process as a group convenor, planner, facilitator, or participant. The people who developed this deck spent several years pooling our knowledge of the best group events we had ever witnessed. We looked at meetings, conferences, retreats, town halls, and other sessions that give organizations life, solve a longstanding dilemma, get stuck relationships flowing, result in clear decisions with wide support, and make a lasting difference. We also looked at routine, well-run meetings that simply bring people together and get lots of stuff done. The deck consists of 91 full-colour 3.5" x 5.5" cards (plus a few blanks to add your own patterns), a five-panel explanatory insert, and an accompanying booklet explaining the purpose and history of the project and suggesting uses for the cards in group process work.
  25. 25. What you get… 91 Full color cards … a few blank cards A 5-panel “key” to categories A history and
  26. 26. The whole deck
  27. 27.  SituationCase Study - Regular meeting felt like it was getting in a rut. Power (from GW) dynamics of de-facto leader seemed to be excluding perspectives. I saw opportunity for group as training lab to gain experience at facilitating, not merely content.  Experiments - Facilitate input from quieter participants - Balance the interruption dynamic - One-on-one
  28. 28. Group Work Cards (examples for case study)
  29. 29.  Jim & Michelle McCarthyCP –  Refined knowledge through 10+ years in XXX lab  11 CommitmentsCore Protocols 1. I commit to engage when present. 2. I will seek to perceive more than I seek to be perceived. 3. I will use teams, especially when undertaking difficult tasks. … 11. I will never do anything dumb on purpose.  11 Core Protocols (Structured Conversations) 1 & 2. Pass (Unpass) 3. Check In 4. Check Out 5. Ask For Help 6. Protocol Check 7. Intention Check 8. Decider 9. Resolution 10. Personal Alignment 11. Investigate  Jim & Michelle McCarthy
  30. 30.  Perfectee:Perfection Game - Presents an object for perfection  Perfector: (from CP) - “On a scale of 1 to 10, I rate this object X based on how much value I can add.” - “What I liked about the performance of object X was…”•Integrates best ideas - “To make it a 10, you would have to do yada, yada, yada”.•Improves some object
  31. 31. Get Involved… Liberating Structures - Immersion Workshop Series in Seattle - #1 (Everyday Solutions) – (Redux) October 17 - #2 (Big Projects) – October 18 - #3 (Strategy & Design) & #4 (Transforming Movements) -- TBD Group Works Personal Kanban - Periodic seminars around Seattle, U.S., and Mundo The Core Protocols - Online discussion group via FaceBook NCDD (National Council for Dialogue & Deliberation) - National gathering – Seattle – Oct 12-14 - Pre event – Mapping Methods with the Group Works Cards
  32. 32. Caveat “Talking abut Music is like dancing about Architecture.” -- Elvis Costello That is, the “knowing” is in the “doing”. Learn by doing… - … playing - … because “All mammals learn by playing!”
  33. 33. Closing 1-2-4-All - What is your biggest take away? - What is left unanswered? - Go learn. Go play!
  34. 34. About… LS - Liberating Structures LiberatingStructures.com Oct 17,18 – Immersion Workshop Series in Seattle GW - Group Works Card Deck GroupWorksDeck.orgMichael R. Wolf MichaelRWolf@att.net 206-679-7941 @LearningWolf PK - Personal Kanban -- All Mammals Learn by Playing PersonalKanban.com
  35. 35. LOL Cats!We don’t need no stinkin’ LOL cats. Here’s a cutie Wolf!

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