The Power of Habit – Book Tip

When the insanely insightful Amy Hoy is smitten with a book, I read it. And “The Power of Habit” did not disappoint! It’s an entertaining journey through cases that helped scientists uncover how habits (and willpower) work and how you can change them. Understanding why and how our automatic actions play out is highly important, …

The Product Owner’s tasks according to the Dev Team

One of the questions that inspired Mail-Skills.com is: “What do you expect of a PO? What are her tasks?” As always, the answer is “It depends”. One major influence on what I expect from a PO is maturity. Not the PO’s, the Dev Team’s. A team that’s recently started using Scrum usually expects a user …

Be the Change you want to see

Yay, I’ll go back to work in January. I’ll return to my ex-ex-employer and it feels like going home. I’m looking forward to being part of a team again. I’m also a bit frightened, because I’ll be a web developer once again. Something I haven’t done full-time for 10+ years. It’s not going to be …

Join the Wall-Skills.com Advent Calendar!

Have you ever heard of “Testing on the Toilet“? I hadn’t until Roland presented it at the Düsseldorf Agile Meetup: Some Google testers wanted to improve the (automated) testing done across the company. That’s why they started to hang up tips for testing in the toilets for people to read in their “leisure” time. They exchange …

Body Language – “Fake it, till you become it”

You know that people smile when they are happy. Chances are, you also now that when you smile your mood lifts, i.e. you can change your state of mind by a physical act. It gets even better: You can raise your confidence and lower your stress levels by taking “power poses”, such as “wonder woman …

One-on-Ones in Agile (Transitions)

Have you ever had regular One-on-Ones (“O3s”)? If not, I think you’re missing out. Mark Horstman and Mike Auzenne describe them as: 30 minute conversation every (other) week Between a manager and one of her team members. (Each team member gets their own O3 each week.) Default time division: 10 minutes team members topics, 10 minutes …

Hyper-productive teams? Ruthlessly pruned backlog!

Most of the agile transitions I’ve had insight into were mandated by management. They were motivated by an ever-growing pile of requests that exceeds the developers’ capacity several times over. The tales of “hyper-productive teams” lead them to think Scrum and fast dev teams will solve all their problems. Clear problem (requests exceed capacity) -> …