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At Least Five Tips to Improve Your Geographically Distributed Agile Team


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Geographically distributed agile teams are here to stay. How do we make the most of our teams and keep our hair? In this interactive talk, I outlined more than five tips for teams to consider.

At Least Five Tips to Improve Your Geographically Distributed Agile Team

  1. 1. At Least FiveTips for ImprovingYour Geographically Distributed Agile Team Johanna Rothman New: ManageYour Job Search @johannarothman 781-641-4046
  2. 2. © 2014 Johanna Rothman Let’s Gather a Little Data How many of you are new to agile, less than two years in? How many of you are trying to do agile with a dispersed team? 2
  3. 3. © 2014 Johanna Rothman Johanna’s General Agile Picture 3
  4. 4. © 2014 Johanna Rothman Tip #1: Charter the Project Team creates the vision Team creates release criteria Team creates team norms Provides you a start on knowing the culture of the people on the team 4
  5. 5. © 2014 Johanna Rothman Problem: CreateTrustWhen Everyone is in a Different Place Travel to the same place! Builds respect Cheaper than you think “Wage cost is not the same as labor cost” Have you measured the value stream, cycle time, or cost to fix a defect? 5
  6. 6. © 2014 Johanna Rothman Tip #2: Build aTime Zone Chart When is everyone? Can we have standups? This time zone chart is from a real project Don’t do standups if everyone is going to fall asleep 6
  7. 7. © 2014 Johanna Rothman Tip #3: Create aVisual System that Works forThisTeam What kind of a board do you need? What will make it easy for people to show their work? How can people do their best work? Learn about the Cynefin framework 7 Obvious ComplicatedComplex Chaotic Known unknowns sense-analyse-respond Known knowns sense-categorise-respond Unknowable unknowns act-sense-respond Unknown unknowns probe-sense-respond
  8. 8. © 2014 Johanna Rothman CompareVisual Systems 8
  9. 9. © 2014 Johanna Rothman Tip #4: Power the Infrastructure Scrimping on licenses or power is crazy If everyone doesn’t have access to everything, you don’t have a project team 9
  10. 10. © 2014 Johanna Rothman Tip #5:WatchWhereYou Put People Where possible, put testers near developers because of feedback.You want feedback fast in an agile team If you can’t do that, what else can you do? 10
  11. 11. © 2014 Johanna Rothman Tip #6: KeepTeamsTogether Managers have to manage the project portfolio and not move people like chess pieces Even more critical in a distributed team where it takes so long to build trust 11
  12. 12. © 2014 Johanna Rothman References and Reading I have many readings on my site: Lessons Learned fromTeachingWorkshops About Geographically DistributedTeams Many Pragmatic Managers Blog posts on mpd Stay in touch? Pragmatic Manager: pragmaticmanager Please link with me on LinkedIn 12