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Assessing Team Improvement

by Esther Derby, 5 October 2015 | The Agile Blogosphere

I understand that managers who have invested effort and money in training teams in Agile methods may want to see how much those teams are improving.  There are a handful of reasonable measures to look at to see whether the organization is improving over all (which I’ve written about here and here). You can apply some of those measures to team improvement.  Are defects trending down?  Is the...
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Agile and The Chasm

Someone posed the question:  Has Agile Crossed the Chasm?, a reference to Moore’s work on marketing. Agile is no longer the prevue of pioneers and visionaries.  Agile shows...
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The Elements of Improvement

Improvement requires three factors: Information. People need information about the context and how their work fits into the big picture. They need information from the work so they...
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Self-Awareness Matters: Finding Your Filters

I remember sitting in a project meeting back when I worked for a Big Company. The project manager, Ted, announced the top three priorities.  When I offered a different view point,...
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Alternatives to bureaucratic hierarchy

I don’t doubt that its possible to have an organization with out traditional managers. I’ve read about Semco and Morningstar Farms. I’ve talked to people who work...
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What do middle managers do?

Last week, someone tweeted that the C-suite “gets agile,” but middle managers “resist” it. I also saw a tweet that the C-suite doesn’t get agile, but middle...
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Hiring is a Team Activity

In an earlier article, I said, “Hiring new people for a team should always be a joint decision that involves team members.” After all, who has more at stake than the people who...
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The Costs of a Struggling Team

Last week, I posted a mind map that shows the benefits of the team effect.  But what about the costs of a team that is not doing well?  A team that isn’t working well doesn’t...
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The Team Effect

A while back, I posted a little mind map about business costs of a struggling team.  But what about the benefits of the team effect?  What does a business gain when teams thrive? The...
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But are they working hard?

by Esther Derby, 27 February 2012
The Agile Blogosphere

Recently, I met with a group of managers who work in an organization moving towards agile methods. People seem to be happy working on cross-functional teams. They solve problems and...
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ScrumMaster? Coach? Agile Coach? The needs of the team and work define the role.

by Esther Derby, 6 February 2012
The Agile Blogosphere

No matter the name, the  intention of the role is to help teams learn new skills, continuously improve, and make the transition to a new way of working. Some people say it’s...
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Command & Control: Let’s talk about power

Command and control isn’t just a mindset and a style of management (though it is both those things). What we don’t often talk about is the power that rests with people in...
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Agile Teams at Scale: Beyond Scrum of Scrums

by Esther Derby, 27 December 2011
The Agile Blogosphere

Agile methods depend on effective cross-functional teams. We’ve heard many Agile success stories…at the team level. But what happens when a product can’t be delivered...
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