Archive for the ‘Management’ Category.

Product Ownership…in a Public Sector environment

These are  the slides with synchronised audio of my presentation to the Public Sector Agile SIG based in the Midlands (UK). This was a day focused on the role of the Product Owner and I was asked to complement the more basic “what is a Product Owner” presentations with a “Product Owners in the real world” talk.

This is not a Scrum-only talk as it also includes mentions of Kanban, Agile PM and DSDM.

Any feedback, comments and suggestions will be greatly appreciated.

Review of the APMG Agile Project Management Practitioner Training

This article reviews the 4-day Agile Project Management Foundation & Practitioner Level training course certified by APMG International (@APMG_Inter) and based on DSDM Atern (@DSDM). The course I attended was organised by RADTAC (@RADTACLtd) and run by Julia Godwin. Julia is a very experienced trainer (profile) with a superb practical knowledge of DSDM, Agile Methods and Project Management. It is no wonder that she has managed to get a 100% pass record so far despite this being a rather demanding course.

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Agile Project Management: Levels of Intervention

One of the problems for an Agile PM is how much, or little, to intervene and when.

As an Agile transformation coach , all the initial emphasis is put on ensuring that PMs are not com­mand and control, not directive and behave like “good chickens” for their team. This is the standard starting point for an Agile PM managing a per­forming, adult team

However, if things are not going so well, it may be necessary for the PM to change behaviours. After all, the Agile PM is still responsible for delivering the project and managing the risks and issues. From an Agile point of view, this is ac­ceptable, but the level of intervention should be a graduated “ramping up” process, and it needs to be a temporary measure (although changing teams embedded bad behaviours can take some time). It is not a good idea to go straight in at Defcon 1 level.

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Turn your workplace policies into games

If you work for a com­pany of prac­tic­ally of any size and in any in­dustry, it is quite a cer­tainty that you will be ex­pec­ted to read and fol­low a con­sid­er­able num­ber of work­place policies (or man­age­ment de­crees). Many of those policies will have a very good reas­on to be in ex­ist­en­ce. It could be be­cause there are leg­al re­quire­ments that staff must meet in their job, or simply be­cause they re­flect good com­mon sense and best prac­tices.

However, with the rare ex­cep­tion, most of these policies are writ­ten in the most te­di­ous and un­friendly lan­guage pos­sible. The res­ult of­ten is that staff can re­main woe­fully un­aware of key as­pects of their role and un­pre­pared to take the cor­rect ac­tions when the time comes. Staff reg­u­larly see these policies as something neg­at­ive, re­strict­ive and, even, something that needs to be act­ively op­posed.

So, what do we of­ten do, as man­agers, when we real­ise that a policy is not work­ing? We re­write it mak­ing ex­actly the same mis­takes and we de­mand that all staff “read & un­der­stand” the policy. Surely, we are all aware the this is quite likely a point­less ex­er­cise doomed to fail­ure and wast­ing valu­able time (ours and our staff).

So, what can we do?

The Gami­fic­a­tion of the Work­place

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