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Keys to crafting an effective agile culture (svcc, 10.15)

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What differentiates a successful software development culture?

Among successful cultures, what makes an agile one stand out?

We think successful software development cultures are ones that are not just performant but that both delight customers and are a joy for every team member to be part of.

One of the characteristics that differentiates agile cultures is that (finally!), it’s not just managers who are responsible for crafting culture - but everyone. And agile, done well, means every one of us engages in the crafting of it.

In addition to training teams in agile, Ron Lichty has spent years coaching managers about how their roles change with agile. While his recent Addison Wesley book, Managing the Unmanageable: Rules, Tools, and Insights for Managing Software People and Teams, didn’t zero in on agile, both the book and the classes that he and his coauthor give current and prospective managers espouse a deeply agile mindset for managers.

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Keys to crafting an effective agile culture (svcc, 10.15)

  1. 1. Keys to Crafting an Effective Agile Development Culture Ron Lichty, Ron Lichty Consulting www.ronlichty.com
  2. 2. Keys to Crafting an Effective Agile Development Culture Ron Lichty, Ron Lichty Consulting www.ronlichty.com
  3. 3. Ron Lichty, Managing Software People & Teams SOFTWEST © Ron Lichty 3
  4. 4. Coauthor, Study of Product Team Performance http://www.ronlichty.com/study.html © Ron Lichty 4
  5. 5. Addison Wesley: http://www.ManagingTheUnmanageable.net
  6. 6. Rules of Thumb / Nuggets of Wisdom* * 300 in the book / more at http://managingtheunmanageable.net/morerulesofthumb.html © Ron Lichty 6
  7. 7. Rules of Thumb / Nuggets of Wisdom* • Measure twice, cut once. • Life is simpler when you plow around the stump. • Brooks’s Law: Adding manpower to a late software project makes it later. – Frederick P. Brooks Jr. * 300 in the book / more at http://managingtheunmanageable.net/morerulesofthumb.html
  8. 8. Before We Begin • What is your role in your company today? • Manager? • Project Manager? • Product Owner? • Scrum Master? • Individual Contributor? • Have you completed Agile Projects?
  9. 9. Agenda • Insights from successful software cultures • Q&A
  10. 10. So what defines “Success”?
  11. 11. So what defines “Success”? • Delivering scope? • Within budget? • On schedule?
  12. 12. So what defines “Success”? • The Agile Principles begin… –Our highest priority is to satisfy the customer… -- www.AgileManifesto.org
  13. 13. So what defines “Success”? In the beginning, everyone will talk about scope, and budget, and schedule. But in the end, nobody really cares about any of those things. The only thing they care about is this: People will love your software, or they won’t. So that’s the only criterion to which you should truly manage. —Joseph Kleinschmidt, CTO
  14. 14. So what defines “Success”? • Go beyond the Agile Principles… –Our highest priority is to delight the customer… -- www.AgileManifesto.org
  15. 15. How do we do that? • Agile practices?
  16. 16. Agile Practices Do Deliver Value
  17. 17. Agile Practices Deliver Value • Planning Daily • Planning Weekly (or biweekly or…) • Planning Publicly • Ordering Work Based on Customer Value • Together defining “Done” • Delivering Frequently • Sharing how we’re doing • Reflecting on how to do better
  18. 18. Agile Practices Deliver Value • Standups – Standups matter: – Effective, Daily Standups --2015 Study of Product Team Performance
  19. 19. Agile Practices Do Deliver Value
  20. 20. Voting Machines Deliver Value, too
  21. 21. Voting Machines Deliver Value, too • But no one claims voting machines are what make us a democracy
  22. 22. Similarly… Agile Practices Don’t (by themselves) Make Us Agile
  23. 23. Similarly… Agile Practices Aren’t Enough to Make Us Agile “Becoming Agile is hard. It is harder than most other organizational change efforts I’ve witnessed or been part of [for reasons] including…the need to avoid turning Scrum into a list of best practices.” --Mike Cohn
  24. 24. Agile Values and Agile Principles Make Us Agile
  25. 25. Agile Values Make Us Agile The Agile Manifesto – We value: • Individuals and interactions over processes and tools • Working software over comprehensive documentation • Customer collaboration over contract negotiation • Responding to change over following a plan -- http://agilemanifesto.org/
  26. 26. Agile Principles Make Us Agile • Build projects around motivated individuals • Trust… to get the job done • Face-to-face conversation • Self-organizing teams • The team reflects, …tunes, …adjusts -- http://agilemanifesto.org/
  27. 27. Agile Principles Make Us Agile • Build projects around motivated individuals • Trust… to get the job done • Face-to-face conversation • Self-organizing teams • The team reflects, …tunes, …adjusts -- http://agilemanifesto.org/
  28. 28. Self-Organizing Teams • If our self-organizing team were an acting troupe, … What kind of acting do we do?
  29. 29. Self-Organizing Teams • If our self-organizing team were an acting troupe, … What kind of acting do we do? • If our self-organizing team were a music group, … What kind of music do we perform?
  30. 30. Self-Organizing Teams • If our self-organizing team were an acting troupe, … What kind of acting do we do? • If our self-organizing team were a music combo, … What kind of music do we perform? • Who is the leader?
  31. 31. Support Agile Values Value the Agile Manifesto over sets of practices – We value: • Individuals and interactions over processes and tools • Working software over comprehensive documentation • Customer collaboration over contract negotiation • Responding to change over following a plan -- http://agilemanifesto.org/ © Mickey W. Mantle & Ron Lichty 32
  32. 32. © Mickey W. Mantle & Ron Lichty 33 http://agilemanifesto.org/principles.html
  33. 33. Projects Not Suitable for Agile?
  34. 34. Projects Not Suitable for Agile? • Micromanagement
  35. 35. Projects Not Suitable for Agile? • Micromanagement disrupts Agile • Micromanagement prevents Best Teams • Micromanagement prevents Learning • Micromanaged teams become order-takers
  36. 36. Projects Not Suitable for Agile? • Micromanagement disrupts Agile • Micromanagement prevents Best Teams • Micromanagement prevents Learning • Micromanaged teams become order-takers • Agile calls for everyone on the team to step up • Micromanagement causes everyone to step back
  37. 37. Shared Leadership… and Managers
  38. 38. • Managers of teams • Project managers • Program managers • Scrum masters • Product managers? • Product owners? Shared Leadership… and Managers
  39. 39. • What do all those managers have in common? Shared Leadership… and Managers
  40. 40. • What do all those managers have in common? – we run things – we give direction – we tell people what to do – we like being the center of attention Shared Leadership… and Managers
  41. 41. “If you’re the ScrumMaster and everyone is looking at you, you’re doing it wrong.” --Marilson Campos Shared Leadership… and Managers
  42. 42. Managers and Agile • “A common misconception is that because of this reliance on self-organizing teams, there is little or no role for leaders of agile teams. Nothing could be further from the truth.” --Mike Cohn, Succeeding with Agile © Ron Lichty 43
  43. 43. --Agile Learning Labs, Laura Powers © Ron Lichty 44
  44. 44. Agile: “Servant Leaders”
  45. 45. Managers and Agile • Fostering an Agile Culture • Modeling, Defending, Evangelizing Agile Values • Empowering Self-Organization & Excellence © Ron Lichty 46
  46. 46. Managers and Agile • Fostering an Agile Culture • Modeling, Defending, Evangelizing Agile Values • Empowering Self-Organization & Excellence • Removing Impediments © Ron Lichty 47
  47. 47. Managers and Agile • Fostering an Agile Culture • Modeling, Defending, Evangelizing Agile Values • Empowering Self-Organization & Excellence • Removing Impediments • Counseling, Coaching and Mentoring • Scaling Scrum • Hiring and Firing © Ron Lichty 48
  48. 48. Managers and Agile • Fostering an Agile Culture • Modeling, Defending, Evangelizing Agile Values • Empowering Self-Organization & Excellence © Ron Lichty 49
  49. 49. Creating an Agile Culture • TheoryY:“enabling”,“empowering”,“developmental",“continuousimprovement”->ServantLeadership McGregor's X-Y Theory© Ron Lichty 50
  50. 50. Managers and Agile • Creating an Agile Culture Lean-Agile management is the art of leading people, not managing them... Leading people involves creating the correct environment, focusing them on the right things, and trusting them to do their work... In Lean-Agile, the manager has two primary responsibilities: • setting the outcomes or goals expected of the team; • assisting the doers in creating a better process and workspace to get their jobs done... --Alan Shalloway, Net Objectives © Ron Lichty 51
  51. 51. Leaders and Agile • Rules of Thumb Management sets the boundaries of what needs to be done and says to the team, I trust you to figure out how to get it done.
  52. 52. Empowerment Trust but verify.
  53. 53. Empowerment 54© Mickey W. Mantle & Ron Lichty Trust but verify. -RONALD REAGAN
  54. 54. Empowerment 55© Mickey W. Mantle & Ron Lichty Trust but verify. -RONALD REAGAN quoting VALDIMIR LENIN
  55. 55. Empowerment 56© Mickey W. Mantle & Ron Lichty Trust but verify. -RONALD REAGAN quoting VALDIMIR LENIN – imperative not to micromanage – the essence of delegation – setting expected outcomes for teams
  56. 56. Empowerment 57© Mickey W. Mantle & Ron Lichty Trust but verify. -RONALD REAGAN quoting VALDIMIR LENIN I inspect what I expect. - ALAN LEFKOF, Netopia CEO, quoting LOU GERSTNER
  57. 57. Communicating • Create a culture of communication – at every level – with everyone • up, down, within and across • “We have two ears and one mouth. Use them in this ratio.” — Kimberly Wiefling
  58. 58. Communication 59© Mickey W. Mantle & Ron Lichty You cannot overcommunicate. -RON LICHTY
  59. 59. Communication: Virtual Teams • There is never enough communication • Commitment to communicate • No substitute for face-to-face meetings 60 © Mickey W. Mantle & Ron Lichty The more distance between teammates, the more you have to formalize communication and make it explicit. -TED YOUNG, Development Manager & Agile Coach, Guidewire
  60. 60. • Agile Culture lives inside Corporate Culture • Agile Culture Corporate Culture≠ • What’s your corporate culture? Establishing Culture inside Culture
  61. 61. Establishing Culture inside Culture • Does your company live its values? – What of those values can you leverage? – Wherever you can, leverage culture & values • Programming culture corporate culture≠ – Leverage – Bolster – Wall off incompatible values – Substitute agile values
  62. 62. Teamwork and Collaboration • Base agile culture around creating self- organizing, high-performing teams • Reward teamwork and shared leadership over heroism 63© Mickey W. Mantle & Ron Lichty
  63. 63. Establishing Culture Publicly reward or acknowledge engineers who act in a way that supports the culture that you want to create. -Juanita Mah, engineering manager
  64. 64. Managers and Agile • Model, Defend, Evangelize Agile Values “Managers are still needed. Not so much for their planning and controlling ability, but for the important job of interfacing on the team’s behalf with the rest of the organization.” --Diana Larsen, co-author, Agile Retrospectives © Ron Lichty 65
  65. 65. Managers and Agile • Removing Distractions and Impediments Be a damper to the noise. --Joe Kleinschmidt, CTO John Evans, Winchester, Hants, United Kingdom, www.thetippingpoint.co.uk © Ron Lichty 66
  66. 66. Capacity • Slack is critical to throughput – 100% capacity results in bottlenecks --photo (c) Bud Adams, SXC, www.aimpgh.com
  67. 67. How Do We Foster an Agile Culture? • Trust Our People • Empower Self-Organization & Excellence • Expect / Enable Truly Shared Leadership • Model, Defend, Evangelize Agile Values • Foster a Culture of Communication • Encourage Teamwork and Collaboration • Shield Teams from Politics & Distraction
  68. 68. Creating an Agile Culture • Establishing Culture © Ron Lichty 69 http://www.ManagingTheUnmanageable.net
  69. 69. Ron Lichty Consulting • Mentoring, coaching, training, consulting: – http://ronlichty.com, Ron@RonLichty.com • The book: Managing the Unmanageable: Rules, Tools & Insights for Managing Software People & Teams – http://ManagingTheUnmanageable.net <-----tools, excerpts, more rules of thumb • The study: The Study of Product Team Performance – http://ronlichty.com/study.html • Training: The Agile Manager Managing Software People and Teams Zero to Agile in Three Days © Ron Lichty 70

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