Projects at Work

Agile


2015 Agile PM Software Report

- by ProjectsatWork.com

A new research report from Software Advice sheds light on which functionalities of agile project management software have the greatest impact on efficiency, and the extent to which agile methods are used in teams beyond software development.

Everyone In On Estimates

- by Bart Gerardi

Establishing a small "brain trust" to develop project estimates might seem like a reasonable way to optimize resources, but it goes against three closely held Agile principles. Worse, it will likely lead to less accurate estimates, while disengaging the team and undermining value.

How Big Can Scrum Go?

- by Dave Prior

Agile coach, consultant and author Bas Vodde shares insights and practical tips for scaling Scrum efforts in larger organizations, including key principles of the Large-Scale Scrum (LeSS) framework, which features fewer roles, artifacts and handoffs, among other guidelines. [32:40]

A Language of Agile

- by Dave Prior

Michael Vizdos has helped people better understand and implement Scrum for almost 25 years, while Peter Green has led Agile transformation efforts at Adobe since 2008. Here, they discuss how they apply the values and techniques of Nonviolent Communication to their work and their lives. [24 min.]

Do No Sprint Harm

- by Bart Gerardi

Creating a test sprint or varying the length of a sprint might seem like helpful ideas to address common problems on agile projects, but they should be avoided at all costs. These anti-patterns won’t fix the real underlying issues; in fact, they will probably exacerbate them and weaken your team.

Don’t Start Over

- by Dave Prior

Why tear down a liveable house when you could remodel it to suit your specific needs? Specializing in test-driven development, “chief code whisperer” Scott Ford has built a team at Corgibytes to fix and maintain existing applications, which he likens to solving a mystery. Here, he advocates for disciplined documentation and offers suggestions for project managers who want to "peek" into the process. [13:45]

Velocity Is A Plan

- by Bart Gerardi

Velocity is an agile planning tool, not a measure of productivity. Its purpose is to help determine which stories will fit into a sprint, and how many sprints remain until a release is ready or the project is done. Velocity is not about team efficiency or effectiveness, and treating it as a metric to continually improve is another Agile Anti-Pattern.

Agile Anti-Pattern #8: Lucky Dog

- by Bart Gerardi

It can seem like a good idea to add a backup story into a sprint — if works gets blocked or things turn out easier than expected, another story can be pulled into the sprint. However, having more than one story identified, even if not committed, is likely to lead to less work getting done.

An Agile-Waterfall Union

- by Shawn Dickerson

Given their fundamental differences, can Agile and Waterfall methodologies really be combined without causing more headaches than the effort is worth? Yes, but like any successful marriage, it takes some compromise and adjustment. Here are a few guidelines to make it work and reap the best of both worlds.

Write Better User Stories

- by Sondra Ashmore, Kristin Runyan

Writing effective user stories on Agile projects requires collaboration between the product owner and team. The effort involves agreeing on the depth of technical detail in the story, ensuring that epics are appropriately broken down, and adding acceptance criteria. Let’s look at some helpful examples for each step.

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EVENTS

Anuj S: "Well said. Its like one is writing the genes of the project prior to execution." on Managing Project Pressure
March 6, 2015

Terry S: "Developing a project management plan that will produce results goes far beyond c…" on Managing Project Pressure
March 5, 2015

Guillermo A C: "While I have experience this problem I never knew it had a name. I normally cal…" on The Turkey Problem
March 3, 2015

Rogerio S: "Terrific! By the way, someone can tell me what to do when we find a circular ca…" on 10 Decision-Making Traps
March 3, 2015

 

TOP CONTRIBUTORS

Dave Prior

Agile Consultant, BigVisible Solutions
Dave Prior, PMP, CST, MBA is an Agile Consultant for BigVisible where he…

Andy Jordan

President, Roffensian Consulting Inc.
Andy Jordan is a well known author and speaker on project management and…

Bart Gerardi

Sr. Technical Program Manager, Amazon.com
Bart has been an ecommerce program manager for 15 years, and can’t…

Cornelius Fichtner

Cornelius Fichtner, PMP is a noted PMP expert. He has helped over 25,000…

Kathleen O'Connor

I’m a freelance journalist and digital content strategist with 15+…

Aaron Smith

Editorial Director, ProjectsAtWork.com
Aaron has been the editor of ProjectsAtWork since 2001, leading its evol…

BLOGS

Large Scale Scrum (LeSS)

Posted by Dave Prior

Scaling Scrum is an ongoing hot topic in the Agile space. For a while the most common answer to the question was scrum of scrums. It's a sensible approach, and it works... up to a poi...
Posted in: The Reluctant Agilist


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