Readers Request: Free Download Scrum Master, PO, Manager and Team Role sheet

A few months ago I wrote an experience report for the Agile Alliance in which I talked about how to get the various agile roles in place.  In the experience report I share my approach with striving for role agreements. The report is the fundament under my talk on the XP2020 conference.

As approach to get role agreement between PO and manager we held a series of talks in which we used a template with sliding-bars to indicate wether the responsibility was with the PO, the manager or shared. Readers approached me enthusiastically after reading the article and told me they want to try it in their own organisation. Great! They requested me to share the files so they can make a quick start with their initiative. In this blog I share the raw files for them and you to benefit.

The excel with the sliding bars that is used to start the delegation discusion between the PO and the manager can be found here:

Having a lot of conversation on the various roles yielded in insight on how we wanted to share responsibilities between the SM, PO, Manager and the Team. The article lists this in a big overview, that you can use to discuss and align the roles in your own organisation. If you want to edit it for your own purpose you can download the original file here.

Download is free for you benefit. It is highly appreciated if you refer to the author.You make me even more happy if you share your experiences with me, so we all can learn.

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Virtual Agile Coach Awareness Training

Today we host the second day of our brand new Agile Coach awareness training. Together with Jeroen van Deelen, Han Niessing and Kelly Tchai I have been working hard on creating an on-line interactive training for agile coaches. After a fruit-full first day we are proud to present our colleagues at Squerist with some new cases and exercises that will introduce them into the world of agile coaching and agile transitions.

During the training we use the “3 waves of Agile” model. This model identifies a wide set of challenges and areas that agile organisations are struggling with. In the training we introduce those challenges and used our experience to write challenging and recognisable cases. The workshop is highly interactive and participants will break-out to make small group assignments. By doing so they create awareness of the rich set off situations they will encounter as agile coach, they are challenged to put their agile knowledge into practise and while drafting solutions for the case-situations, they benchmark their knowledge with the other agile coaches in their team.

Although virtual, the first day proved to be entertaining and energetic. For the second day we enriched the variation in exercises and add more theory as well forms. Some topic we will address on day one were: Agile Maturity Scans, Multifunctional and multi disciplinary teams and release planning. Todays agenda covers Organising x-team, review sessions, creating clear roles in Scrum and Feature teams.

It promisses to be an interesting session again, so I am looking forward to the event.

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Webinar Recording – Built-in Quality, growing towards a BIQ Ambassador

Yesterday I virtually visited Uruguay to give a webinar for TestinUy. In this 30 min webinar I explain why it is important for organisations to trust in the quality of their systems. Built-in quality gives the trust to frequently adapt and release. So all the more reasons to look at how we can achieve BIQ and what levels of BIQ maturity we can recognise. As BIQ ambassador you help the organisations to define effective feedback loops and reduce waste. You can see the full recording of the webinar below.

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TestingUy: Webinar on Built-in Quality

On Tuesday 23 June I will be taking a virtual trip to Uruguay. In mind I will be strolling the streets of Montevideo again. In reality I’ll be sitting home talking to you about Built-in Quality.

In this online presentation we’ll discuss what Built-in Quality is and what different levels of BIQ we distinguish. How can we become BIQ ambassadors and help our organisations towards a continuous value delivery?

You can learn al about it during this TestingUy Webinar. It will be held 2 pm UY , which is 19:00 h Amsterdam time. Registration is free and can be done at the TestingUy website.

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‘Agile in de echte wereld’ book on Agile Alliance website

Glad to see that my book Agile in the echte wereld- Starten met Scrum got listed on the website of the Agile Alliance. You can check it out by clicking on the book cover.

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Role agreement in scaled multiple team organizations

For the Agile Alliance I wrote an experience report about how to overcome the struggling many organisation have in getting the various roles in place.  In this experience report I will share my approach with striving for role agreements. The report is the fundament under my talk on the XP2020 conference

In order to have effective teams it is crucial that everyone understands their role. In small organisations I had success with mission statements for e.g. the Scrum Master and Product Owner. But what approach do you choose in a large department where opinions varies from team to team and exceptions rule?  Where management is in a transition from traditional management toward agile leadership?

I learned that in a multiple team session the search for a single truth is futile and it is better to stimulate communication and alignment. The result of this approach was that a dialogue was started, and PO, SM and managers aligned rather than getting stuck in a discussion on the formal role description.

In the report I share the mission statements I used and the approach we took to get role agreement between PO and manager. This yielded in some insight on how we wanted to share responsibilities between the SM, PO, Manager and the Team. The article lists this in a big overview, that you can use to discuss and align the roles in your own organisation.

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21st Edition of XP2020 – Online Conference

XP is the premier Agile software development conference combining research and practice. It is a unique forum where Agile researchers, practitioners, thought leaders, coaches, and trainers get together to present and discuss their most recent innovations, research results, experiences, concerns, challenges, and trends. Whether you are new to Agile or a seasoned Agile practitioner, XP 2020 will provide an informal environment to learn and trigger discussions.

This 21st edition will be held online from 8-12 June. The program has been announced this week and I am triggered by the good content. Also I am proud to participate with an experience report called “Role agreements in Scaled Agile organisations” . You can find details about the conference program on the conference page. Participation is free for Agile Alliance members.

Register and join my session, or any other on the program at Tuesday 9 June.

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Impression of the online STAREast Tutorial on Test Management in Agile

Monday 4th of May I gave a full day tutorial on Test Management in Agile. This year STAREast went virtual, so I had to rebuild the tutorial to make it suitable for online participation. I think we (the 30+ participants and I) managed in keeping it an interesting day full of knowledge exchange, discussions and collaboration. I made a small video impression of the tutorial to give you an impression. Note, that I didn’t add the attendees participation to the video to comply with GDPR. Luckily Jan Jaap Cannegieter made a cameo as CEO in one of the cases. More info on the tutorial can be found at the STAREast Conference website.

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TestingUy: Back to Uruguay

It’s been a while since I was in Montevideo for the TestingUy. I am glad to participate again. I thought this time it will be virtual. The conference plans a series of webinars featuring the former keynote speakers. It’s a great line-up. Check out the talks of Janet, Gregory, Melissa Eaden, Kevin Richardson, Michael Bolton and Lisa Crispin. I will close the webinar series on 23 June. Hope to see you there!

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Jet-Lag while working from home

Today starts the STAREast conference. This Floriday based conference organised by Techwell and one of the premier conferences on software quality. Although running for years know, 2020 is the year they go virtual. The conference starts with a series of tutorials by Adam Auerbach, Adam Satterfield, Chris Loder, Dr. Jess Ingrassellino, Hans Buwalda, Janna Loeffler, Jason Arbon, Jeffery Payne, Jennifer Bonine, Michael Bolton, Robert Sabourin, Tariq King.

I will give the tutorial on Agile Test management that I developed with Jan Jaap Cannegieter. Whe have updated the program and enabled it for virtual delivery.

Although it’s really early in the morning, I am wide awake and all wrapped up and ready to go. Funny that when you do a virtual conference, you do not have to travel, but you still work in a different time zone. Will I still end up with a jet-lag tomorrow?

Hope to see you in my class, more info can be found on the conference website: STAREast

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EuroSTAR program announced

EuroSTAR will be an online experience this year. The program has been announced. It looks like its going to be a great event. I am proud to be part of the line-up. Check out the above mentioned speakers and all the other interesting sessions on the conference website.

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Keynote recording: Built-in Quality

Early March I was in Vienna for the Tesena Fest Conference. I gave a keynote on Built-in Quality. I shared challenges that we encounter during our agile transformations and linked them to quality measures that you can take on a team level. In the second part of the presentation I explained how the testers role can evolve towards a test coach and Built-in Quality (BIQ) Ambassador. I introduced a BIQ Maturity model and explained how we can use this model to design feedback loops that help us to overcome some of the challenges that I introduced at the start of the presentation.

Built-in Quality Feedback loops

Tesena made a very nice full length recording of my speech. The slides run parallel with the video. So I you happened to have missed the talk. You can now see it on slides live

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The 3 waves of Agile

In januari we published two articles on the Bits & Chips  website. This month the two parts are published in the hardcopy magazine as one integrated story. I think it looks great! In the article I describe how I see the role of the agile coach evolve from a Team Coach into that of a Business consultant/ Delivery coach or Councillor. Using three waves I describe the challenges that organisation have in their agile journey. Of course it is a model, and the real world is more complex, still I believe the article enables us to better explain to our organisation what they can expect and why, given the wave we are in, we focus on one challenge and not on the other. In the article I added a table that gives an overview of the challenges for each wave. I trust it serves as a checklist and can help agile coaches to explain why they focus on certain aspects.

You can find the article on you doormat when you subscribe to the magazine. But for your convenience I share it in PDF: also: Coaching in the 3rd wave of agile

I like to encourage you to comment on the article. Do you recognise the challenges and what are your experiences?

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Scaling Agile with SAFe – An experience story by Randy Soet

Yesterday we organised a Squerist Agile Knowledge Session at our office in Veenendaal. With 25+ colleagues we gathered for diner and a story on the agile journey of Randy Soet from Achmea. Randy is MT member and manager of three Product Owners. He is responsible for IT & Change from a business perspective. He also acts as Product Manager within the SAFe framework where he forms the leading coalition together with the Release Train Engineer.

In a loose setting Randy enthusiastically explains how they took the first steps to SAFe in 2016. He shares the problems they wanted to solve with this, how they did the implementation and what lessons they learned. It was an inspiring story about scaling Agile based on the SAFe framework.

Randy stated that the SAFe framework fits his organisation quite well. He explained the way they planned their releases, their focus on preparing not only the next ART but the advantages of looking further ahead. Luckily, he took time to answer our questions on how they organised their PI events about the evaluation of the completed Epics. According to him, the success of the transition is due to the combination of Lean and Agile, with the real drive of individuals to achieve together. It was great to hear a practical story from the trenches and share experiences with fellow colleagues. An evening well spent.  Thanks, Randy, for sharing your experiences

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Built-in Quality @Tesena Fest Vienna

Yesterday I was in Vienna for the Tesena Fest Conference. After organising this conference in Prague and Brno, the conference was held in Vienna for the first time. Despite the corona virus many participants joined to listen to some great talks and attend the afternoon workshops by a.o. Rik Marselis, Jennifer Bonine and Dominique Schildorfer.

I gave a keynote on Built-in Quality. I shared challenges that we encounter during our agile transformations and linked them to quality measures that you can take on a team level. I referred to the ebook that I wrote with Mette Bruhn-Pedersen and the tips the SAFe framework gives. In the second part of the presentation I explained how the testers role can evolve towards a test coach and Built-in Quality (BIQ) Ambassador. I introduced a BIQ Maturity model and explained how we can use this model to design feedback loops that help us to overcome some of the challenges that I introduced at the start of the presentation. I got nice feedback and had nice discussions afterwards. It has proven to be a valid and rich topic.

Below an impression of the talk:

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