Agile @ Universities

Don’t you love it, when you’re sitting in a talk with a “this sounds vaguely interesting”-attitude and it turns out to be really inspiring? Happened to me at ALE 2011 with Bruce Scharlau‘s talk about “Agile at the University”. He presented the various ways, he teaches agile at Aberdeen and how all of us in …

Software Craftsmanship

A couple of days ago we talked about the Software Craftsmanship movement at work. I thought of the movement as an extension to the agile movement, that goes full circle to agile’s roots in software development, and focuses on practising coding skills. This is the Software Craftsmanship Manifesto: As aspiring Software Craftsmen we are raising …

Scrum Masters’ Occupational Hazards?

[Something light for the weekend (the sun is finally shining, yay!)] When taking notes on white boards or flip charts all day you’ll eventually lose grip on an uncapped marker: The marker stains  weren’t impressed by my washing machine. I guess that’s why they are called “dry-erase” markers and not “wet-washed”… Too bad, I liked …

Scrum Master Reading List – My Top 5

There is a mountain of agile books out there, all waiting to be read. On the one hand that’s exciting and something to look forward to. On the other hand that can be overwhelming and discouraging. The following is a demonstration of utmost self-restraint on my part: The 5 or less books that I recommend …

Ideal (scrum) team size

When we introduced scrum we followed the conventional wisdom of having cross-functional teams with 7+/-2 members. While I’m still sold on “cross-functional”, I wouldn’t follow the 7+/-2 advice anymore. I’ve observed 5 +/- 1 as the sweet spot (dev team only; SM and PO are additional members). The big advantage is that communication and coordination …

Wanted: (Agile) Coaching Circle

“Practice makes perfect” they say. I guess, self-reflection and reading can only get you so far. That’s why I’d like to join or found a coaching circle, i.e. a regular meeting (at least monthly) to safely try out new techniques and work through tough situations. Some ideas for activities: Have Agile Coaching Dojos Work through …

Scrum Master Creed

Two weeks ago I resigned as scrum master and will soon go back to just doing UX. Ironically I’m not resigning because I don’t care about agile anymore but rather that I care too much. .oO(Does that make sense to anyone but me?) Anyway, I’d like to share with you my vision of “scrum master-dom”, …

Eliminate Waste: Caretaker of the Week

Apparently I’m stuck on the topic of decisions, but whereas the last post was about manifesting decisions, this one is about avoiding them. Well, at least a certain kind of decisions: The kind where teams need to do something regularly, but it doesn’t matter which team member does it, as long as it gets done. …