Category Archives: Teams

The importance of teams

As I teach Scrum and Lean-Agile classes, I often meet people who don’t understand teams. Often this is true for some of the smartest and most capable people. Why? I think there are many answers. One is that they have been taught the single-leader team discipline. (This is the phrase that Katzenbach and Smith use […]

What is Scrum?

I am excited to be giving a Certified ScrumMaster course with Jeff Sutherland next week in Richmond, Virginia. So, I was thinking: What is the essence of Scrum if you would play the game well? (Remember that Scrum is named for the Scrum formation in Rugby. We often show a video of the famous All […]

Breaking the world record

My younger daughter has her last swim meet of the season tonight. I am excited (and still a bit affected by Father’s Day yesterday). When I talk about Agile & Scrum & Lean, I often refer to the Michael Phelps’ attitude. Not his attitude in South Carolina, whatever you may think of that. (Not that […]

Small teams

I was just looking at “The Discipline of Teams” by Katzenbach and Smith. These are the same gentlemen who wrote “The Wisdom of Teams.” First, my strong bias (which I find is reinforced in many places, including this book) is that all “real work” these days takes place in teams. (Yes, I need to add […]

What’s a team?

Let’s review what is a team in Agile or Scrum. A small group — seven plus or minus two — motivated by the vision of one person that will realize good Business Value; dedicated (usually 100%… certainly a lot), with almost all the skills needed to realize the vision; that works together daily. A team […]

The Concept of “Ba”

“Ba can be thought of as a shared space for emerging relationships.” This is a quote from Nonaka’s paper called (surprise): “The concept of ‘Ba.’” Why is this important? Takeuchi and Nonaka work at a famous business school in Japan. They have been working on New Product Development to understand how and why some firms […]

Agile is not like golf

We have to be careful with similes (or metaphors). If you have played golf, you know that any fool can hit the golf ball a few yards with any of the clubs. It is getting that tiny ball in that tinier cup that’s the problem. It is scoring near par that is hard, and mastery […]