Category Archives: People issues

Who is Scrum for?

A few months ago someone I know and respect in the Agile community said that they do agile to make the world safe for programmers. This phrase has stuck with me. I don’t know how seriously the person meant it. I suspect it was partially a joke and partially a stronger statement than one might […]

Meet the Meeting Killers

Here is an entertaining article in the WSJ.  About the types of people who kill meetings. Scrum of course has some meetings. It is trying to minimize meetings, and make meetings better. But as soon as you have people and meetings, you can have some….umm…interesting times.  So, may your meetings not be interesting this way. […]

The Team and Introverts

I have several friends who are introverts.  And, as I get older, I recognize my own introvert side. And I appreciate it more, and accept it more. (The MBTI says I am an extrovert.)  It is to one introvert friend that I dedicate this post, a friend who has given me so many insights into […]

More on: The Product Owner and the Team

There has been some interesting discussion on this topic recently.  Two things I wanted to add to my prior post. 1. The business side cannot force the Doers to “do all that I say” in the Sprint. This is of course a well-known rule of Scrum. But this rule does not eject the PO from […]

The Team and introverts

Thomas Edison, an introvert. I love introverts.  Some of my best friends are introverts. First, it may help to define the terms.  Introverts gain energy with quiet time; extroverts gain energy being with people.  See, for example:   To me, neither term is in favor or out of favor. I have been talking a lot […]

Getting personal

One of the things I like most about Scrum is that it makes people, well, personal. It allows people to be themselves. One of the best suggestions I ever heard for living was: Love your neighbor as yourself. (Might I be a touch sarcastic? Still, I also mean the message quite straightforwardly.) Of course, as […]


I have a book by Rollo May that I have barely started to read: “The Courage to Create.” This seems to me an important topic, creativity, because hopefully it is what I am training teams to do — to be more creative — and what he says is that it takes courage. One aspect of […]

The Unbearable Lightness of Being

Just finished “The Unbearable Lightness of Being” by Milan Kundera. As a start, see this. I drew a few observations from the book about our work. Surprise! In our work, we too feel everything is unbelievably ‘light’ and transient. At least some of us do, some of the time, and, with all of the change, […]

No man is an island, entire of itself

In summers past, I have gone whale-fishing from Nantucket island. Well, not I, although I did go to beautiful Nantucket, as did Ishmael, but they never called me Ishmael. I have set out from Nantucket, as they did in former days, intent to catch a whale. Albeit mine was a metaphorical whale. So, you see […]

Fearless Change

Mary Lynn Manns is visiting Agile-Carolinas in Charlotte next week. As many of you will know, Dr. Manns is the co-author of Fearless Change, along with Linda Rising. This is a great book about getting people to adopt a new idea (eg, lean-agile-scrum). So, I wanted to take this opportunity, in thanks, to praise the […]