Monday Morning Keynote - Joshua Kerievsky
Genuine agility is enormously effective in helping us achieve our dreams. The trouble is, Agile has grown into a complex tangle of roles and rituals, frameworks and tools, processes and certifications. We need a return to simplicity. Modern Agile is here to help.
Designed for people in many domains (not just IT), Modern Agile is defined by four guiding principles:
- Make People Awesome
- Make Safety a Prerequisite
- Experiment & Learn Rapidly
- Deliver Value Continuously
Understanding and deeply practicing these four principles will help you get better results faster.
In this talk I’ll share how these four principles power world-famous companies and how they can help you work with greater speed, simplicity, safety and success.
Joshua is the founder and CEO of Industrial Logic, a pioneering Modern Agile consultancy that improves the software development capabilities of organizations around the globe. In the mid-1990s, Joshua was among a small community of “lightweight methods” practitioners experimenting with better ways of developing software. Since then, he’s helped thousands of people across hundreds of organizations learn better ways of making software, carefully reviewing and revising methods with the greatest impact and return on investment. Today, he leads an effort to modernize Agile by focusing on timeless principles, removing outdated practices and leveraging the best of what the software community and other industries have learned about achieving awesome results. Joshua is an international speaker and author of the best-selling, Jolt Cola-award-winning book, Refactoring to Patterns, numerous Agile eLearning courses, and popular articles like Anzeneering, Sufficient Design and Stop Using Story Points. He’s active on many social media platforms and ModernAgile.org community.
Tuesday Lunch Keynote - Dean Leffingwell
Ten Essential Scaling Patterns We Can (Probably) All Agree On
It seems like everyone is scaling Agile these days. And why not? What enterprise wouldn’t want to enjoy the business and personal benefits of self-organization, higher quality and productivity, and the intrinsic motivation of effective Agile teams? It is the how that is the question, and on that there are many opinions. In this interactive tutorial, Dean Leffingwell describes the ten essential patterns for effectively implementing Lean-Agile development at enterprise scale. As part of the tutorial, attendees will be invited to rate the importance of each pattern, and privately rate how effectively your enterprise applies them
Widely recognized as a leading authority on software development, Dean Leffingwell is an author, serial entrepreneur, and methodologist. He is the creator of the Scaled Agile Framework, and author of numerous books on software development. The Framework, and his most recent books SAFe Reference Guide, Leading SAFe Live Lessons (Video), Agile Software Requirements, and Scaling Software Agility, form much of the basis of modern thinking on Lean-Agile software development at enterprise scale. He is currently Chief Methodologist at Scaled Agile, Inc., which he co-founded in 2011.
Tuesday Closing Keynote - Melissa Perri
The Build Trap
Are you building what your customers want, or are you just building? When successful companies first started out, they had to constantly deliver value to understand what their users wanted. This grew their business. Many large companies that have been around for decades, or even newer startups that have found some stability, fall into a dangerous place called “The Build Trap”. They continue building feature after feature, without stopping to validate it’s what customer truly want and need. This is due in part to poor understanding of Product Strategy, Product Management, and how to manage teams. Instead of focusing on the problems there, they search out “silver bullets” like Agile without understanding the brain behind the process. In order to get out of “The Build Trap”, businesses need to restructure their thinking to focus on finding value for the user to achieve business goals.
Melissa Perri is the founder of Produx Labs consulting group and Product Institute, a school for Product Managers. Working alongside product development teams around the world, Melissa helps them create strategies that satisfy users and drive business goals. She coaches Product Managers to answer two important questions – “Should we build this?” and “Why?” Her clients include Lloyds Bank of England, Spotify, Rovio, Valtech, Plated, Wayra UK, and Levo League, among others.
Melissa has been consulting with Produx Labs, training and coaching clients to build the right things since 2014. In early 2017 she started Product Institute, an online school to help educate Product Managers around the world to start building the right thing. At the moment she is finishing up her book with O’Reilly Media, “Escaping The Build Trap: How Effective Product Management Creates Custom Value”.
Agile Beyond Software Track
The Precarious State of Agile Marketing: A Report from the Trenches - Andrea Fryrear
A growing number of marketing teams are adopting Agile principles and methodologies to manage the growing complexity and technological sophistication of their work. But, overworked and unsure of how to proceed, many of them are cobbling together various ceremonies and concepts to create their own Frankenstein “methodologies” that often fail. This dispatch from the front lines of the agile marketing revolution calls on current agilists to support marketers in their transformation, and offers ways we can all work together for greater organizational agility.
Andrea is a Certified Scrum Master, Certified Scrum Product Owner, and an agile marketing evangelist who spends way too much time thinking about backlogs and WIP limits. She’s the founder and chief content officer for Fox Content, an agile content marketing consultancy. Andrea is the author of Death of a Marketer, an historically-informed argument for the adoption of agile marketing. The best part of her day is editing and writing for the online learning center, TheAgileMarketer.net.
Agile Everywhere - Cathy Hawley with Dan Corbin and Caroline Pearl
We will do a panel talk to describe how we introduced Agile practices to 80 non-technical teams in six months. We can share several lessons from our iterative journey, during which we guided a diverse range of teams to make their operating systems more Agile. We can also share the fundamentals of our process, including piloting with different team types, creating team-specific best practices, and training and supporting a facilitator within each team. Finally, we can explain how we structured the implementation team and operating system. We think our experience would be of interest to anyone curious about bringing agile practices to their non-technical teams… as well as anyone who already has and would like to compare notes.
Cathy Hawley, Presenter
Cathy has been at Return Path for 9 years and has helped the company grow and diversify, most recently focusing on building leadership and effective teams across the organization. She is passionate about people and believes that having a growth mindset and focus on development can lead to greatness in people and great business results.
Dan Corbin, Co-presenter
Dan is a Product Manager at ReturnPath and is a Certified Scrum Product Owner and Professional with over 15 years of product development, project management, and programming experience.
Caroline Pearl, Co-presenter
Caroline is a People Manager at ReturnPath and was instrumental in bringing data and analytics to the Performance team at ReturnPath.
Scrum Concepts Applied to Corporate Strategy - Chris Mundt
Each year most companies aspire to make foundational changes to increase profit, improve time to market, cut costs, etc. These changes typically take effort from individuals across disciplines and departments and they typically compete for time with all the other work required to run the business. By their nature they also cause disruption and in many cases, cynicism. How can Scrum concepts be leveraged to improve engagement, improve performance, and reduce barriers? I will walk through the reasons why Scrum is a natural fit for strategic work, the approach I’ve taken, and my results (including missteps and lessons-learned).
Chris Mundt works in the Denver area as an Agile Coach. He has led successful Agile transformations for four different companies – from difficult implementations involving 3rd parties and contracts to implementations that have struggled with executive support and cultural change. Chris is always looking for ways to improve engagement in the Agile journey as well as broaden the applications of Agile.
The Journey to Driving Breakthrough New Product Innovations at John Deere with Agile - George Tome
John Deere Enterprise Advanced Marketing’s Agile journey as told through a series of stories/examples. This presentation will focus on the integration of Agile, Lean, Best Practices, and Domain Tools to create an ever evolving framework called “XI”
- What doesn’t change when apply Agile to new domains
- Achievements in Agile at Deere
- Connecting people to Agile through “what they do”
- Insights on Agile outside of software
- Critical tools and practices for Agile outside of software
Success with XI has been written about in two HBR articles: Embracing Agile: How to Master the Process that is Transforming Management and Why John Deere Measures Employee Morale Every Two Weeks
George is a former USN hospital corpsmen, software developer, and traditional project manager. He is now an agile coach and champion for John Deere teams and programs. Among a long list of passions, he enjoys finding interesting ways of applying Scrum and Agile practices in different domains and unique situations.
Saved By Scrum: A 13 year old's view of Scrum At Home - Aaron Vadakkan with Manoj Vaddakan
Kids. Homework. Chores. Yelling. Are you having challenges at home? Have you heard about Scrum? Scrum is a process framework that helps teams work better together. In their presentation, Aaron and Manoj will talk about the benefits of using Scrum at home through their personal stories and experiences. You too can make your home fun and productive. You too can enroll and engage your kids to be part of their own upbringing. Join us to learn how we made our family happier and more productive!
Aaron Vadakkan, Presenter
Aaron Vadakkan is a 13-year-old who currently studies in 8th grade at Rocky Heights Middle School. He is also an expert on “Scrum at Home” which is the topic he will be presenting. He has presented this topic twice at two global gatherings in 2016. He had an early start with exposure to scrum, even from age 8, and he has been practicing it at home for about 4 years.
Manoj Vaddakan, Co-presenter
Manoj Vadakkan is a Scrum Trainer (CST) and Agile Consultant. Manoj has experience in helping companies adopting an Agile way of working at the team level and at the enterprise level. Manoj founded Agile DC, the premier DC-area Agile conference in the DC area. Manoj lives in Denver, Colorado with his family. More information at http://manoj.vadakkan.org
Leading Enterprise Transformation Track
Helping The Helpers: The Care & Feeding of your Scrum Masters - Melissa Boggs
“At times our own light goes out and is rekindled by a spark from another person.” -A.Schweitzer-
The servant leader ScrumMaster is a unique, often misunderstood, and sometimes lonely role. They are in a constant state of giving; relied upon as an energy source for their team. They ask powerful questions, give encouragement, and tackle tough problems on behalf of their team. This session is aimed at agile coaches and leaders who are in a position to help those helpers. What do they need to carry on serving?
Melissa Boggs is a Certified Scrum Professional, and an all around agile enthusiast. She began her personal agile transformation in 2010. She currently acts as an agile coach for a tech-ed company harnessing their agile instincts. She is fascinated with company cultures and how they inspire (or conversely, demotivate) individuals to become amazing.
Applying Agile: Lessons from USGS's National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) - Brian Fox
USGS’s NGTOC is responsible for the development, maintenance, and updating of the systems, data, and services that enable The National Map. Four years ago the NGTOC embarked on a journey to adopt Agile methods within their Systems Development Branch to ensure development activities can better support the Center and users of The National Map. This presentation will focus on my role as a leader in a government organization, how I helped facilitate this agile transformation, and what I learned along the way.
Brian Fox is currently the Systems Development Branch Chief for USGS’s National Geospatial Technical Operations Center (NGTOC) where he oversees development activity in support of The National Map. Prior to supporting NGTOC, Brian supported the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency in a variety of roles, including joint military assignments in the United States and overseas.
Transformation: Some Assembly Required - Christine Hudson with Eric Willeke
Lean, Agile, Digital, Two-speed, DevOps, Enterprise Accelerators, Lean Startup… where’s a change leader to start? Company leadership around the world recognizes the opportunities, and the urgency, in driving effective change and create room for rapid innovation in their organization, but we’ve learned that it’s unwise to “pick” a single model to follow. In this session, we use CA’s internal “agile” transformation as a backdrop to focus on the fallacy of believing that any one departmental transformation can be sustainably successful without increasing agility in the operational value stream as well. Creating sustaining agility requires bouncing back and forth between “systemic fix” and “deep value steam fix” perspectives.
Christine is an enterprise agility advisor for the internal agile transformation at CA Technologies (CA purchased local Rally Software). Christine has 15+ years experience in innovation and product strategy, specializing in organizational health and agility in software development and business. Christine is passionate about changing the world of work, to help companies and communities use customer-centric business systems (lean, agile, devops) to deliver triple bottom line value.
Eric Willeke, Co-presenter
Eric Willeke assists leaders at America’s biggest IT organizations with adopting new approaches and mindsets that optimize technology investments. His deep experience and expertise helps guide organizations through complex Agile transformation efforts, building capability to sustainably and successfully deliver on their business needs. His personal vision statement, “Helping everybody on a project sleep better at night” drives his passion for unleashing people to help organizations flourish.
Leadership Transformation: A personal journey and the 'V' word - Karyn Kagiyama
What happens when the qualities you most admire in great leaders are not what people experience with you? From early in her career where she proudly proclaimed “I never want to manage or lead people!”, to her first management role where she was asked to “pretend you’re just covering as if your boss is out on vacation”, and to her roles building and leading distributed teams around the world, hear what happened when Karyn discovered she was not the leader she thought she was and about her journey out of the depths of despair. Learn what standards and beliefs she held for herself that ultimately held her back from being the best leader and person she could be, and discover the wish of a former boss that forever changed Karyn as a person.
Karyn Kagiyama believes that small, “in the moment” interactions can have big impacts. Driven by her passion to help individuals and teams thrive, she embraces change and challenges as ways to connect, contribute, and grow. Her first job, working on the toughest customer escalations, instilled a commitment to “customers first” and ability to work across an organization to solve problems and deliver value. Her perspectives come from working in startups, large enterprises, and international roles.
How To Facilitate Leadership Participation, not just buy-in for an Agile transformation - Joseph Vallone
Are you frustrated with leadership wanting to delegate the Agile transformation and not getting involved? Come to this talk and learn about new ways to facilitate leadership engagement, not just buy-in. Learn how to form an Agile Leadership Scrum team, where leadership will understand they are responsible for the success or failure of an Agile transformation. There is something for every Agilist in this talk. Leaders will learn a new paradigm for engagement and understand how they can actively lead an Agile transformation. Agile coaches will learn how to build a significantly powerful guiding coalition. Agile team members will learn how to leverage leadership support to quickly resolve impediments and increase transparency.
Joe Vallone is an experienced Agile Coach, and Trainer at Scaled Agile Inc., and has been involved in the Lean and Agile communities since 2002. Joe Vallone is an effective leader and speaker with over 20 years of software development and coaching experience with certifications as a Certified Scrum Master (CSM), Certified Scrum Professional (CSP), and Certified SAFe Program Consultant Trainer (SPCT).
Organization, Culture, and Collaboration Track
Designing Great Workplaces for Freedom to Contribute - Dr. Paul Tolchinsky
Ignoring human potential can be very costly in more ways than one. Like many progressive companies today, you can design your organization so people can bring their whole selves to work. Startups can conscientiously design their workplace environment to embrace diverse intelligences and mindsets. Businesses of all sizes are called on to create a more humane workplace.
• How is organizational design different from Org. Development?
• What are the key principles for an organization designed to handle complexity? How do they operate?
• How do freedom-centric boss-less companies make decisions?
Join an organizational design expert, a Co-founder of a boss-less tech firm, and a leader in business innovation in dialogue.
Dr. Paul Tolchinsky, Presenter
Dr. Paul Tolchinsky consults for major public and private corporations around the world. He has extensive experience in managing and facilitating large system change efforts; new plant design and entrepreneurial start-ups; and redesigning and restructuring public and private organizations. Internationally known as a pioneer in the development of Whole-Scale (Whole System) Approaches to change, Paul works with leaders as they explore ways to mobilize, energize and invigorate their organizations.
Virtues of an Agile Coach: Group discovery workshop on your powerful (often silent) influence - Dhaval Panchal
Just as important as the “doing” part of agile coaching is the ” being” part. Agile coaching is more about who you are and what behaviors you model. The powerful (and often silent) influence you have because of who you are and how agile values shine through your every move should not be underestimated, it’s potent stuff. Through your being, you impose a long lasting impact on people , teams, organizations, much more so than applying a whole text book of agile techniques perfectly.
This workshop helps us identify the virtues that got us where we are and determine which to focus on and how to improve them over time so that we are best able to support our teams as coaches.
Dhaval Panchal, Presenter
Dhaval delivers world class Agile training & coaching that transforms my clients into rapid and highly efficient market leaders.
Dhaval works with CTOs and heads of software development, engineering, DevOps, data & project management to:
– Transform legacy waterfall approaches into efficient Agile processes
– Scale your Agile efforts to full enterprise level
– Train key team members to maximize Agile adoption
– Adopt practices to ensure sustainable momentum & long term success
Common Coaching Techniques and Answers We Keep Getting Wrong - Christen McLemore
How should teams use Spikes? Which sizing and estimating technique are we teaching? What about dedicated SMs or POs and tasking out stories during Sprint Planning? When there is more than one coach, we all give different advice. From the team’s perspective, they sometimes want options but they often just want a single “right” answer and are frustrated with different answers. In Christen’s talk, she will cover a few key areas where coaches disagree on the techniques and share some of her experience when working with multiple coaches that led to a common approach and consistent guidance. With examples and advice in this talk, you will have some common practice ideas to take back to the office and discuss with your fellow coaches.
While working in program management for AOL, Christen became a Certified Scrum Master (CSM). So sure that agile was that “special sauce” for building great teams, she offered a simple Scrum class to anyone who showed up. It wasn’t long before technology leaders noticed, and she was asked to integrate agile into AOL’s waterfall model. Christen strives to create the lightbulbs at the leadership level, and seeing those leaders start to promote change as a Transformation Consultant at CA.
Powerful Questions: How & How Not To Use Them - Lennie Noiles
According to the International Coach Federation Powerful Questioning along with Active Listening and Direct Communication completes the “effective communication” trifecta.
We will explore powerful questions including; what they are, how to (and not to) use them, and work with a system to maximize the “Power” of powerful questions.
Lennie is a results driven Leadership Coach, partnering with leaders to maximize their potential to achieve extraordinary results not previously obtainable. Lennie is also a Lego® Serious Play® Facilitator and an Agile Coach with over 12 years experience and a passion for Design Thinking. Lennie coaches clients to find the fire in their belly, igniting the passion to change their world. He works with organizations, teams, and individuals to maximize potential, improve performance, and increase motivation. He is passionate about helping others realize their potential, and sharing his knowledge in thought provoking consciousness-changing conversation.
Magic Without Tricks - Matt Perez
Fixed, pre-imposed hierarchies are a thing of the past. The future belongs to people working together in dynamic, adaptive, self-managed organizations. We can make this future happen sooner than later. From the start, we wanted to contribute more than simply writing code for clients. What started as a vague intention eventually developed into a freedom-centric, self-managed organization. For fun, we call it a DIYcracy. Everything that’s normally in the boss’ head had to be made explicit and known to all, including our revenue, costs, and even salaries. We had to come up with a lot of infrastructure: a decision matrix, dynamic leadership teams, self-managed assessments, etc. During our 10 years in operation, Nearsoft has grown 50%/year.
Matt has been building software products for over 30 years. In 2007 Matt co-founded Nearsoft, Inc, a successful software development company that helps its clients grow their software development teams with engineers in Mexico. After working in traditional hierarchical, fear-based organizations for many years, Matt got a chance to experiment with organizational freedom and self-management at Nearsoft. The experiment is going well and Nearsoft is very successful thanks to its culture.
Product Ownership Track
Don't Assume You're Creating Value - Prove It - Mathias Eifert
Does your organization find it hard to determine “the right thing” to build? You are not alone –Agile methods offer few guidelines on how to translate organizational goals and customer needs into the backlog’s content and priorities, so there is a significant risk that Agile teams end up building “the wrong thing right.”
Approaching product development as a series of hypotheses about customers’ behaviors and value perceptions allows us to expand the scope of Agile’s “inspect and adapt” feedback loops to systematically identify and validate critical assumptions about our product’s value proposition. We also discuss ways to derive testable assumptions to enable validated learning, as well as implications on project planning and budgeting.
Mathias Eifert has more than fifteen years of experience using Lean and Agile approaches to improve clients’ processes and build better products. As a Lean/Agile Coach for public and private sector organizations, Mathias helps clients discover the power of shortened feedback loops to manage uncertainty, optimize the customer experience, and maximize business value. He is particularly focused on coaching organizations to apply Agile and Lean principles to create their own best practices.
Lean Canvas Adapted for Internal Product Owners - Keith Klundt
Internal Product Owners need tools similar to those used for commercial software products. One of the most useful tools developed for POs is the Lean Canvas created by Ash Maurya. It’s a lightweight business case tool that helps focus a PO on a target audience and the problems they have. It guides product development efforts to a solution that addresses those problems, and sets up a Build-Measure-Learn approach consistent with Eric Ries’ Lean Startup principles. In this presentation, Keith will describe an adapted version of the Lean Canvas designed for internal POs. It gives them a valuable tool to engage stakeholders in a strategic discussion of product/project goals and expectations. It’s lightweight and Agile-friendly.
Keith has been a technology and product leader for over 15 years, and was an early Agile practitioner. He provides coaching and training to teams and leaders who want to improve outcomes by being Agile. Keith helps teams develop valuable artifacts, including End User Personas, Lean Canvas, User Story Maps, Product Visions and Roadmaps, that help them communicate with stakeholders at a strategic level. Keith is a Certified Scrum Professional, Product Owner and Agile Leader.
Continuous Backlog Refinement - Richard Lawrence
Painful backlog refinement meeting? Come learn why it shouldn’t be a meeting and what to do instead. Over the last 6 years, I’ve developed and tuned an approach with my clients for continuous backlog refinement. In this session, I’ll show how to structure the product backlog to have just the right level of detail at the right time, which makes it clear where the PO needs to emerge additional detail each day. I’ll explain when and how to have key conversations about what goes on the backlog, how to slice it, how big backlog items are, etc.
Richard Lawrence is co-owner of Agile For All. He trains and coaches teams and organizations to become happier and more productive, drawing on a diverse background in software development, engineering, anthropology, and political science. Richard is a Scrum Alliance Certified Enterprise Coach and Certified Scrum Trainer, as well as a certified trainer of the accelerated learning method, Training from the Back of the Room.
EventStorming - Collaborative Learning for Complex Domains - Paul Rayner
Developing software for complex & ever-changing business domains is challenging enough, but factor in the need to integrate with multiple legacy systems while working closely with business experts & it can feel a little overwhelming. In EventStorming developers & business experts use sticky notes to map out a story of how the software system behaves given a particular business problem to solve. This improves communication & collaboration, uncovers misunderstandings early, & accelerates deeper domain knowledge. Learn EventStorming rules, how to facilitate an EventStorming workshop, how it can help a team cultivate shared understanding & be more productive, & how it transitions to designing loosely-coupled, distributed, event-based systems.
Paul Rayner is one of the world’s leading Domain-Driven Design (DDD) experts. He is a developer, instructor, coach and popular conference speaker. He co-founded DDD Denver and is founder and chairman of the Explore DDD Conference (exploreddd.com). His company Virtual Genius LLC (www.virtualgenius.com), provides training and coaching in DDD for agile teams. Paul tweets with an Australian accent at @ThePaulRayner.
Build Better Backlogs Using Behavioral Design - Chris Shinkle
We make decisions every day driven by cognitive biases designed to save time and energy. These mental shortcuts serve us well. Marketers have used this knowledge to build successful marketing strategies for many years. This knowledge can also be used to build engaging products. Behavioral design provides a model for thinking about forming habits and motivating users. Identifying these user stories are critical to build lasting products. They link core user needs with business outcomes. These ideas drive products such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. In this talk, we’ll explore using behavioral design to build an engagement loop and better backlog. Iʼll share how to integrate these ideas into an Agile development process.
Chris Shinkle is the Director of Innovation at Software Engineering Professionals (SEP). Since 1997, Chris has been a thought leader and initiator of new ideas and continuous improvement. He introduced and led SEP’s adoption of Agile software development practices in 2004 as well as the adoption of Lean and Kanban in 2007. Chris’ dedication to Agile and Lean software systems led to his induction as an inaugural member of Lean Systems Society Fellowship and a 2012 Brickell Key Award nominee.
API Fundamentals - JoEllen Carter with Lisa Crispin
Applications increasingly talk to each other behind the scenes via APIs. Google’s recent acquisition of Apigee, an API management company, is an indicator of the continued importance of APIs. APIs are like building blocks, providing services and data that can be connected with other APIs to build powerful customized apps. However, developing and testing an API can be challenging because there is no built-in interface, breaking changes can cause widespread outages, sensitive data may be exposed or accessed, and accepted agile testing paradigms can be difficult to adapt to APIs. This session is an introduction to restful APIs and how to test them for security, performance, functionality, and backwards-compatibility risks.
JoEllen Carter, Presenter
For the last year, JoEllen has been immersed in testing several different APIs related to restaurant ordering and food delivery. Along the way, she has refined her approach to API testing to make sure the APIs are reliable, secure, performant, and backwards-compatible. In addition, JoEllen has more than twelve years of experience defining the role of tester on agile teams. She is a creative advocate of the value an experienced, collaborative tester brings to an agile team.
Lisa Crispin, Co-presenter
Mob Programming for Continuous Learning - Mike Clement
What if we took Extreme Programming and said it’s not “extreme” enough? What if we took pair programming and cranked it to 11? Mob programming is a technique with “all the brilliant people working on the same thing, at the same time, in the same space, and on the same computer.” I was lucky enough to be on a team for about year that worked “as a mob.” I’m also now leading a team that is mobbing full time and using mob programming for workshops and other learning experiences. Come learn what practices we found to be critical, what obstacles we encountered and what practices became irrelevant during our experience.
Mike Clement is a husband, father of four, and currently the Principal Software Craftsman and Co-founder of Greater Sum. Mike believes we work best when we are working together and that there are no best practices—only better and worse ones depending on the context. Passionate about agile technical excellence, Mike founded and organizes Software Craftsmanship Atlanta, Previous employers include Pluralsight, Ancestry.com and Microsoft.
Half a Third a Century Programming in Pairs - Jeff Langr
The practice you love to hate! It’s been more than 17 years since XP promoted pair programming as a collaborative practice, and it’s still here. Teams actually do this stuff! Out of the many practices associated with agile, pairing is easily the one that raises the most hackles. I’ve been building software and helping others build it for over a third century. For about half of this career, I’ve built software while working in a pair. During this time, I’ve built a love-hate relationship with the practice myself. (I am an introvert, you see. You might be one too.) Yet I firmly embrace its value. In this session, you’ll hear what makes for successful pairing, what benefits it brings, and the challenges it requires you to accept.
Jeff Langr has been professionally building software for over a third century. He is the author of five books on software development: Pragmatic Unit Testing in Java 8 with JUnit, Modern C++ Programming with Test-Driven Development, Agile in a Flash, Agile Java, and Essential Java Style. Jeff provides consulting and training services through his company, Langr Software Solutions, Inc. He lives in Colorado Springs.
We are Moving To Agile - What Are Our Testers Going To Do? - Pradeepa Naranyanaswamy
As more and more organizations transition to agile, many still do not understand how testing fits into agile teams. Does it simply mean placing a tester on every team? Or does it mean doing away with the role of testers? Pradeepa explains the importance of working in cross-functional teams that integrate development and testing. She shares her insights into the keys of agile testing including understanding the agile testing mindset and goals. She discusses the responsibilities of a tester in an agile team and describes the diverse skill sets required in those teams. Review these important basics and align your testing with concepts that may have been overlooked, forgotten, or misunderstood in your teams.
As a Life Coach and an Agile Coach, Pradeepa is a self-proclaimed “Agile Passionista” who strongly believes in agile values & principles to help organizations delight their customers. Pradeepa helps teams and leaders in understanding & aligning with their organizational vision and supports in their transformation journey. Through her Life coaching services, she is dedicated to serving successful professional women who wants more in life.
Infrustructure As Code - Jenkins Pipeline & Docker - Mark Waite
The Jenkins open source continuous integration server now provides a “pipeline” scripting language which can define jobs that persist across server restarts, can be stored in a source code repository and can be versioned with the source code they are building. By defining the build and deployment pipeline in source code, teams can take full control of their build and deployment steps. The Docker project provides lightweight containers and a system for defining and managing those containers. The Jenkins pipeline and Docker containers are a great combination to improve the portability, reliability, and consistency of your build process.
This session will demonstrate Jenkins and Docker in the journey from continuous integration to DevOps.
Mark leads a development team at CA Technologies in network and systems management. He’s a long-time Jenkins user and is the maintainer of the Jenkins git plugin. His first agile transformation in 2003 switched a small co-located team to Extreme Programming. His next agile experience was in scrum at a 5,000+ employee software company working across multiple time zones and teams. Now he’s at CA Technologies, working with local and remote teams.
Agile Fundamentals Track
Experiencing Agile - Tricia Broderick
Have you ever been skeptical about something until you tried it? That is a pretty common reaction, yet, we seem to forget this when we are leading others. Tricia Broderick says that most people attempt to lecture others or simply state things like “you’re now empowered”; yet, rarely get the intended results. Join Tricia to engage first-hand in the power of using exercises to experience a key value/message. Dissect and explore interactive exercises to gain insights into self-organization, empowerment, communication, wisdom of the crowd, vulnerability, and responding to change. Leave with higher expectations and tools for helping people directly experience the power behind Agile.
Passionately focused on the facilitation of high-performance software development environments, Tricia Broderick has more than twenty years of experience in software development. Her leadership, training, and coaching helped lay the groundwork to shift teams from one-year product cycles to daily delivery of high-quality software. Tricia shares vulnerable stories and practical examples to inspire people to reach new heights through continuous reflection and growth.
Agile Team Metrics - Measure Many Things - Andy Cleff
Velocity is one of the most commonly used – and abused – agile team metrics. Teams (and their stakeholders) often focus on “improving velocity” without either a proper consideration for root causes that impact velocity, or a holistic view.
Join Andy in an interactive discussion that explores how we can remove the perverse incentives and provide healthier ways for teams to gain meaningful insights on the outcomes of their experiments.
Andy is an experienced and pragmatic agile practitioner that takes teams beyond getting agile to embracing agile. His chief weapons are well asked questions, insightful retrospectives and an ability to withstand awkward silences. And if all else fails, beer.
The Agile Elephant in the Room - Mark Eastman
There are many excellent courses, books and videos that can help you learn Agile and Scrum, but they all tend to ignore some common challenges teams run into. For example, non-functional requirements. How should we deal with them? Technical stories are also a big challenge. Good luck finding concrete, unbiased information on the pros and cons of the different approaches. Forecasting is another great example. How do you estimate or forecast an entire project?
This session will cover a number of these “elephants” in the room and provide concrete and unbiased advise on how to deal with them. All recommendations are based on real-world experiences and will include an honest discussion of relevant pros and cons.
Mark has been an Enterprise level Agile Transformation Coach at both Lockheed Martin and Charles Schwab. Mark has trained and coached everything from single Scrum teams to very large multi-team programs and at all levels from individual team members to executives. Mark has been involved in Agile since the mid 90’s. He is also the founder of the Agile @ Scale Special Interest Group (SIG). Mark is currently certified in Scrum and SAFe.
Agile Methods and Data Warehousing: How To Deliver Faster - Kent Graziano
We all agree that data warehousing and business intelligence projects take too long to deliver tangible results. By the time a solution is in place, the business needs have changed. With all the talk about Agile development methods like SCRUM and Extreme Programming, the question arises as to how these approaches can be used to deliver data warehouse and business intelligence projects faster. This presentation will look at the 12 principles behind the Agile Manifesto and see how they might be applied in the context of a data warehouse project. The goal is to determine a method or methods to get a more rapid (2-4 weeks) delivery of portions of an enterprise data warehouse architecture. Real world examples with metrics will be discussed.
Kent Graziano is a Data Vault Master, Oracle ACE Director, former member of the Boulder BI Brain Trust (BBBT), expert data architect with over 30 years of experience. He is an internationally recognized expert in Data Modeling and Agile Data Warehousing. Kent has led many data warehouse teams, including multiple agile DW/BI teams. He has written numerous articles, authored three Kindle books, co-authored four books, and has given hundreds of presentations, nationally and internationally.
Utilizing Flow, Pull, and Kanban 'Thinking' - Frank Vega
You’ve heard of “Kanban” by now, or heard someone say they’ve “switched to kanban”, or “tried kanban” and it didn’t work. If you’ve said these yourself or you’re just starting to learn about flow, pull, and kanban concepts, this is a “don’t miss session” for you! We’ll first review three meanings of the term “kanban”, and identify two misconceptions of what “kanban” is and isn’t. Then expand on what “pull” means and identify a fundamental element that different pull systems share. We’ll then look at ways to introduce principles of flow, pull, and kanban in your current workflow process. Practices that have been used in real-world contexts with teams just starting their agile journeys and experienced teams looking to continue improving.
Frank has 30+ years IT/IS experience, 20 in software development in various roles, including assisting teams with applying lean-agile processes and practices. In 2007 he began using the Kanban Method and now utilizes this experience to coach others to optimize and evolve their processes and practices using kanban/pull methods. Frank collaborates with leading global kanban practitioners, contributing back to agile and lean communities via conferences, and local user groups. (www.vissinc.com)