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Good Agile / Bad Agile
Proving the value of Agile
to a skeptical organization
Alan Albert
marketfit.com
alan@marketfit.com
linkedin.com/in/alanalbert
@a_albert
A story of failure
[ mine ]
From this… To this…
Greater functionality
More configurable
Easier to learn and use
Faster
School board: New multi-million $ software
delays start of school year across metro area
DAILY NEWS
Costs and duration of delay unknown
“ You're going on an apology tour! ”
Bugs? No
Missing features? No
Slow performance? No
Hard to use? No
Bugs?
Missing features?
Slow performance?
Hard to use?
Discovering
where we went wrong
What I learned…
sparked a journey that led me here today
Who are we?
• Who is personally doing Agile (in some form)?
• Whose organization wants you to become Agile?
• Whose organization is currently Agile? Waterfall? Both?
• Who wants their organization to become Agile?
• What is your role?
Software engineer? Product Owner? Scrum Master?
Product Manager? Agile Coach? Manager or Exec?
Good Agile / Bad Agile
Proving the value of Agile
to a skeptical organization
Proving the value of Agile
to a skeptical organization
Good Agile / Bad AgileGood Agile / Bad Agile
Proving the value of Agile
to a skeptical organization
Proving the value of Agile
to a skeptical organization
Proving the value of Agile
to a skeptical organization
Proving the value of Agile
to a skeptical organization
Good Agile / Bad Agile
Good Agile / Bad Agile
Proving the value of Agile
to a skeptical organization
Why are organizations skeptical of Agile?
?
You say you want a revolution?
From US Dept. of Defense
Defense Innovation Board
DIB Guide: Detecting Agile BS
Oct 09, 2018
Much of the time, it can look like we’re off course
Really? Image Credit: Henrik Kniberg
More reasons to be skeptical
When asked, many agile teams can’t accurately
commit to…
• What the end product will look like
• How full-featured it will be
• When it will be done
• How much it will cost to build
Most agile teams will admit…
• We expect to fail along the way
Sh*t anti-agile people say
• “Agile development doesn’t fit in our Waterfall organization”
• “With Agile, we can’t make commitments to customers”
• “When they say they’re an agile shop, I assume
they have no structured development process at all”
Good Agile / Bad Agile
Proving the value of Agile
to a skeptical organization
How do we know Agile when we see it?
?
What is Agile?
Agile modeling
Agile unified process (AUP)
Disciplined agile delivery
Dynamic systems development method (DSDM)
Extreme programming (XP)
Feature-driven development (FDD)
Lean software development
Rapid application development (RAD)
Adaptive software development (ASD)
Lean startup
Kanban
Scrum
Scrumban
Crystal
SAFe
12 Principles of the Agile Manifesto
1. Our highest priority is to satisfy the customer through early and continuous delivery of valuable software.
2. Welcome changing requirements, even late in development. Agile processes harness change for the customer's
competitive advantage.
3. Deliver working software frequently, from a couple of weeks to a couple of months, with a preference to the shorter
timescale.
4. Business people and developers must work together daily throughout the project.
5. Build projects around motivated individuals. Give them the environment and support they need, and trust them to get
the job done.
6. The most efficient and effective method of conveying information to and within a development team is face-to-face
conversation.
7. Working software is the primary measure of progress.
8. Agile processes promote sustainable development. The sponsors, developers, and users should be able to maintain a
constant pace indefinitely.
9. Continuous attention to technical excellence and good design enhances agility.
10. Simplicity--the art of maximizing the amount of work not done--is essential.
11. The best architectures, requirements, and designs emerge from self-organizing teams.
12. At regular intervals, the team reflects on how to become more effective, then tunes and adjusts its behavior accordingly.
What is Agile?
It doesn’t matter how we define our development process.
If it actually is valuable, we should be able to prove it.
Good Agile / Bad Agile
Proving the value of Agile
to a skeptical organization
38%
63%
77%
What % of new products fail?
>80%
$29.5 billion spent creating features that aren’t used
Fail
What % of new products fail?
No improvement after shift from Waterfall to Agile
If our current best practices are so good,
why is our failure rate so high? 
Admitting the problem
How do we know bad Agile when we see it?
?
Waterfall
Discover
Design
Develop
Test
Release
Learning comes too late
Release
Pseudo agile (incremental waterfall)
Discover
Design
Develop
Test
Learning still comes too late
Agile
What are we
learning here?
Changing the Product to Find a Fit
CUSTOMERS
?
PRODUCT
x
x
!
Convincing the Market to Want our Product
CUSTOMERS
?
PRODUCT
$
Why build before we measure?
Why sprint before we know the right direction?
Why fail fast?
Why not focus on succeeding sooner?
B2B Products & Services
B2C Products & Services
Not for Profit
Startups
SMB
Fortune 500
Cognitive Psychology
Computer Science
Fail
Why listen to Alan?
QA & Support
Marketing
Manufacturing
Partnerships
Legal
Product
Marketing
Software Development
Strategy
Board of Advisors
Board of Directors
Board Chair
CEO
$1B
Contributor
User Researcher
UX Designer
Product Designer
Product Manager
Software Engineer
Company Lead V.P. Corporate
Co-Founder
Acquirer
Acquired
Discovering the value
of multiple perspectives
Speed of data entry!
We never looked at things
from her perspective.
Bugs? No
Missing features? No
Slow performance? No
Hard to use? No
Bugs?
Missing features?
Slow performance?
Hard to use?
Discovering
where we went wrong
We didn’t know what our
customers really cared about
We thought we knew
Thinking we knew
got in the way of learning
What did I learn?
Would you rather…
prove you’re right
be proven wrong
learn something new
Choose carefully…
prove you’re right
be proven wrong
learn something new
It gets harder to
or try too hard to not
If you try too hard to
Good Agile / Bad Agile
Proving the value of Agile
to a skeptical organization
What is Value?
?
What is Value?
What something is worth in an exchange
What is Value?
What something is worth in an exchange
as perceived by the recipient
Value Beauty≈
What is Value?
Perception of value
Recipient’s values
Where does value come from?
motivations
goals
concerns
emotions
what people care about
the “whys” that drive people’s decisions
What are values?
Introducing 

Customer Perception of Value
Customer Values =

motivations
goals
concerns
emotions
what people care about
the “why” that makes them buy
Values spark emotions & drive decisions
Buying
Usage
Retention
Recommendation
Examples of Customer Values
Minimizing costs
Increasing revenue
Reducing risks
Gaining confidence
Making friends
Protecting privacy
Environmentally friendly
Socially conscious
Rapid deployment
Minimizing disruption
Global presence
Local office
Convenience
Wide selection
Low price
PRODUCT
VALUES
FEATURES
BENEFITS
PRODUCT
FEATURES
BENEFITS
VALUES
PRODUCT
VALUES
FEATURES
BENEFITS
PRODUCT
VALUES
FEATURES
BENEFITS
Start
Here
Or
Here
People with different values
choose different products
People with different values
react differently to the same product
People who share
the same perception of what’s most valuable
New definition of Market Segment:
Segment by customer values to increase value
Adding features often reduces value
More features does not mean more value
You can create value by
amplifying the shared top values
Competition, Fitness, Recognition
Energy, Stamina
Unified data, Controlled access
Performance, Ecology
Interoperability, Efficiency
Make me look good, Find my next job
Peloton
Red Bull
Slack
Tesla
Zapier
LinkedIn
Coke Zero
Netflix
Salesforce
Slack
Calories
Paying for unwatched movies
Installation fees, lengthy implementations
Unmanageable inboxes, CC hell
Or you can create value by
minimizing shared negative values
No EvidenceNo TaxiNo Hotel
Disruptive innovations omit “essential” features
to deliver exceptional value
No Horse
No keyboard No Engine
≠ Customer perception of valueYour perception of value
Whose Perception of Value?
Good Agile / Bad Agile
Proving the value of Agile
to a skeptical organization
What do we mean by proof?
?
What is proof?
Working definition:
Evidence that compels others
to accept an assertion as true
What is proof of value?
Demonstrating worth, according to their values
How could we prove the value of Agile?
?
Proving value
Effort
Definition Amount of exertion
Measures Team
Example Overtime hours
Timing Immediate
Proof? No
Proving value
Outputs
Definition Quantity of work
Measures Product
Example Velocity points
Timing Lagging
Proof? No
12 Principles of the Agile Manifesto
1. Our highest priority is to satisfy the customer through early and continuous delivery of valuable software.
2. Welcome changing requirements, even late in development. Agile processes harness change for the customer's
competitive advantage.
3. Deliver working software frequently, from a couple of weeks to a couple of months, with a preference to the shorter
timescale.
4. Business people and developers must work together daily throughout the project.
5. Build projects around motivated individuals. Give them the environment and support they need, and trust them to get
the job done.
6. The most efficient and effective method of conveying information to and within a development team is face-to-face
conversation.
7. Working software is the primary measure of progress.
8. Agile processes promote sustainable development. The sponsors, developers, and users should be able to maintain a
constant pace indefinitely.
9. Continuous attention to technical excellence and good design enhances agility.
10. Simplicity--the art of maximizing the amount of work not done--is essential.
11. The best architectures, requirements, and designs emerge from self-organizing teams.
12. At regular intervals, the team reflects on how to become more effective, then tunes and adjusts its behavior accordingly.
Measuring Outputs
“Concentrate on
what will produce results
rather than on the results,
the process rather than the prize.”
Proving value
Inputs
Definition Quality of effort
Measures Team
Example Team health check results
Timing Leading
Proof? No
Proving value
Outcomes
Definition Impact on business
Measures Business
Example KPIs, OKRs
Timing Lagging Late
Proof? Yes
Proving value
Effort Outputs Inputs Outcomes
Definition
Amount 

of exertion
Quantity 

of work
Quality 

of effort
Impact 

on business
Measures Team Product Team Business
Example
Overtime

hours
Velocity 

points
Team health check
results
KPIs, 

OKRs
Timing Immediate Lagging Leading Lagging Late
Proof? No No No Yes
Identifying the problem
We don’t know whether our effort, inputs or outputs are
going to deliver the desired outcomes
until it’s too late
How can we prove the value of agile?
An observation:
We can only prove the value of agile, if it is valuable
Is there a better way?
Effort Outputs Inputs Outcomes
Definition
Amount 

of exertion
Quantity 

of work
Quality 

of effort
Impact 

on business
Measures Team Product Team Business
Example
Overtime

hours
Velocity 

points
Team health check
results
KPIs, 

OKRs
Timing Immediate Lagging Leading Lagging Late
Proof? No No No Yes
Is there a leading indicator
that can prove we’re on the path to delivering value?
Good Agile / Bad Agile
Proving the value of Agile
to a skeptical organization
How do we know good Agile when we see it?
?
1. Our highest priority is to satisfy the customer
through early and continuous delivery of valuable
software.
2. Welcome changing requirements, even late in
development. Agile processes harness change for
the customer’s competitive advantage.
Agile Manifesto: 12 Principles
Three laws of Agile
• Law of the Customer—an obsession with delivering
value to customers as the be-all and end-all of the organization.
• Law of the Small Team—a presumption that all work be carried out
by small self -organizing teams, working in short cycles and focused
on delivering value to customers
• Law of the Network—a continuing effort to obliterate bureaucracy
and top-down hierarchy so that the firm operates as an interacting
network of teams, all focused on working together to deliver
increasing value to customers
Credit: Steve Denning, Forbes, Sept 2019
How do we know good Agile when we see it?
Agile is good only if it delivers value to customers
So how can we best deliver value to customers?
?
Customer values are discoverable.
Knowing customer values can prevent
catastrophic failure. Why skip this step?
• Software developers not talking to users
• Meeting requirements more important than getting
something useful to the field quickly
• Stakeholders acting “more-or-less autonomously”
(e.g. it’s not my job)
• Manual processes are tolerated in situations when
automation is possible
US DoD flags for detecting ‘Agile BS’
Credit: Steve Denning, Forbes, Sept 2019
Why not just ask “what are your values?”
To discover customer values,
we don’t need to show anything
We won't learn more about customers by asking them later
Learning from customers
What Your

Customer 

Cares About
Your Idea 

or 

Solution
What your customer
will talk about
What you
won’t learn
Discover ➔ Measure ➔ Validate
Interviewing for Customer Perception of Value
Ask them to describe their behaviour in your chosen context
What did they actually do in that context?
Ask only about the past — not the present or future
Then ask about their thinking at that time
What led them to do the things that they did?
How did they go about making their decision?
Don’t ask about features. Focus on learning how they decided.
Customer Perception of Value Mini-Workshop
1. Ask your neighbour to name a considered purchase they made recently
Focus only on how they decided what to buy, not on after they bought
2. Then ask them to describe their buying behaviour in detail, start to finish
What did they actually do, to make the choice?
Ask only about the past — not the present or future
3. And then ask about their thinking at that time
What led them to do the things that they did?
How did they go about evaluating and arriving at their final decision?
Your insights into Perception of Value
The next time you talk to a customer, try
not mentioning your idea, product or feature at all.
Discover your Customers’ Values
CUSTOMER
PERCEPTION OF
VALUE
UNDERSTANDING
OF VALUE
and gain competitive advantages
Design to Match Your Customers’ Values
CUSTOMER
PERCEPTION OF
VALUE
UNDERSTANDING
OF VALUE
PRICING
MARKETING
INNOVATING
UNDERSTANDING
OF VALUE
Avoid Designing for Everyone’s Values
CUSTOMER
PERCEPTION OF
VALUE
Adding features not valued
can reduce CPV
CUSTOMER
VALUES
PRODUCT
VALUES
PRODUCT
- MARKET
FIT
Designing for Product-Market Fit
MARKETING
“PROMISE OF
VALUE”
Proving value
Value
Definition Perception of worth
Measures Customers & Stakeholders
Example Speed of data entry
Timing Leading & Lagging
Proof? Yes
Ways to demonstrate value
Effort Outputs Inputs Outcomes Value
Definition
Amount of
exertion
Quantity of
work
Quality of effort
Impact on
business
Perception 

of worth
Example
Overtime 

hours
Velocity
points
Team health
check results
KPIs, 

OKRs
Speed of 

data entry
Measures Team Product Team Business
Customers &
Stakeholders
Timing Immediate Lagging Leading Lagging Late
Leading & 

Lagging
Proof? No No No Yes Yes
Customer Values tell us…
• Where to head
• Why head there
• Where to focus to get there
• How to measure progress all along the way
When facing multiple stakeholders and competing priorities,
how can teams consistently deliver value?
?
Diversity
Alignment
Expertise
Which is most important on teams?
Facts vs. Opinions
Customer values in decision making
The customer is always right
about their perception of value
Diversity vs. Alignment
Diversity brings differing perspectives that add value
Alignment enables us to work together efficiently
To create value efficiently, we must
reconcile the conflict between diversity and alignment
Reconciling diverse opinions
Understanding Customer Perception of Value
helps bring diversity into alignment
The ROI from Understanding Values
More customers
More revenue
Greater customer retention
More referrals
Lower risk of failure
Fewer features
Lower cost of development
Faster delivery of greater value
Cost Savings
Revenue
Profit
Market Share
Customer Perception of Value as North Star
Good Agile / Bad Agile
Proving the value of Agile
to a skeptical organization
Alan Albert
marketfit.com
alan@marketfit.com
linkedin.com/in/alanalbert
@a_albert

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Good agile / Bad agile: Proving the value of Agile to a skeptical organization

  • 1. Good Agile / Bad Agile Proving the value of Agile to a skeptical organization Alan Albert marketfit.com alan@marketfit.com linkedin.com/in/alanalbert @a_albert
  • 2. A story of failure [ mine ]
  • 3. From this… To this… Greater functionality More configurable Easier to learn and use Faster
  • 4. School board: New multi-million $ software delays start of school year across metro area DAILY NEWS Costs and duration of delay unknown
  • 5. “ You're going on an apology tour! ”
  • 6. Bugs? No Missing features? No Slow performance? No Hard to use? No Bugs? Missing features? Slow performance? Hard to use? Discovering where we went wrong
  • 7. What I learned… sparked a journey that led me here today
  • 8. Who are we? • Who is personally doing Agile (in some form)? • Whose organization wants you to become Agile? • Whose organization is currently Agile? Waterfall? Both? • Who wants their organization to become Agile? • What is your role? Software engineer? Product Owner? Scrum Master? Product Manager? Agile Coach? Manager or Exec?
  • 9. Good Agile / Bad Agile Proving the value of Agile to a skeptical organization
  • 10. Proving the value of Agile to a skeptical organization Good Agile / Bad AgileGood Agile / Bad Agile Proving the value of Agile to a skeptical organization Proving the value of Agile to a skeptical organization Proving the value of Agile to a skeptical organization Proving the value of Agile to a skeptical organization Good Agile / Bad Agile
  • 11. Good Agile / Bad Agile Proving the value of Agile to a skeptical organization
  • 12. Why are organizations skeptical of Agile? ?
  • 13.
  • 14. You say you want a revolution?
  • 15.
  • 16. From US Dept. of Defense Defense Innovation Board DIB Guide: Detecting Agile BS Oct 09, 2018
  • 17.
  • 18. Much of the time, it can look like we’re off course Really? Image Credit: Henrik Kniberg
  • 19. More reasons to be skeptical When asked, many agile teams can’t accurately commit to… • What the end product will look like • How full-featured it will be • When it will be done • How much it will cost to build Most agile teams will admit… • We expect to fail along the way
  • 20. Sh*t anti-agile people say • “Agile development doesn’t fit in our Waterfall organization” • “With Agile, we can’t make commitments to customers” • “When they say they’re an agile shop, I assume they have no structured development process at all”
  • 21. Good Agile / Bad Agile Proving the value of Agile to a skeptical organization
  • 22. How do we know Agile when we see it? ?
  • 23. What is Agile? Agile modeling Agile unified process (AUP) Disciplined agile delivery Dynamic systems development method (DSDM) Extreme programming (XP) Feature-driven development (FDD) Lean software development Rapid application development (RAD) Adaptive software development (ASD) Lean startup Kanban Scrum Scrumban Crystal SAFe
  • 24. 12 Principles of the Agile Manifesto 1. Our highest priority is to satisfy the customer through early and continuous delivery of valuable software. 2. Welcome changing requirements, even late in development. Agile processes harness change for the customer's competitive advantage. 3. Deliver working software frequently, from a couple of weeks to a couple of months, with a preference to the shorter timescale. 4. Business people and developers must work together daily throughout the project. 5. Build projects around motivated individuals. Give them the environment and support they need, and trust them to get the job done. 6. The most efficient and effective method of conveying information to and within a development team is face-to-face conversation. 7. Working software is the primary measure of progress. 8. Agile processes promote sustainable development. The sponsors, developers, and users should be able to maintain a constant pace indefinitely. 9. Continuous attention to technical excellence and good design enhances agility. 10. Simplicity--the art of maximizing the amount of work not done--is essential. 11. The best architectures, requirements, and designs emerge from self-organizing teams. 12. At regular intervals, the team reflects on how to become more effective, then tunes and adjusts its behavior accordingly.
  • 25. What is Agile? It doesn’t matter how we define our development process. If it actually is valuable, we should be able to prove it.
  • 26. Good Agile / Bad Agile Proving the value of Agile to a skeptical organization
  • 27. 38% 63% 77% What % of new products fail?
  • 28. >80% $29.5 billion spent creating features that aren’t used Fail What % of new products fail? No improvement after shift from Waterfall to Agile
  • 29. If our current best practices are so good, why is our failure rate so high?  Admitting the problem
  • 30. How do we know bad Agile when we see it? ?
  • 32. Release Pseudo agile (incremental waterfall) Discover Design Develop Test Learning still comes too late
  • 34. Changing the Product to Find a Fit CUSTOMERS ? PRODUCT x x
  • 35. ! Convincing the Market to Want our Product CUSTOMERS ? PRODUCT $
  • 36. Why build before we measure?
  • 37. Why sprint before we know the right direction?
  • 38. Why fail fast? Why not focus on succeeding sooner?
  • 39. B2B Products & Services B2C Products & Services Not for Profit Startups SMB Fortune 500 Cognitive Psychology Computer Science Fail Why listen to Alan? QA & Support Marketing Manufacturing Partnerships Legal Product Marketing Software Development Strategy Board of Advisors Board of Directors Board Chair CEO $1B Contributor User Researcher UX Designer Product Designer Product Manager Software Engineer Company Lead V.P. Corporate Co-Founder Acquirer Acquired
  • 40. Discovering the value of multiple perspectives
  • 41. Speed of data entry! We never looked at things from her perspective. Bugs? No Missing features? No Slow performance? No Hard to use? No Bugs? Missing features? Slow performance? Hard to use? Discovering where we went wrong
  • 42. We didn’t know what our customers really cared about We thought we knew Thinking we knew got in the way of learning What did I learn?
  • 43. Would you rather… prove you’re right be proven wrong learn something new
  • 44. Choose carefully… prove you’re right be proven wrong learn something new It gets harder to or try too hard to not If you try too hard to
  • 45. Good Agile / Bad Agile Proving the value of Agile to a skeptical organization
  • 47. What is Value? What something is worth in an exchange
  • 48. What is Value? What something is worth in an exchange as perceived by the recipient
  • 50. Perception of value Recipient’s values Where does value come from?
  • 51. motivations goals concerns emotions what people care about the “whys” that drive people’s decisions What are values?
  • 53. Customer Values = motivations goals concerns emotions what people care about the “why” that makes them buy
  • 54. Values spark emotions & drive decisions Buying Usage Retention Recommendation
  • 55. Examples of Customer Values Minimizing costs Increasing revenue Reducing risks Gaining confidence Making friends Protecting privacy Environmentally friendly Socially conscious Rapid deployment Minimizing disruption Global presence Local office Convenience Wide selection Low price
  • 59. People with different values react differently to the same product
  • 60. People who share the same perception of what’s most valuable New definition of Market Segment:
  • 61.
  • 62. Segment by customer values to increase value
  • 63. Adding features often reduces value More features does not mean more value
  • 64. You can create value by amplifying the shared top values Competition, Fitness, Recognition Energy, Stamina Unified data, Controlled access Performance, Ecology Interoperability, Efficiency Make me look good, Find my next job Peloton Red Bull Slack Tesla Zapier LinkedIn
  • 65. Coke Zero Netflix Salesforce Slack Calories Paying for unwatched movies Installation fees, lengthy implementations Unmanageable inboxes, CC hell Or you can create value by minimizing shared negative values
  • 66. No EvidenceNo TaxiNo Hotel Disruptive innovations omit “essential” features to deliver exceptional value No Horse No keyboard No Engine
  • 67. ≠ Customer perception of valueYour perception of value Whose Perception of Value?
  • 68. Good Agile / Bad Agile Proving the value of Agile to a skeptical organization
  • 69. What do we mean by proof? ?
  • 70. What is proof? Working definition: Evidence that compels others to accept an assertion as true
  • 71. What is proof of value? Demonstrating worth, according to their values
  • 72. How could we prove the value of Agile? ?
  • 73. Proving value Effort Definition Amount of exertion Measures Team Example Overtime hours Timing Immediate Proof? No
  • 74. Proving value Outputs Definition Quantity of work Measures Product Example Velocity points Timing Lagging Proof? No
  • 75. 12 Principles of the Agile Manifesto 1. Our highest priority is to satisfy the customer through early and continuous delivery of valuable software. 2. Welcome changing requirements, even late in development. Agile processes harness change for the customer's competitive advantage. 3. Deliver working software frequently, from a couple of weeks to a couple of months, with a preference to the shorter timescale. 4. Business people and developers must work together daily throughout the project. 5. Build projects around motivated individuals. Give them the environment and support they need, and trust them to get the job done. 6. The most efficient and effective method of conveying information to and within a development team is face-to-face conversation. 7. Working software is the primary measure of progress. 8. Agile processes promote sustainable development. The sponsors, developers, and users should be able to maintain a constant pace indefinitely. 9. Continuous attention to technical excellence and good design enhances agility. 10. Simplicity--the art of maximizing the amount of work not done--is essential. 11. The best architectures, requirements, and designs emerge from self-organizing teams. 12. At regular intervals, the team reflects on how to become more effective, then tunes and adjusts its behavior accordingly. Measuring Outputs
  • 76. “Concentrate on what will produce results rather than on the results, the process rather than the prize.”
  • 77. Proving value Inputs Definition Quality of effort Measures Team Example Team health check results Timing Leading Proof? No
  • 78. Proving value Outcomes Definition Impact on business Measures Business Example KPIs, OKRs Timing Lagging Late Proof? Yes
  • 79. Proving value Effort Outputs Inputs Outcomes Definition Amount 
 of exertion Quantity 
 of work Quality 
 of effort Impact 
 on business Measures Team Product Team Business Example Overtime
 hours Velocity 
 points Team health check results KPIs, 
 OKRs Timing Immediate Lagging Leading Lagging Late Proof? No No No Yes
  • 80. Identifying the problem We don’t know whether our effort, inputs or outputs are going to deliver the desired outcomes until it’s too late
  • 81. How can we prove the value of agile? An observation: We can only prove the value of agile, if it is valuable
  • 82. Is there a better way? Effort Outputs Inputs Outcomes Definition Amount 
 of exertion Quantity 
 of work Quality 
 of effort Impact 
 on business Measures Team Product Team Business Example Overtime
 hours Velocity 
 points Team health check results KPIs, 
 OKRs Timing Immediate Lagging Leading Lagging Late Proof? No No No Yes Is there a leading indicator that can prove we’re on the path to delivering value?
  • 83. Good Agile / Bad Agile Proving the value of Agile to a skeptical organization
  • 84. How do we know good Agile when we see it? ?
  • 85. 1. Our highest priority is to satisfy the customer through early and continuous delivery of valuable software. 2. Welcome changing requirements, even late in development. Agile processes harness change for the customer’s competitive advantage. Agile Manifesto: 12 Principles
  • 86. Three laws of Agile • Law of the Customer—an obsession with delivering value to customers as the be-all and end-all of the organization. • Law of the Small Team—a presumption that all work be carried out by small self -organizing teams, working in short cycles and focused on delivering value to customers • Law of the Network—a continuing effort to obliterate bureaucracy and top-down hierarchy so that the firm operates as an interacting network of teams, all focused on working together to deliver increasing value to customers Credit: Steve Denning, Forbes, Sept 2019
  • 87. How do we know good Agile when we see it? Agile is good only if it delivers value to customers
  • 88. So how can we best deliver value to customers? ?
  • 89. Customer values are discoverable. Knowing customer values can prevent catastrophic failure. Why skip this step?
  • 90. • Software developers not talking to users • Meeting requirements more important than getting something useful to the field quickly • Stakeholders acting “more-or-less autonomously” (e.g. it’s not my job) • Manual processes are tolerated in situations when automation is possible US DoD flags for detecting ‘Agile BS’ Credit: Steve Denning, Forbes, Sept 2019
  • 91. Why not just ask “what are your values?”
  • 92. To discover customer values, we don’t need to show anything We won't learn more about customers by asking them later
  • 93. Learning from customers What Your
 Customer 
 Cares About Your Idea 
 or 
 Solution What your customer will talk about What you won’t learn
  • 94. Discover ➔ Measure ➔ Validate
  • 95. Interviewing for Customer Perception of Value Ask them to describe their behaviour in your chosen context What did they actually do in that context? Ask only about the past — not the present or future Then ask about their thinking at that time What led them to do the things that they did? How did they go about making their decision? Don’t ask about features. Focus on learning how they decided.
  • 96. Customer Perception of Value Mini-Workshop 1. Ask your neighbour to name a considered purchase they made recently Focus only on how they decided what to buy, not on after they bought 2. Then ask them to describe their buying behaviour in detail, start to finish What did they actually do, to make the choice? Ask only about the past — not the present or future 3. And then ask about their thinking at that time What led them to do the things that they did? How did they go about evaluating and arriving at their final decision?
  • 97. Your insights into Perception of Value
  • 98. The next time you talk to a customer, try not mentioning your idea, product or feature at all.
  • 99. Discover your Customers’ Values CUSTOMER PERCEPTION OF VALUE UNDERSTANDING OF VALUE
  • 100. and gain competitive advantages Design to Match Your Customers’ Values CUSTOMER PERCEPTION OF VALUE UNDERSTANDING OF VALUE PRICING MARKETING INNOVATING
  • 101. UNDERSTANDING OF VALUE Avoid Designing for Everyone’s Values CUSTOMER PERCEPTION OF VALUE Adding features not valued can reduce CPV
  • 102. CUSTOMER VALUES PRODUCT VALUES PRODUCT - MARKET FIT Designing for Product-Market Fit MARKETING “PROMISE OF VALUE”
  • 103. Proving value Value Definition Perception of worth Measures Customers & Stakeholders Example Speed of data entry Timing Leading & Lagging Proof? Yes
  • 104. Ways to demonstrate value Effort Outputs Inputs Outcomes Value Definition Amount of exertion Quantity of work Quality of effort Impact on business Perception 
 of worth Example Overtime 
 hours Velocity points Team health check results KPIs, 
 OKRs Speed of 
 data entry Measures Team Product Team Business Customers & Stakeholders Timing Immediate Lagging Leading Lagging Late Leading & 
 Lagging Proof? No No No Yes Yes
  • 105. Customer Values tell us… • Where to head • Why head there • Where to focus to get there • How to measure progress all along the way
  • 106. When facing multiple stakeholders and competing priorities, how can teams consistently deliver value? ?
  • 109. Customer values in decision making The customer is always right about their perception of value
  • 110. Diversity vs. Alignment Diversity brings differing perspectives that add value Alignment enables us to work together efficiently To create value efficiently, we must reconcile the conflict between diversity and alignment
  • 111. Reconciling diverse opinions Understanding Customer Perception of Value helps bring diversity into alignment
  • 112. The ROI from Understanding Values More customers More revenue Greater customer retention More referrals Lower risk of failure Fewer features Lower cost of development Faster delivery of greater value Cost Savings Revenue Profit Market Share
  • 113. Customer Perception of Value as North Star
  • 114. Good Agile / Bad Agile Proving the value of Agile to a skeptical organization Alan Albert marketfit.com alan@marketfit.com linkedin.com/in/alanalbert @a_albert