Once Upon a Time before Agile

Once upon a time, before “agile”, the IT world teemed with scary monsters—huge methodologies in multiple 3-ring binders, processes stacked upon processes and excruciatingly detailed documents ad infinitum. This was the 1980’s when proponents of methodologies such as Information Engineering spent 18-24 months in strategic IT planning before any projects were started! Another 18-24 months […]

Writing to Learn

“Writing is a form of thinking, whatever the subject,” says William Zinsser in his book, Writing to Learn. Agile methods are driven by feedback and learning practices and so it’s important to understand how learning to write well is critical to learning well. The entire results of software projects are writings. Whether the output is […]

You Can’t Plan Away Uncertainty

I’ve recently moved from Venice, Florida back to the West—to Lafayette, Colorado near Boulder to be specific. As I launch my cycling activity here I was reminded of an article I wrote several years ago on Hudson Bay Starts. Riding in the Boulder/Lafayette area has infinite possibilities—hundreds of miles of off-road bike trails and a […]

Organizing for Innovation

One of the constant questions I get goes something like, “Should we create a separate agile group, team, department, product team, or plan our agile transformation within our current organization?” This question arises for agile transformations, but also for innovation in general. Many people approach these questions as problems to be solved once and for […]

Determining Business Value

The topic of business value is a complex one and it’s easy to get mired in the morass of calculating ROI or in trying to define what intangibles are relevant to your organization. What I will attempt to do in this blog is provide a model for looking at business value focusing on the portfolio […]