Why Spotify’s agile patterns work and why you shouldn’t copy them

There is no Spotify agile model. But lots of people from Spotify keep talking about how their system of people and processes operates. It all sounds very good. It’s like showing people a chocolate cake, telling them how good it is to eat, and then saying “don’t eat chocolate cake”. There’s a very good reason…

Better together: Agile + Lean UX

I’ve always liked Dave Landis’s diagram on how design thinking, Lean UX and agile go together. Something, however, always felt a little off that these elements still seemed separate over being integrated. It took me til I went to Jeff Patton’s Passionate Product Owner course (CSPO) that I began to know what I didn’t know…

PRINCE2 processes vs Agile development frameworks

UPDATED: 27/05/2017 PRINCE2 has been the gold standard for project management certification for over a decade. It’s commonly a prerequisite for project managers and is recognised as being essential for keeping projects “in control” particularly in the public sector in Australia where Zen Ex Machina does a lot of its work. I think it is with…

Becoming agile with Zen Ex Machina

Zen Ex Machina has been helping people and organisations to be agile. Digital transformation isn’t a one-size-fits-all. It requires an understanding of context, customers and the vision if products and services and how they align to the outcomes an organisation feels is of value. This publication details how: Zen Ex Machina has helped a number…

Zen Ex Machina recognised as one of the top 30 Innovative Companies to watch in 2017

Really excited that Insights Success named Zen Ex Machina as one of their top 30 innovative companies to watch in 2017. Zen Ex Machina: Simplifying Complex Business Problems with Enterprise Agility The digital economy has transformed the way both small and large businesses operate and engage with their customers. Competition, government policy, industry standards and…

Backlog Refinement

Product Backlog refinement is the act of adding detail, estimates, and order to items in the Product Backlog. This is an ongoing process in which the Product Owner and the Team collaborate on the details of the Product Backlog, refine and revise it. It ensures that the Team and Product Owner have sufficiently defined Product…

What is Sprint Planning?

Sprint Planning is held on the first day of the Sprint. This key Scrum event is designed to provide the Team and the Product Owner an opportunity to conduct just-in-time planning for items at the top of the Product Backlog that are of high-value for delivery at the end of the Sprint. Sprint Planning is…

The Sprint Review

The Sprint Review marks the end of the Sprint. This key event is a mechanism to inspect what was delivered in order to adapt, improve and introduce changes into the next Sprint, particularly in relation to the Product Backlog and the Definition of Done. As such, this key meeting is used by the Team to undertake a…

The Retrospective

What is a Retrospective and how can you get the most out of this key Scrum event?

Backlog Refinement Patterns: Ying and Yang

The Scrum Guide is a great, simple instruction book that reminds people that to get the best out of Scrum. Remember, the Scrum Guide is only 13 pages long, so don’t over complicate things. The devil is in the detail, though. While it reads very black and white, knowing how to accomplish things like Backlog…

Agile is a mindset. Agile is behaviour.

Ahmed Sidkey’s agile mindset image is one I remember fondly from a few years ago at Agile 2014 — a depiction of the differences between doing agile and being agile. I found it very useful at the time. After seeing it again at Agile NZ 2016, and looking at it’s linear flow from mindset to…

How do I run the Sprint Review?

The Daily Scrum (also known as the Stand-up) is a means for the Development Team to inspect their Sprint Goal and adapt their Sprint Backlog so that they can hold true to their commitments. Most Daily Scrums, however, turn quickly into a status report meeting either to the Scrum Master, the Product Owner, or even […]