Where do you sit as your Agile team's designated business expert?

Where do you sit as your Agile team's designated business expert?

"You're doing it wrong!"

If I had a dollar for every time I've heard an overbearing Scrum Master, misguided "Agile expert" or overzealous individual claiming to be an Agile coach say these or similar words, I'd be a rich man indeed.

What is right or wrong is often situational in Agile. The Scrum Master who insists that you must sit with the team may or may not be correct as to where you would be most effective. The idea that there is one and only one correct answer to the question of where you should sit is too simplistic.

Read More

What are User Stories good for?

What are User Stories good for?

There is more to User Stories than filling out a form. The "as a <user>, I want <something> so that I can <some benefit>" template is intentionally inadequate to capture details. Why is that? The general answer is that the details emerge from a conversation with the actual user. You may have heard the statement that User Stories are not about documentation; they are about conversation. This is true, but the conversation is more than just a further elicitation of detail. User Stories are about possibilities!

Read More

Off the Bookshelf - How Buildings Learn

How Buildings Learn: What happens after they’re built, By Stewart Brand

Agile is for software only? Check out this classic book on human factors in architecture by Stewart Brand. It turns out that we don't get buildings right the first time either. How Buildings Learn challenges us with a mindful consideration of buildings in time as well as space. If I close my eyes, I could swear Brand is writing about software. Expand your agile horizons and get ready for lots of parallels with Scrum and other agile practices!