Previous Meeting of Agile/Connecticut, 08/12/2008:

The State of the Art in Scrum: Trip Report from “Scrum 201” in NYC

REGISTER for the AUGUST 12 Meeting

NOTE: meeting is August 12
…to accommodate attendance at Agile2008 in Toronto August 4-8.

Topics:
Advanced Scrum:
3 Roles,
3 Ceremonies,
3 Artifacts,
3 Best Practices

A trip report on advanced Scrum training from Dr. Jeff Sutherland

Meeting Agenda:
6:00 PM: Trip Report on this class PART 01—key takeaways per bullets below.
6:45 PM: Break and Informal Networking
7:00 PM: Trip Report on this class PART 02—NOKIA TEST in detail. Dr. Sutherland presented a ‘balanced scorecard’ to rate your NOKIA TEST compliance. Come to this meeting to take it and walk away knowing how you– and your Scrum implementation– ACTUALLY rate !

7:30 PM: Exercise (The XP game). This is an excellent, FUN group-level game for learning Agile. This highly interactive group-game is very close to actual Agile/Scrum practice and experience, and comes directly from the course. It takes about 1/2 an hour and is enormously fun and entertaining. See the XP game described here. Believe when I tell you, this is a very FUN group-level Agile game.

8:00 PM: Summary and Conclusion

Dr. Jeff Sutherland taught this class. He is the co-creator of Scrum and continues to strongly advance the work. One area is the NOKIA TEST: a simple test and scorecard that tells you if you are doing Scrum. Learn more about THE NOKIA TEST here:

THE NOKIA TEST VIDEO WITH DR. JEFF SUTHERLAND

Presenter: Dan Mezick

I recently attended an advanced 2-day Scrum class taught by Dr. Jeff Sutherland, the co-creator of Scrum. The course was attended by 10 very experienced Scrum-practitioners.

The class answered every advanced, practical question I had about running Scrums, and generated many NEW questions. This class also had some FANTASTIC exercises.

Here is the link to the actual class description:
Agile 201: A Practicum for those who want to win with Scrum

For the August 12 2008 meeting of the APLN Connecticut, I am providing a trip report review and reiteration of my key content takeaways from this excellent class taught by the co-creator of Scrum.

I’ll be working from some of the actual slides from the class.

This presentation, at the APLN Connecticut Chapter, includes a subset of the following topics from that class, in a 1.5 hour summary format:

  • Scrum adoption: phases, players and levers
  • The goals of Scrum
  • Starting a Scrum Team
  • Building the Product Backlog and initial Estimating and Planning
  • Developing better Product Owners and better Business collaboration
  • Review of values and first principles
  • First Few Iterations — best practices in Release Planning, Sprint Planning, Daily Scrum, Sprint Work, Sprint Review, Retrospectives
  • Developing better team flow; moving the definition of Done
  • Use of Release and Sprint Burndown Charts
  • Other metrics related to Scrum Teams
  • Release Planning during the life of the effort
  • Impediments Management: Identifying, prioritizing and acting on Impediments (again and again)
  • When Push comes to Shove
  • Better Engineering Practices
  • Business Value and the integration of Scrum with the Business side of the firm
  • The problem of getting the coder to know what the end-customers really want, and only provide the top value features
  • “Ba”: Why, what and how?
  • More Useful Information Radiators
  • The winning spirit of a Scrum Team
  • Developing better Teams and better ScrumMasters and better Product Owners
  • How much is a ScrumMaster worth? How much is a Product Owner worth?
  • Selling Scrum: Why, when, where, and how
  • Better applications of the Scrum of Scrums concept
  • Where do Managers and Stakeholders fit in?
  • Moving from 2x improvement to 10x improvement
  • Spreading Scrum throughout the organization
  • Scrum center: why it matters and how to return there
  • Leadership and “Making It Happen Now”; Patience
  • Scaling Scrum
  • Scrum and legacy systems
  • The problems of Success
  • Success stories from imperfect companies
  • Scrum and… (Six Sigma, CMMI, XP, RUP, Lean, ITIL, COBIT, SARBOX, Offshoring, Distributed Teams, etc.)
  • Addressing risk (in its several flavors) and risk management
  • Scrum: Riding your Character and Emotions to victory
  • When will I be done learning Scrum?

Presenter: Dan Mezick

Meeting Agenda:
6:00 PM: Trip Report on this class PART 01—key takeaways per bullets below.
6:45 PM: Break and Informal Networking
7:00 PM: Trip Report on this class PART 02—NOKIA TEST in detail

7:30 PM: Exercise (The XP game). This is an excellent, FUN group-level game for learning Agile. This highly interactive group-game is very close to actual Agile/Scrum practice and experience, and comes directly from the course. It takes about 1/2 an hour and is enormously fun and entertaining. See the XP game described here. Believe when I tell you, this is a very FUN group-level Agile game.

8:00 PM: Summary and Conclusion

Dr. Jeff Sutherland taught this class. He is the co-creator of Scrum and continues to strongly advance the work. One area is the NOKIA TEST: a simple test and scorecard that tells you if you are doing Scrum. Learn more about THE NOKIA TEST here:

THE NOKIA TEST VIDEO WITH DR. JEFF SUTHERLAND

About the Speaker- Dan Mezick
A Scrum Coach and a certified Scrum Master, Dan is the leader of the APLN Connecticut Chapter. He is an invited speaker at Agile2007 and Agile2008 and is currently delivering Scrum coaching to some of the largest insurance companies in the world. In addition to Scrum coaching and education, his company New Technology Solutions delivers hands-on Visual Studio, C#, and ASP.NET training. Learn more at Dan’s Scrum Coaching page. Contact Dan at dan.mezick[at]newtechusa(.com)

REGISTER for the AUGUST 12 Meeting

June 02 Meeting: Dan Mezick on BOUNDARY, AUTHORITY, ROLE & TASK: SCRUM’s SECRET SAUCE (Meeting Venue: MICROSOFT FARMINGTON, 6:30PM)

MEETING VENUE: MICROSOFT offices in FARMINGTON CT. REGISTER NOW for this meeting

DIRECTIONS TO MICROSOFT FARMINGTON.

TUESDAY MAY 05 2009, 630PM to 830PM

DAN MEZICK ON “BOUNDARY, AUTHORITY, ROLE and TASK: SCRUM’s SECRET SAUCE”

Dan Mezick is a CT-based Agile/Scrum coach, the organizer and leader of Agile/CT and Agile/Boston.

For 2009, Dan is the organizer of the ‘Manifesting Agility’ Stage of the Agile2009 conference held in Chicago August 24-27.

Presentation: DAN MEZICK ON: “BOUNDARY, AUTHORITY, ROLE and TASK: SCRUM’s SECRET SAUCE”

Clear definitions of Role, Task and Authority are essential when people assemble to do work. Unclear definitions of these items leads to all sorts of waste. Scrum’s very clear Roles and associated Tasks and Authority are a big part of what makes actually Scrum ‘tick’.

A Boundaries ‘collection’ is an attribute of the Role, Task and Authority ‘objects’. This session deconstructs Role, Task & Authority in terms of associated Boundaries. Note that boundaries can come in many forms, including: boundaries of time, boundaries in terms of access to resources, etc.

Attend this session to learn about succeeding at group-level process improvement. When groups of people have trouble executing on work, the root cause is often related to definitions of Role, Task, Authority, and associated Boundaries. When definitions are clear, there is little ambiguity. When definitions are clear, there is potentially no waste generated from the need to discover these definitions and related Boundaries. Scrum is superb at boundary definitions and boundary management.

Well defined BART is required to reach the hyper-productive state at the group (“system”) level. BART analysis is a tool for discovering solvable problems related to Role, Authority, Task and Boundary. Note that Role, Authority, and Task each have, as an attribute, one or more Boundary objects. Much more of this kind of detail, on BART, is the focus of the 45-minute talk.

AGENDA

05 Minutes on background of development of BART analysis

35 Minutes of quick pace through key points above, with Q&A every step of the way, no waiting for Q&A at end

05 Wrap it up with Summary and links to more resources
Learning outcomes

Exit with tools to do your own BART (Boundary, Authority, Role and Task) analysis on any group-level situation

Experience your current projects in a whole new way via BART

Gain insight into how well-defined Roles, Tasks, Authority and associated Boundaries deeply influence resulting efficiency and quality

Discover the ‘secret sauce’ of Scrum’s success in organizing work

Apply a whole new, CLEAR way to thinking …. about your group-level problem-solving issues back home

MEETING AGENDA:

6:30 PM: AGILE ORIENTATION: Scrum as described by Dan Mezick of New Technology Solutions

7:00 PM: Food and networking time.

7:15 PM: MAIN EVENT: BOUNDARY, AUTHORITY ROLE AND TASK with Dan Mezick

8:25 PM: SUMMARY AND CONCLUSION OF MEETING

MEETING VENUE: MICROSOFT FARMINGTON. REGISTER HERE for this meeting

NOTE: Please do not register casually. If you register, make a commitment to attend.

DO NOT register casually for this meeting, as you do us a big disservice to us by distorting the actual count for the seating and food. Registration is an explicit commitment to attend.

If you register and then, for some reason cannot attend, notify us by email. We need this info to execute on a good meeting. You help ALOT by a) registering with a real intent to attend and b) informing us if and when you cannot make it for some reason.

Please help us deliver a great meeting by complying with these simple ground rules.

DIRECTIONS TO MICROSOFT FARMINGTON.

MEETING VENUE: MICROSOFT FARMINGTON. REGISTER HERE for this meeting

March 25 Meeting: Amr Elssamadisy on Effective Agile Adoptions (Meeting Venue: MICROSOFT WALTHAM, 6:30PM)

MEETING VENUE: MICROSOFT offices in WALTHAM. REGISTER NOW for this meeting

DIRECTIONS TO MICROSOFT WALTHAM.

WEDNESDAY MARCH 25 2009, 630PM to 830PM

AMR ELSSAMADISY ON EFFECTIVE AGILE ADOPTIONS

Amr Elssamadisy is the author of Patterns of Agile Practice Adoption: The Technical Cluster, and Agile Adoption Patterns: A Roadmap to Organizational Success.

He is the editor in chief of the Agile Journal, an editor for the AgileQ at InfoQ, and a frequent presenter at software development conferences.

Presentation: AMR ELSSAMADISY ON EFFECTIVE AGILE ADOPTIONS

There are many failed or ineffective teams practicing ‘Agile’. Being Agile is not the goal.

Building better software is.

Your needs and environment are different than many others, so the Agile practices that will give you the most bang for your buck are different also. Join us to get an introduction to incremental techniques to start an Agile adoption strategy tailored to your environment.

You will walk away with more clarity of the questions you must ask, and answer, to tailor your adoption and create a candidate set of practices based on your organization’s context.

You exit this session with these take-aways:

o All Agile practices are not created equal – different practices address different business values.
o Practices are not independent, you will get an overview of the different dependencies among Agile practices.
o Everyone will leave having crafted at least one potential adoption strategy.
o An understanding of why context matters. Why context is everything. Why context can make the difference between “we suck less” and “we rock!”

One of Amr’s books: Agile Adoption Patterns: A Roadmap to Organizational Success

Amr is editor-in-chief of the authoritative publication, Agile Journal:

MEETING AGENDA:

6:30 PM: AGILE ORIENTATION: Scrum as described by Dan Mezick of New Technology Solutions

7:00 PM: Food and networking time. (NOTE: We hear the feedback on water, diet drinks, and more food choices.)

7:15 PM: MAIN EVENT: EFFECTIVE AGILE ADOPTIONS with Amr Elssamadisy

8:25 PM: SUMMARY AND CONCLUSION OF MEETING

MEETING VENUE: MICROSOFT WALTHAM. REGISTER HERE for this meeting

NOTE: Please do not register casually. If you register, make a commitment to attend.

DO NOT register casually for this meeting, as you do us a big disservice to us by distorting the actual count for the seating and food. Registration is an explicit commitment to attend.

If you register and then, for some reason cannot attend, notify us by email. We need this info to execute on a good meeting. You help ALOT by a) registering with a real intent to attend and b) informing us if and when you cannot make it for some reason.

Please help us deliver a great meeting by complying with these simple ground rules.

DIRECTIONS TO MICROSOFT WALTHAM.

How to Become a Sponsor of Agile Connecticut

Sponsorship of our meetings gets your organization exposure in front of our members.

Agile CT members are keenly interested in agile practices and are busy actually implementing Scrum and agile in the workplace.

A high percentage of the members have real decision-making authority in their IT organizations.

Typical meeting attendance is in the range of 30 to 70 members.

A representative from sponsor Rally Software, addressing a meeting.

Scrum and agile is beginning to cross over, and penetrate into non-IT projects and business decision-making. Scrum and agile are in fact emerging as highly effective management methods.

If you want to get in front of this audience, you can get involved immediately by taking up the role of Sponsor.

Benefits

1. Home Page Ad Banner. We provide direct home page position of your banner image and web page link. NOTE: The Agile Connecticut (CT) web is visited by over 600 unique visitors per month, and this number is growing. You get immediate exposure as members visit the site for meeting details and logistics each month.

2. Direct Exposure at every Meeting. Our average meeting is 40+ attending and we peak at about 80 which is the max that the room can hold. We provide you with a brief opportunity to explain your brand in front of the entire room at each meeting. During this time your logo is prominently displayed as the backdrop to your message.

3. Meeting’s FEATURED Sponsor. As a Sponsor, you get exposed to the membership at each and every meeting. Sponsorship is offered in a package of 3 meetings. For one of those meetings, you are the Featured Sponsor. You get a full five minutes to deliver your marketing message in the Ignite presentation format. This format is 5 minutes with 20 slides that each last 15 seconds each. Ignite is a very focused and compact format that allows you cram an enormous amount of content in your 5-minute talk. The Ignite format is required for delivering your 5 minutes as a Featured Sponsor of that meting.

4. SEO Link. The site has excellent Google ‘page rank’. This is a measure of web authority which Google assigns to a web site. We work with you to make sure the link from Agile Connecticut (CT) to your site results in SEO (search engine optimization) equity. This means the link actually moves you UP in Google’s search results. This helps you get found when anyone searches on phrases you intend to get found on via Google.

3. Email exposure. We send out 3 emails a month in the form of meeting reminders etc. We include mention of your company, resulting in more recognition of your brand in the Hartford/CT agile and Scrum community.

4. Branded marketing email. We send ONE email from you to every member on the member list when you sponsor the minimum 3 meetings. We send this out before the 3rd meeting, allowing you the opportunity to circulate with the membership after this email goes out. In this way, you can time your total marketing campaign with the scheduled Agile CT sponsorship leverage.

5. Direct Exposure at every Meeting. Our average meeting is 70+ attending and we peak at about 145 which is the max that the room can hold. We provide you with a brief opportunity to explain your brand in front of the entire room. During this time your logo is prominently displayed as the backdrop to your message.

Summary of Sponsorship Benefits:

ONE exclusive email marketing message (delivering your message only)

ONE ‘FEATURED SPONSOR’ meeting with 5-minute Ignite-format presentation

Exposure at each and every meeting in your package

SEO link to your web site, optimized to improve your Google rank

Agile Connecticut (CT) home page banner ad

Costs

The minimum sponsor package is 3 meetings. We offer discounts when you commit to 6 or 12 months of meetings. Call for pricing.

Ground Rules

1. Banner ads are positioned according to current sponsor rank. Your banner is appended to the list of current sponsors. As old sponsors choose not to renew, they lose their place, and you move up.

2. You do not have exclusivity in your business domain area. For example, several Scrum trainers may choose to sponsor Agile Connecticut (CT). We accomodate them. If you are willing to pay a premium to be the exclusive sponsor in a given business domain, contact us (below) to explore that in more detail.

Details:

Logo size: Please provide a logo that is 214 X 104 pixels in size, JPG format.

For emails: We send ONE email with just your marketing message and no other messaging from us or other sponsors. To enable this, you send us a WORD doc and we paste that into the email we send as HTML. To prepare, you format your message in WORD 2000 format and paste it into a FireFox email and send it to yourself… to be sure of how it looks. When you are satisfied with how it looks, you send the DOC to us with the date-of-send details, and we mail it for you.

Contact Us to discuss Agile Connecticut (CT) sponsorship opportunities.

Near-Term Schedule of Meetings and Events & Key Dates

Here are some near-term dates and topics planned for the APLN CT Chapter.

All meetings are on the 1st Tuesday of the month and start at 6PM unless otherwise noted:

June 02 2009

Amr Elssamidisy, Agile book author and editor of Agile Journal, on:

EFFECTIVE AGILE ADOPTIONS: June 02 Meeting Details

July 07 2009

Michael de la Maza, MA-based Agile & Scrum Coach, Scrum Master, on:

UNDERSTANDING AGILE via AGILE GAMES

July 07 Meeting Details

August 04 2009

Dan Mezick, CT-based Agile & Scrum Coach, Scrum Master, and speaker from Agile2007, Agile2008 and Agile2009, on:

BOUNDARY, AUTHORITY, ROLE AND TASK: SCRUM’s SECRET SAUCE

August 04 Meeting Details

News and Events of Interest to Agile/Connecticut Members:

August 16 2008: The Connecticut DotNet Users Group is holding the 1st annual CODECAMP event in Bloomfield, CT (a Saturday). This event is a FREE, community-driven, all-day event for developers. Speakers are local or regional developers. Topics are based on community interest. Sessions are original and feature a heavy technical focus.

APLN-CT organizer Dan Mezick is scheduled to speak on Visual Studio/.NET 3.5 topics including Advanced Object-Oriented Techniques, Language Integrated Query, Reflection with Attributes, and of course the main event is: the presentation of Scrum Best Practices. Learn more at the CTDOTNET.ORG web site.

May 05 2008: The Agile2008 conference leadership has invited APLN leader Dan Mezick to present his original research on The Hidden Life of Groups at the Agile 2008 Conference to be held in Toronto August 4-8. The session is scheduled for the Breaking Acts stage of the Conference. See the session abstract here.

April 16 2008: SNEC-PMI (Southern New England Connecticut Project Management Institute) is having Dan Mezick speak on: The Agile Revolution. Sign up at snec-pmi.org. See the session abstract here.

About Dan Mezick

Thank you for your attention !!

Follow Dan on twitter (@DanMezick)

Send Dan an email at dan.mezick [at] newtechusa[dot][com].

Dan Mezick, up closer.

The following is some background information on Dan Mezick:

Associations & Certifications

Member, Scrum Alliance. Certified Scrum Master (CSP). See Dan Mezick’s Scrum Alliance profile here

Member, Agile Alliance. See Dan Mezick’s Agile Alliance profile (circa 2009) here.

Member, Agile Project Leader’s Network.

Member, Project Management Institute. Active in the MassBay chapter and Southern CT chapter. Serving (in 2009) as a Programs committee member, authorized to identify and engage speakers for SNEC-PMI’s monthly meetings. (see www.snec-pmi.org)

Member, USA Hockey. Certified Level 3 Hockey Coach. (See also: PCT Framework, under Personal Interests section below)

Agile Conference sessions

Agile2009 session: BART Analysis Applied (Boundary, Authority Role and Task)

Agile2009 session: Group Relations and Social Systems

Agile2008 session: The Hidden Life of Groups

Agile2007 session: Agile and Entreprenuerial Thinking Patterns. Here is a link to the Agile training grades from Agile2007. People seemed to like this session.

Agile Community Volunteer Work

Organizer, Agile Boston user group, since 2007

Organizer, Agile CT user group, since 2007

[Manifesting Agility] Stage producer, Agile Alliance Agile2009 Conference, 2009

Published Books, Articles and Papers

Article: May 11 2009, Agile Journal: Scrum and SVO-p (Subject-verb-object, present tense)

Article: August 18 2003, COMPUTERWORLD: Outsourcing 2.0: Collaborative Development

Book: April 1999, Visual Basic BOOTCAMP Certification Exam Guide, McGraw Hill

Blog Posts and Other Written Works

Post: April 22 2009: Entrainment, a key to how Scrum works

Post: April 15 2009: Attraction and Repulsion: Scrums Immune System

Post: April 27 2009: BART: Boundary, Authority Role & Task as Related to Scrum

Post: August 11 2007: Inattentional Blindness: an Obstacle to Agile

Web article: May 11 2009: MegaScrum: A Scrum Structure for Massively Distributed, non-IT, All-Volunteer Efforts

Web article: April 2001: Enter Late and Dominate: Mezick’s Theorem of Open Source

…..Web article Addendum: Mezick’s Theorem Addendum page

…..Web article Summary: Responses Around the Web to the Theorem, plus Q&A

…..Interesting responses: Quick Google list of “here and now” responses around the web

Patents Awarded; Other Achievements

Patent: Property setting manager for objects and controls of a graphical user interface

Patent number: 5872974
Filing date: Apr 19, 1995
Issue date: Feb 16, 1999

Business Entreprenuership Award: Deliotte and Touche FAST50 Award for 2002. Recognized again for leading one of the top 50 fastest growing technology firms in the state of Connecticut for calendar year 2002.

Business Entreprenuership Award: Deliotte and Touche FAST50 Award for 2001. Recognized for the 1st time for leading one of the top 50 fastest growing technology firms in the state of Connecticut for calendar year 2001.

Personal Interests and Projects

The Parent-Coach Timeout Meeting: A Framework for Effective Communication in Youth Sports. Essential Scrum and Group Relations concepts applied to youth sports.

The PCT is a framework that allows Coaches and Parents to communicate clearly, such that Parents, Coaches and Kids can a) learn from experience during the season, b) make adjustments, and c) have much more FUN in pursuit of shared objectives.

Openness, Focus, Commitment, Respect and Courage are Scrum values.The PCT process is essentially Scrum, adapted to youth sports….and is especially focused on youth hockey.

Follow me on twitter (@DanMezick)

Send me an email at dan.mezick [at] newtechusa[dot][com].

Driving Directions to Agile Connecticut Meetings

REGISTER for the NEXT, UPCOMING Meeting

Microsoft Corporation

74 Batterson Park Road

Farmington, CT 06032

PHONE: 860- 678 – 3100

Directions traveling from 84 West (from Hartford)

Exit 37 (Fienemann Rd.), Right off ramp.

At next set of lights take a left onto Batterson Park Road.

Continue on Batterson, you’ll pass Bank of America on your left.

After Bank of America, you will see Pond View Corporate Center 74-78. Take a left and head up the driveway bearing right at the fork.

Take a left into the parking lot.
Microsoft is located at 74 Batterson Park Road, building on the left.

Directions from 84 East (from Waterbury)

Exit 37 (Fienemann Rd.)

At end of ramp, go straight through lights onto Batterson Park Road.

Continue on Batterson, you’ll pass Bank of America on your left.

After Bank of America, you will see Pond View Corporate Center 74-78. Take a left and head up the driveway bearing right at the fork.

Take a left into the parking lot.

Microsoft is located at 74 Batterson Park Road, building on the left.

Directions from 91 South(from Springfield and points North)

From 91 South, take exit 32B to 84 West. Follow directions from 84West above.

MAP:
Google Map

REGISTER for the NEXT, UPCOMING Meeting

Good Agile and Scrum links from all around the Web

NOTE:

if you ever get to Boston from time to time, be sure to check out our OTHER, Boston-based user group, Agile Boston

Introductory Links

www.controlchaos.com

www.agilealliance.com

Intermediate-Level Links

www.scrumalliance.org

www.agile2008.org

Chickens and Pigs– harsh or helpful? From Jeff Sutherland

Advanced Links

THE NOKIA TEST VIDEO WITH DR. JEFF SUTHERLAND. NOTE: There is an update coming for this topic; I learned alot at the Agile2008 conference from folks like Kati Vilkii, COO of Business Excellence at Nokia Seimens Networks. Updates to follow….

Jeff Sutherland (co-creator of Scrum) Scrum Log

The Scrum Papers: The Evolution of Scrum since 1993 from Jeff Sutherland.

Takeuchi and Nonaka are Godfathers of the Scrum Agile Process since they coined the term in their seminal paper in the Harvard Business Review in 1986.

Link to updated works and original paper that kicked off Scrum: This is a foundational work and important reading for Scrum scholars. TITLE: The New New Product Development Game, Harvard Business Review, 1986

Concept of Ba: “the space” — Nonaka is one of the original authors of the Harvard Business Review article “The New New Product Development Game” which influenced the development of Scrum. This is another co-authored article by Nonaka on the concept of ‘ba’ and knowledge creation. It is interesting.

Group Dynamics Links

Forming, Storming, Norming, Performing: Now THAT’s a saying you run into quite a bit in Agile circles. Here is the original research paper from the 1960’s, upon which that trendy saying is based: Developmental Sequence in Small Groups by Bruce Tuckman