I thought I would share a little about why this blog has been relatively silent lately. Some of it may feel like excuses while some may look like legitimate reasons. The truth is that there probably are a little of both.
stockimages – freedigitalphotos.net
I get my blog posts from two sources. First I read lots of other blogs and some books. Second I use experience in my job and to a lesser extent my personal life.
As I have mentioned in other easy to find outlets I am now employed as an IT Project Manager. This is a good thing. It helps keep the family fed and clothed. The person whose house we’re living in kind of expects some money back for the privilege. Pretty standard stuff really. It does limit my time for reading the blogs I used to keep up with. As I settle into this new position I hope to start gaining some time to keep up with relevant blogs again. As of now I am still in “fire-hose mode” and pretty exhausted by the new environment and routine by the time I get home. Basically, I don’t get much of the extra reading done I used to. I will also start getting ideas for blog posts from my work environment as time goes on. As anybody that works and writes about related topics knows this is a bit of a tension to manage. Historically I do this two ways, obfuscation and delay.
I just wanted to let out a quick note to let people know I am still here. We have made the trip to Colorado and are close to settling in.
Ambro – freedigitalphotos.net
The trip went well and the move itself has been largely outsourced. We have a rental and it is ready for our stuff to arrive soon.
I am going to be living in Castle Rock for the next 2 years. I am currently open for opportunities to come in as a Scrum Master, Agile Coach, or IT/Agile Project Manager. I can help your organization make an Agile Transition on a full-time or temporary basis. Feel free to contact me and we can talk about what we’ll be able to do for each other.
That said, I haven’t been sitting around doing nothing. I am actively seeking out positions similar to what I mentioned above.
I do have a post partially written and a couple more ideas sketched down in preparation for getting back on schedule. I anticipate getting back to my regular once every two-week rhythm no later than the end of July.
It’s time for a short break from our usual format. No, it’s not a retrospective post, although I have done that before. (Now that I think of it, I should do another one soon.) This break is due to personal change resulting in a lack of research and writing time the last two weeks. That change? I’ll get there in a minute. First I want to share what is sure to be a great interview with you.
taoty – freedigitalphotos.net
Marcus Blankenship will interview Gil Broza on Thursday, May 7, between 2-3pm PT / 5-6pm ET. (Google Hangout or Youtube available.) The interview is centered around Gil’s upcoming book The Agile Mindset. I’ll start by telling you that if you haven’t read The Human Side of Agile you need to. The first value in the Agile Manifesto is People. This book helps remind us of that. The next thing I’ll tell you is that I’ve been allowed time with a preview version of The Agile Mindset and it goes deeper into every part of the manifesto. I’ve started a similar track with my Back to the Basics series, but Gil goes to the next level with it. If you’ve plateaued with your Agile implementation this book will help you look at your work differently and get past that. I look forward to the interview and hope you check it out as well.
The other thing I want to share this week is that I’m moving. Not the website, actual me. As of July I will be in the Denver/Colorado Springs area. Whether you want to investigate Agile for your company or bring your teams to the next level I would love to discuss how I can help. Alternately, if you know anyone looking for an Agile Coach, Scrum Master, or a Project Manager in an Agile environment please let me know. My résumé and a cover letter are on the about page.
Summer break has really snuck up on me this year. As a result I have failed to finish the next Back to the Basics post. Here’s hoping I find time to finish it this week.
I am learning a lot about Agile. Most of it I learn by reading. I also learn by writing. Each post I put here forces me to reign in my thoughts so I can share them cohesively. This is one of my primary reasons for having a blog.
This blog in particular though has more reason for being. One goal I have is for this to be a community. It is called Our Agile Journey, not My Agile Journey, for a reason. There are not many places where Agilists can congregate without being tied to a particular type of Agile. I would like to see a forum someday. I would really like to have other people contribute though.
Maybe you don’t have a blog of your own. Maybe you have one, but it is tied to your company and not a good place to put certain things you would like to share. Maybe you feel you don’t have enough to start your own blog, but would still like to give back. This could be the place to do it.
This is not a place I want to commercialize. No advertorial’s or straight advertisements. Links that may generate revenue are ok, but they need to be relevant. (Such as to a book, class, or business page.) The point here is to give back to the community, not create the next Agile Alliance.
It could be a single guest post. It could be a mini-series. It could be weekly, or even daily postings. It can be attributed to you, a pseudonym, or anonymous. Every author that wants one will get an about page. From there they can link back to their site or their business.
The details are a little fuzzy but will be worked out as the need arises. The important part is that it remains a place to share about our journeys. We can then learn from each other as we teach each other.
If you are interested please contact me via the “contact me” link above, or via any of the methods available on the “about me” page.
Six months is a long time to wait for a retrospective. It is possibly the most important part of any Agile process or methodology. It’s right in the Manifesto: Responding to Change. In fact, the 12 Principles stop just short of calling it a retrospective, “At regular intervals, the team reflects on how to become more effective, then tunes and adjusts its behavior accordingly.” To be fair, this retrospective is different. This one is not for the company where I work, it is for this blog. Continue reading
I’m taking a break this week and possibly next. I didn’t want to just disappear for two weeks though. I leave you with a short simple thought.
As an Agilist I have a mindset I approach projects and planning with. I go beyond just projects with it though. It is the same approach I use in direct development of software. I use the same mindset in setting up my work space and picking the tools I use to do my job.
I even take this mindset beyond the workplace. In parenting two preschoolers an Agile mindset is essential. Imagine taking a road trip with preschoolers. What approach would work better? Creating a strict plan completely built up front with deviation only allowed in extreme circumstances or creating a loose plan with room for adjustment made available?
This is the Agile mindset. A mistake many make is in thinking the Agile mindset is about taking that road trip with planning limited to a vague idea of where you want to end up. In reality it is planning the important parts of the road trip (destination, overnight stays) and allowing for the details (gas stops, meal times) to be worked out as close as practical to the time they occur.
So practice this mindset over the Holidays. Go ahead and have a plan for visiting family, for how the evenings and mornings will go with your family. At the same time, be ready for things to change. Be OK with the fact that there are things about the time you don’t yet know. Allow reasonable change to occur. Sometimes, even the end goal will change by the time you get there.
Don’t just use Agile practices at work, start to really be Agile. Become an Agilist.
I have been a software developer since June 2008. Before that I spent almost 5 years working my way from part-time computer support to Systems/Network Administrator & IT Team Lead of a 500 person multiple campus company. Before that I did 2 years as a phone support technician. With over 12 years of IT industry experience spread across both system administration and software development I see IT in a broader scope than most.
Now I am becoming something more. I am an Agilist. I am moving on to project management. I am pushing positive change within my team, group, and company. I am looking to provide the best solutions for delivering the most value to organizations in the shortest practical time. I believe that even as I move from implementing Agile to teaching Agile to others I will never be done learning it.
This is not my journey alone. This is our journey. As you learn from me I will also learn from you. Together we will constantly refine what it being Agile means in our organizations. One person’s right choice today could be another’s wrong choice tomorrow. We will always strive to make the best choice we can with the information we have while accepting new information to the last practical moment. Join me. Let us take Our Agile Journey together.
Adam Myhr, PMI-ACP
On Twitter @OurAgileJourney