Stop Replacing Trust with Process – The Path to Lasting Change

Does it seem you spend more time talking about the work than actually doing the work? Do you find it takes longer and longer to deliver anything of value to the customer? Did someone just create a new phase gate or process that you need to follow? If you answered yes to any of these,

3 Keys for Innovation: Why Lean Startup Isn’t Enough

Innovators have a new dilemma. While it is cheaper than ever to achieve problem/solution fit, the rate of change makes it expensive and difficult to maintain product/market fit. Companies need to do more than just apply Lean Startup concepts, they need a holistic focus on three key areas: 1. Lean Startup 2. Business Model Innovation

Rise of the Lean Executive

“No institution can possibly survive if it needs geniuses or supermen to manage it.” – Peter Drucker Drucker has passed on, but fortunately for us his ideas have not. Corporate executives are turning to books like The Lean Startup for ideas on how to keep their organizations relevant. (I know because I see the growing

Product Owners: Are You Solving Real Problems?

I’ve seen this look too many times from product owners as of late. As organizations shift from can we build it to should we build it, the future of Scrum hangs in the balance. Scrum, as it is practiced today, is still too focused on delivery. Today we task product owners with activities such as:

Teams Need Business Models, Not Business Plans

I don’t read a lot of fiction, but when I do, it’s a 100+ page business plan attached to a 5-year spreadsheet with numbers that all go up and to the right. As a result, the business plan has unfortunately become the main character in success theater. It’s rarely read and understood by executives, but

The Enterprise Build-Measure-Learn Network

Build -> Measure -> Learn loops are often broken in large organizations, mostly due to the fact that functional silos do not enable validated learning. These functional silos, coupled with large batch builds, often result in measurements being conducted on an ad hoc basis in isolation without context. Networks Enable Validated Learning If you do

Agile Coaching Tip: What Is an Empathy Map?

An empathy map is a collaborative tool teams can use to gain a deeper insight into their customers. Much like a user persona, an empathy map can represent a group of users, such as a customer segment. The empathy map was originally created by Dave Gray and has been gaining popularity with the agile community.

Should You TDD Your MVP?

Should you use Test Driven Development when creating your Minimum Viable Product? At first glance, it seems like quite the conundrum. Agile engineering principles strive for a test first approach, but if I don’t know who my customer is how can I determine what the quality should be? My current line of thinking is this:

Agile Coaching Tip: Faces of Power in the Organization

The lines between political science and organizational culture continue to blur. Those who venture into organizations need to become well versed in the dynamics of power. One such explanation of these dynamics is Steven Lukes’ the “Three Faces of Power”. Three Faces of Power 1. Decision Making – The power to make and implement decisions