Saturday, 16 October 2010

Agile Cambridge: Agile is a journey, not a destination

Although I have done it (tongue in cheek) before, I don't like reviewing my own presentations. So I was delighted when Giovanni Asproni, (ACCU conference chair) reviewed my participation at Agile Cambridge 2010 and was kind enough to allow me to publish his comments:

Rachel (Davies) spoke about building trust in agile teams. Setting aside lots of interesting material about the importance of trust in teams and on various techniques to use or avoid in order to earn trust, the highlight of her keynote was an exercise where Paul Grenyer was volunteered by Rachel to do a stage diving (interestingly enough, Rachel, Allan, Paul and I had talked about it the night before at the pub, but we didn’t think Rachel was going to take the conversation seriously ;-)). He accepted and was caught by a group of six or eight people (which included Jon Jagger and Allan Kelly who joined them to make sure the ACCU didn’t loose one of its most valued members). I’m happy to report that Paul was not hurt during the exercise (neither were Jon and Allan).

Paul (Grenyer) presented a session entitled "Agile is a journey not a destination" where he described his experience in introducing agile development practices at his company. The session was aimed at people trying to introduce agile in their own companies for the first time. Paul presented the material in a clear and compelling way, and, judging from the number of questions at the end, the audience really enjoyed it. Personally, I found the content quite interesting, and I was truly impressed by the way he delivered the presentation.

Agile is a journey not a destination presentation slides available on request.

1 comment:

  1. I attended the Agile Cambridge 2010 event and was generally impressed by the presentaions of all. Some had less relevance to me, but were interesting and valuable none the less.

    Sitting in on Paul's "Agile Is A Journey, Not a Destination" presentation it quickly became apparent that Paul and his team have begun the journey that me and my team are currently embarking on.

    I have previously worked for a consultancy whose delivery model is heavily focused on and around Agile. All the engagements where short though, no less than 3 months, no more than 6 months. The Agile method used was bespoke, not adhering to any particular strand of Agile and it worked well. Mainly because of the trust amongst piers and willingness of the clients.

    I hacve since moved on and find myself back in a "normal" development team. Since becoming a member of the team I have been deperate to get some direction in to the team and drastically improve the service provided by the team to the business users. Step 1, delivery.

    Paul's presentation was as close to home as it could be. He and his team are a couple of steps ahead of us, but suffered the same problems we had/have. His insight in to these problems, the resolutions and approaches have all contributed to helping us.

    For any organisation thinking of implementing Agile, or trying to implement Agile and having difficulties; you missed a good lesson in how it sould be done or a good validation excercise to know that you are on the right path.

    During the day I heard Google's director of testing talk about their methods for success, Redgate's journey through delivering a new product from scratch and a presentation on the perfect project. All valuable, none as valuable as Paul's presentation.

    Well done. Thank you.