Psychological Safety: Patterns from Child Psychology to Build Safety in Teams

In this presentation, ZXM’s Partner for Agile Enterprise Transformation, Matthew Hodgson, looks at psychological safety through the lens of a psychological, research-based approach to creating psychological safety – and an example of its use to deal with Agile team dysfunction, strengthen trust and help build a learning culture in teams. Click to view Matthew’s presentation…

Sizing and Cycle Time

Mike Cohn is quite explicit when he says story points reflect the effort required to get a Story to “Done”: In a class a few years back, I was given a wonderful example of this. Suppose a team consists of a little kid and a brain surgeon. Their product backlog includes two items: lick 1,000…

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…

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 a Daily Scrum?

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…

How do I run Sprint Planning?

Sprint Planning is an event in Scrum in which the Scrum Master, Product Owner and Development Team collaborate on what to deliver in the next Sprint. How do you run this event so that it doesn’t turn into yet another meeting? This checklist runs through the basics of Sprint Planning and a sequence of questions…