Where I Think “Agile” is Headed, Part 2: Where Does Management Fit?

In Part 1, I wrote about how “Agile” is not a silver bullet and is not right for every team and every product. This post is about how management fits into agile approaches. Too often, managers think “agile” is for others, specifically teams of people. Teams need to figure out how to manage their WIP, …

Product Roles, Part 4: Product Orientation and the Role of Projects

Many people in the agile community promote a product orientation over a project orientation. That’s possible because an organization has product or feature teams. That works until you have more products than teams. That’s when you might still need projects to accomplish everything. If you keep teams together, you can still use projects in a …

Help Managers Visualize Their Problems

I’ve been working with several managers at organizations large and small, who want to capitalize their software “earlier.” These managers have some strongly-held beliefs about the people: People are resources Resources can multitask on several projects at a time If “headquarters” does the difficult work, you can move the “grunt” work to lower wage areas …

Divide and Conquer Creates Need for Management Control

Several recent clients want help with these problems: Estimation isn’t accurate. Because the estimation isn’t accurate, management can’t predict when they can release anything. Managers can’t manage the capitalization (a way to move from expensing software to capitalizing it). Teams can’t seem to ever deliver a finished feature. The work in progress everywhere is quite large. …

Starting a Product Organization Transformation, Part 6

I’ve been thinking about my clients who’ve had success moving from a project-based/resource-efficiency organization to a product-based/flow efficiency organization. They had these things in common: A senior person made it safe for the managers to create experiments. They created very small experiments (either managers or teams, or together). The senior manager often asked a question …

Possible Organization Changes for a Product Approach, Part 5

How do we move from a project-based organization towards a product organization? There are at least two systems of work we need to change: The management system and the culture of management How the teams work and their team culture. I’m not sure it’s that simple to explain. There might be more systems I don’t …