Why call it “BV Engineering?”

A man I greatly respect wrote to ask why I call it “BV Engineering.”  There are many engineering disciplines, he noted, but is there a degree in “business value engineering”? I said I thought an MBA was the degree for this. Not another regular engineering degree,  but I agree with him that for some the […]

Identify your multiple! What?!

Let’s discuss the last post from the skeptic’s point of view. Simon (the implementer) 1: “OK, I don’t want to get fired, but what’s this ‘multiple’ got to do with it?” The multiple is the relationship between the cost of the team and the NPV (net present value) of the benefits the team delivers. As […]

ACTION: Go identify your multiple. Now.

Two posts ago, I buried a key idea in a lengthy list. Here’s the gist. When the managers come around trying to figure out who to “re-engineer,” would it be helpful to be able to say, “Guys, the firm invested in our team about $1 million last year and got about $3 million back in […]


I have been noticing the contradictions in Agile and Scrum lately. Jeff Sutherland recently did a post about persuasion. The latest post might be summarized as: “To persuade you must be confident and humble.” I guess no contradictions there, but he does talk about contradictions elsewhere. And this quote has been bouncing inside my head […]

Is Agile useful now?

You may have noticed a few not-entirely-happy things happening out there in the economy. It might even have affected you and perhaps even your place of work. So, in what ways is Agile relevant now? First, Agile is even more relevant now than before. (OK, just my assertion so far; see below.) Second, for reasonable […]

Should we invest in a better Product Owner?

I won’t bore you with the calculation, but if you assume that a better Product Owner can: increase the value of Product Backlog items (stories) in the ‘project’ by 20% on average identify the Pareto curve partially in the Product Backlog, so that an 85-33 rule applies And if we assume that the team costs […]

The great persuader is you

Last night I was speaking to the Metrolina PMI chapter. Good discussion; lots of interest in Agile. My topic was: Winning With Scrum. So, on that quickly. My experience and my hypothesis is that Scrum can be more fun and can enable your team(s) to be much more productive. It is designed to allow you […]

Productivity Now

The economy is in a bit of a tailspin now. We can help ourselves. If you wait for the Wizards of Washington to help, you might wait for the wrong team. How do we get ourselves out of this jam? We need a simple way, a simple feedback loop, for telling if we are productive, […]

Business Value Engineering

Business Value Engineering? What is that? Well, we mean all the practices and work-methods around assuring that more and more Business Value is being delivered to the customer, and the firm satisfies all its constraints (e.g., good return to shareholders). This is based on a key Lean idea. We are trying to optimize the end-to-end flow of […]

What to do first?

I just got an email from someone who recently went to one of our Scrum courses. (Note: This is a long but, I think, interesting post. Bear with it if you can.) QUESTION: Hi, Let’s say one is going to work as a team lead for a software project in an organization that currently does […]