Help! I don’t have time to do requirements right!

It seems each year it gets worse and worse—BAs have WAY too much to do! They can’t say no and can’t ask leaders to slow down the flow of requirements work. The backlog grows bigger and bigger, and teams get further behind every day. It’s impossible to catch up. I am going to write something that…
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Leadership and project management in a typical agile team

In my last article, I claimed that you can have an agile project manager who ran agile projects. But the projects I described did not involve “typical” agile teams. So now I want to show that a project manager can work well with a typical agile team. Let me start with a simple question:  Can a…
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Agile project management patterns

In my last article, I used a homemade leadership model to look at leadership in a self-managed (agile) team. I then used this as a basis to look briefly at how project managers might help or hinder an agile team. Here I take that concept a step further by looking at how people use project manager…
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True confessions: I was an agile project manager

I was once an agile project manager. In fact, I did it more than once. If that is not shocking enough then maybe I should also confess that I have coached, trained and enabled others to be agile project managers. In this article, I will share my experience of being an agile PM without a real product…
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A practical playbook for thriving in uncertainty by Pat Reed

At the recent Agile Australia conference held in Melbourne on 18-19 June, SoftEd's agile executive, coach and transformational leader, Pat Reed delivered a presentation entitled ' Accelerating business agility: a playbook for thriving in uncertainty. 'Pat's presentation explored why developing the…
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The problem with project managers and product-based thinking

Once upon a time, I used to run projects. To be honest, I am probably a better BA than a PM, but I have run quite a few projects and my projects always seemed to come through okay. So when I encountered agile projects with product owners on them, I was pretty relaxed. I had encountered ScrumMaster…
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The problem with project managers and self-managing agile teams

I sometimes get involved in discussions about whether agile teams need project managers. I have a very strong view on this – NO, we do not need project managers, unless of course, we do, in which case YES. Project managers are nice people and we should let them hang out with the team if they want to…
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Foundation of DevOps is PMI accredited

SoftEd has just announced that Foundation of DevOps is now accredited by the Project Management Institute (PMI). PMI is the world's leading professional membership association for project managers with over 500,000 global members. The DevOps movement is on the rise and becoming increasingly…
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When is an agile coach not an agile coach?

I was talking to some experienced agile people and we started to discuss “agile coaching. ”We agreed that it was a great idea and that everyone should have an agile coach. But then we realised that we did not mean the same thing when we said “coach. ”We did agree on some things, like being able to…
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Is 'Communication' really the problem?

Many leaders I work with seek feedback from staff on what they can improve. Often by anonymous surveys*. There will usually be a response along the lines of "Not enough communication" or "Poor communication. "*could the fact that the survey is anonymous tell us more about the culture than we'd like…
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It's a catastrophe - how does an agile coach respond?

In this series of articles, I will provide suggestions for helping people tackle problems and “catastrophes. ”In each case, I either provide some open questions or “a couple of boxes on a wall. ”I have been working with some agile coaches recently and we discussed two related problems:When you do a…
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Coaching when they will do the wrong thing

My last couple of articles have been about presenting ideas so that people listen to what you are saying.  But what happens if you explain something to people and then they decide to do the wrong thing anyway? Of course, it is possible that you were wrong and that they are right.  But what if you are…
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