Author: A Narasimhan

Improving Agility – Raising the bar

In every organization where I have coached several teams for periods of six months or more, I have found a few teams which stand out. It could be due to a dynamic Scrum Master or a sensible and knowledgeable Product Owner or a few motivated smart team members. These are the teams which keep approaching me pro-actively almost every sprint for something or the other even after the completion of my coaching for them. I have always enjoyed spending time with such teams as it has huge learning for me as well. It has given me excellent opportunities to...

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CHOW #83- Help the Scrum Master handle this situation

Krishna is the Scrum Master of Svatantra, a team known for its Agility and efficiency. He and his team were coached by external coaches for a while and now they have stopped coming. He has empowered his team and several members can moderate Agile ceremonies and hence he has taken up some additional responsibilities in the organization. Of late, he has observed that sometime the daily scrum which used to happen on time does not seem to happen and some times it is very informal and not what he was used to. Some action items from retrospectives seem to...

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Importance of Coaching Office in Sustaining Agile Transformation

Agile Transformation is not just putting in place a set of ceremonies and processes but it should bring about a change in the culture of the organization. It is found inevitable in organizations that such transformation efforts need expert coaching at all levels. Mostly companies hire external consultants to help in such initiatives. But how long can it continue? When the assignment comes to end, companies are faced with a great challenge to sustain the transformation. Some of the reasons why sustenance can be so challenging are: 1. Identifying a leader who is passionate about Agile culture Since it...

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CHOW #71– Unlimited Uses of Limiting WIP

BlockBusters is a team using Kanban. They have been getting noticed of late for missed SLAs and defective deliveries. There were some changes in the team as new members have joined the team and some additional support work has got added to their existing work. In the last couple of retrospectives team members have brought out several points about some of them not being aware of all aspects of work, some members pointing out that they could have helped and so on. It seems to be clear there is scope for improvement in several aspects. Some action items identified...

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Unlimited Uses of Limiting WIP

Limiting Work In Process (WIP) is very important for Agile teams and is highly recommended for Kanban teams as they are focused on identifying and removing blocks and thereby improving flow. Here are some benefits of limiting WIP observed in teams I have coached. Improved flow The first and most talked about among the benefits of limiting WIP is improvement in the flow of work.  Accumulating work items in the value stream chokes the flow as can be observed easily. It leads to several difficulties – priorities getting changed due to most priority items not getting completed, overheads of...

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