Category Archives: leadership

When would I not want to do Scrum?

This is a slight variant on the question I asked before. I wanted to add a few things that I did not say before.  You still might want to do a project despite some of the things I will mention, but I have gotten impatient as I have gotten older. So, when? Some things I […]

The Team is primary

There has been a lot of discussion in the community lately about scaling.  With specific discussion of the SAFe and LeSS frameworks. I don’t have a strong opinion on many of the issues. I do think each scaling situation is different.  I do think the music (the values and principles inside the players) is at […]

Managing self-organizing teams

How do we suggest that managers …well… manage self-organizing teams? By self-organizing, I also mean self-managing.  Let’s assume that not all ‘self-organizing teams’ will self-organize or self-manage effectively. So, a few suggestions. 1. Get rid of almost all the old stuff. I really want you to think about getting rid of it all.  I cannot […]

Change: “You miss 100% of the shots you never take.”

This is a quote by Wayne Gretzky. I am flying to Canada now. And I like hockey. Today the quote reminds me of how hard change is. To make any change happen in an organization is hard.  It takes a lot of energy.  It takes a willingness to miss a shot, to make a mistake, […]

Radical Management

Steve Denning has written a great agile book for managers, called The Leader’s Guide to Radical Management. Here are the five principles: A shift in the goal of making money for shareholders to delighting customers through continuous innovation. A shift in the role of managers from controlling individuals to enabling self-organizing teams. A shift in […]

6 Myths of Product Development

This is a very useful article in the HBR, by Stefan Thomke and Donald Reinertson.  Reinertson is well known in the lean-agile community.  It is excellent.  Go here to buy it for $6.  Well worth it. Here are the myths or fallacies they mention: 1. High utilization of resources will improve performance. By ‘resources’ they […]

We want a Stable Team

I think our work generally is about knowledge creation.  And specifically, your business is about knowledge creation. (Knowledge creation is key for almost all people who attend my courses and workshops.) It is about innovation, creativity, and inventiveness. It is about cool solutions to hard business-technology problems.  It is about some sort of intersection between […]

What to do with managers?

First, unlike some in the agile community, I think managers can be and even are useful in lean-agile-scrum.  Even essential. The first problem is that we do not explain to them how things have changed, and how they can be effective in the new environment. Still, there is a lot of evidence, on many levels […]

John Kotter Explains the 8 Steps to Create Successful Change

Here is a slide show and voice over by John Kotter (our best expert on change) talking about how to get organizations to change.  Watch and listen here.  [This was a link, and it is broken now.]  About 7 minutes. [We can send you now to the 8 steps page at Kotter International.] Here is […]

Leaning in, Leaning back

Some of you may know of my dance theory of human relationships.  It is a simple theory, and like many simple things, true at least some of the time. It says that if you want someone to come closer, you must move backwards, as most any pair dancer will tell you.  That of course assumes […]