An Introduction to Cost of Delay

I was recently watching an episode of Shark Tank. I loved the unfiltered statement from Kevin O’Leary (Mr. Wonderful) toward an entrepreneur seeking an investor in his company. I’m here to make money! If you’re a fan of Shark Tank, you’ll notice something about Mr. Wonderful.  He keeps the conversation focused on the money.  When will he get his money back? How many multiples...

Is Predictability Really What We Want?

Predictability in software system delivery is as close to a Holy Grail as it comes in the IT industry. I’ve heard many people stress being able to have a predictable delivery cadence as something valuable to them. As recently as today I saw a reference to “predictability...

Failure Modes of an Agile Transformation: Workflow

In my previous post on the first three Agile transformation failure modes, I focused on the LEADERSHIP aspects of failure: lack of real executive sponsorship, failure to transform leader behaviors, and refusal to change organizational structures. These next...

What’s the Hurry? Building a Digital Enterprise

By Jim Highsmith and David Robinson Are the forces behind digital business, just one more wave of technology fueled change or is today’s business environment fundamentally different? If different, what are the critical capabilities required to survive and thrive?...

Changing the Tires

You're driving down the highway trying to reach a distant destination. You've had delays such as traffic along the way, and you know that you're going to have to "push it" in order to have any hope at all of arriving on time. You start to feel something strange...

Operationalizing Strategy with a Systems Perspective

While there are many books and much research on organizational development, this system view combined with some validated learning over time, is a powerful way to look at organizational challenges as a coach/consultant. Let’s take a closer look to define...

3 Thinking Tools for Minimizing Dependencies Between Products

In my post about how to form teams, I talk about products… not in their monolithic, holistic state… but as a subsystem within a larger integrated solutions architecture. In other words, big products are just series of small products that work together in an...

The Evolution of Teams

My other workshop submission for the Agile 2015 Conference is titled “The Evolution of Teams” and examines one team that stopped doing the traditional agile practices is more agile than ever. Agile practices such as daily stand up meetings, sprint planning...

Bend the Spoon

Bend the spoon is a phrase we use quite a bit here at LeadingAgile. I don’t want to hear what’s happening, I want to hear what we need to make happen… and what we are doing to make it happen. I don’t want to hear why we can’t do something, I want to...

Fueling Delivery Teams

I’ve started using an analogy to illustrate the importance of product owner teams in larger organizations.  When working with organizations to do an agile transformation, almost always, a tiered model is used for scaling across the organization. The model...

Changing Behavior by Asking the Right Questions

My article, Agile Adoption: Changing Behavior by Asking the Right Questions, has been published over on ProjectManagement.com (free registration required). It talks about when managers want change, but don’t want to squeeze the Agile out by force.

Can You Mandate Your Agile Transformation?

Well… it depends. If you view agile as a system of beliefs, or a way of looking at the world, or as a culture your company is expected to adopt…I’d suggest that it’s impossible to mandate an agile transformation. There is no way to force people to believe...

The Simplest Systems Thinking Exercise – How to Make Toast.

For many years one example of process thinking, resource gathering, requirements, implementation and acceptance criteria has been the exercise - make PB&J sandwiches.  I've done this with groups to discuss the simple task that we typically overlook as...


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What People Say

“Kelly is an Agile heavy-weight. He came in to assess my multi-million $ Agile development program which wasn’t delivering the right throughput. He interviewed most of the team and made some key recommendations that, when implemented, showed immediate results. I couldn’t ask for more than that except he’s a really nice guy as well.”

DAN PULHAM, DIGITAL DIRECTOR
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