Skip to main content

Thinking every day - Thoughts for July 2011

I thought putting out a radical management thought for the day (#RMtftD) would be a cool thing to do. It would attract attention, stimulate conversations, and improve my own learning. If there was one part that I underestimated, it was the last point. It is a challenge to come up with something interesting to say every day. So I have been reading more and reflecting more on what happens around me.

BTW - the RMTftD has also been a winner on the first two points. I now have over 210 followers, up from 140 when I started two months ago. I have gotten really encouraging feedback from my early retweeters, and stimulated some interesting conversations, like this July's discussion on why management innovation is so difficult.

On good profits, bad profits and the power of market position 

These tweets were largely inspired by Fred Reichheld, The Ultimate Question:
  • Dominant players have economic advantage. If this is not used to make customers :-), position and advantage will not last
  • When a customer feels mislead, mistreated ignored or coerced, then profits from that customer are bad. http://bit.ly/ggZbv1
  • Bad Profits are about extracting value from the customers, not creating value.
  • Bad profits work their damage by creating detractors - people who will avoid your product if they can and warn others away
  • When did you last recommend a product or company? When did you last warn a friend away from a product or company? Why?
  • How do customers react when upset? They can get even like never before! How many banks delight their customers? http://Konto-korrekt.com
On change innovation and management

These tweets were largely inspired by Don Reinertsen, Second Generation Lean Product Development:
  • Does sensible behaviour prevail against dysfunctional formal process? Maybe for a while. Long term, process "wins."
  • Risk aversion drives innovation from the development process. Middle management is risk adverse. What happens to innovation?
  • A slow innovation process becomes an imitation process. How long does your company need to bring something new to market?
  • The average product developer begins design when 50% of requirements are known. They simply do not publicize this to management.
General cool stuff to stimulate thinking
  • The radical CEO: If management is distant, people wait for orders. My Goal: People think 4 themselves. http://bit.ly/qVAR6Z
  • If you are out of fresh ideas, read a book. http://onforb.es/mU6X8s
  • More proof that interdisciplinary teams are better: Want a smarter team? Add women. http://bit.ly/peLRCq
  • Charisma is the result, not the goal, of leadership. tinyurl.com/3pa28jm 
  • So many experts tell us management is broken. Why is management innovation so hard to apply?
Why is management innovation so hard to apply?

This last tweet sparked several an interesting twitter exchange with Steve Denning and Don Reinertsen and several blog entries including:
More musings
  • If you want to be read, have something meaningful to say, say it often, and have a catchy title. http://bit.ly/pMtryQ
  • Scrum and Kanban fans in the same forum? Result: More heat than light. I am a fan of open intellectual systems.
  • In order to achieve speed you must first slow down. Why is slow faster? You don't break things.
  • When you are on vacation, be on vacation. The #RMTftD is taking a break until August 8.
Again, I would like to thank Don for what I think is the most important of all these thoughts: "I am a fan of open intellectual systems." There is no one single right way of doing things, but many right ways. Perhaps there is a best way for you and I am sure you will find it by learning from what is out there and building on it to meet your needs.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Scaling Scrum: SAFe, DAD, or LeSS?

Participants in last week's Scrum MasterClass wanted to evaluate approaches to scaling Scrum and Agile for their large enterprise. So I set out to review the available frameworks. Which one is best for your situation?

Recently a number of approaches have started gaining attention, including the Scaled Agile Framework ("SAFe") by Dean Leffingwell, Disciplined Agile Development (DAD), by Scott Ambler, and Large Scale Scrum (LeSS), by Craig Larman and Bas Vodde. (Follow the links for white papers or overviews of each approach).

How to compare these approaches? My starting point is Scrum in the team. Scrum has proven very effective at helping teams perform, even though it does not directly address the issues surrounding larger organizations and teams. An approach to scaling Scrum should not be inconsistent with Scrum itself.

Scrum implements a small number of principles and constraints: Inspect and Adapt. An interdisciplinary Team solves the problem. Deliver something of va…

Sample Definition of Done

Why does Scrum have a Definition of Done? Simple, everyone involved in the project needs to know and understand what Done means. Furthermore, Done should be really done, as in, 'there is nothing stopping us from earning value with this function, except maybe the go-ahead from the Product Owner. Consider the alternative:
Project Manager: Is this function done?
Developer: Yes
Project Manager: So we can ship it?
Developer: Well, No. It needs to be tested, and I need to write some documentation, but the code works, really. I tested it... (pause) ...on my machine. What's wrong with this exchange? To the developer and to the project manager, "done" means something rather different. To the developer in this case, done means: "I don't have to work on this piece of code any more (unless the tester tells me something is wrong)." The project leader is looking for a statement that the code is ready to ship.

At its most basic level, a definition of Done creates a sh…

10 Warning Signs, that your team is not self-organizing

How do you know that self-organization is working? The Bern Chapter of Scrum Breakfast Club looked into this questions, and identified the following warning signs (which I have taken the liberty of translating).

The team reports to the Scrum Master at the Daily ScrumPeople wait for instructions from the Scrum MasterTeam members don't hold each other responsible [for their commitments]The same impediment comes up twice"That's the way it is" => resignation"I" instead of "We"Flip charts are lonelyCulture of conflict-avoidanceDecisions processes are unclear, nor are they discussedPersonal goals are more important than team goals
To this list I would add my a couple of my favorites:
you don't see a triangle on the task board (not working according prioritization of stories)after the daily Scrum, people return directly to their desks (no collaboration)there are a least as many stories in progress as team members (no pairing)
P.S. You can join the …