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Agile Team Games


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During Agile Australia 2010, I teamed up with Phil Abernathy to present a variety of different team exercises and games. The session starts quite gently and builds up pace culminating in the Ball Point Game right at the very end.

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Agile Team Games

  1. 1. Agile Team Games Phil Abernathy & Kane Mar Agile Australia 2010
  2. 2. Yes, but ... Yes, and 2
  3. 3. Yes, but ... Yes, and » Purpose: Explore the Art of the Possible » Instructions: • Form groups of 5 • Plan a party, starting each new sentence with the words “Yes, but ...” (2 minutes) • Plan a party, starting each new sentence with the words “Yes, and ...” (2 minutes) 3
  4. 4. Balloon game instructions » Pre draw a balloon with a face on it » Sit approx 10 per table » Ask them to deliver as many balloons as they can in 5 min like the pre drawn one » Start 5 min count down » Draw up chart for team scores » Test rigorously and reject balloons that do not meet spec » Update scores » Talk about TDD ( 5min) » Redo exercise » Update scores ( should be better) » Reflect and close out
  5. 5. TDD – Test Driven Development » Elaborate with acceptance criteria » Write test cases » Build a test harness » Write the (automated) test scripts » Build the deliverable » Run the deliverable through the test harness and against the test scripts to see if it passes » If YES – Yippppeee » If NO – fix and re-try
  6. 6. Help me see it 6
  7. 7. Help me see it » Purpose: Explore communication and collaboration » Instructions: • Form 1 large circle • By going around the circle, create a fictional character • If you don’t find the fictional character credible then you can challenge by saying “Help me see it” • The next 2 persons must help 7
  8. 8. The Ball Point Game 8
  9. 9. The Ball Point Game » Purpose: Demonstrate the power of inspection and adaption using a fun, physical game. 9
  10. 10. The Ball Point Game » Rules • You are all one big team • Each ball must have air-time • You cannot pass a ball to someone directly to your left or right • The end point must also be the start point • Dropped balls are considered waste • Each Iteration = 2 minutes • Retrospective = 1 minute 10
  11. 11. The Ball Point Game » “Inspect and Adapt” in Scrum ... is a Deming* cycle (PDCA) ref: PDCA » PLAN: Design or revise business process components to improve results » DO: Implement the plan and measure its performance » CHECK: Assess the measurements and report the results to decision makers » ACT: Decide on changes needed to improve the process 11
  12. 12. Flow game instructions » One pre built boat » Lots of A4 paper and red and blue marker pens » Sit them in long rows of 7 per team ( rest can be consultants per team) » Assign roles ( biz, analyst, architect, developerx2, tester, business) » Ask them to deliver as many boats as they can in 5 min like the pre built one. » They get 3 points per pair of blue and red boats, -1 per page not completed » Start 5 min count down » Draw up chart for team scores » Update scores » Talk about Pull and Flow( 5min) » Redo exercise – consultants can give advice » Update scores ( should be better) » Reflect and close out
  13. 13. Theory of constraints Every organization has at any given point in time at least one constraint which limits the system's performance relative to its goal Dr. Eliyahu M. Goldratt You can only deliver as fast as the slowest part of your process
  14. 14. Increasing Throughput Managing the Little’s Law Reduce on-ramp work in progress Work in progress = Total cycle time Avg completion rate Removing constraints Increase completion Don’t overburden rate
  15. 15. Lets apply some learning » Some LEAN principles • Identify bottlenecks and optimise • Manage the on-ramp • Eliminate waste • Pull and flow • Inspect and improve » Some AGILE principles • Collaborate • Co-locate • Self organising teams • Testing, testing testing
  16. 16. Thank you 16