Hi :) When it comes to effective teams, there's always lots of things one should experiment, and from my experience implementing small consistent changes in both the team and also in each individual, has been the most successful approach. I believe from my experience that one cannot expect to change the whole system without first influencing parts of … Continue reading Effective teams -individual focus with Daily Goals
Your work is not just your work anymore. Probably it never was. Your work is also your life. Probably the biggest part of your life. But your work is not you: it is also you. Having that in mind here are some notes for you my dear me: Sometimes you trust people too much. People … Continue reading Notes to self
Hi :) Christmas is gone but I have a gift to you, a rather small one, but as it happens with almost anything in life, great things come in small packages (cof cof cof) . I'll write about some small improvements I've done before that actually helped my teams a lot in finding their path … Continue reading Scrum Master Tip #7 – Small improvements for greater Scrum teams
So after writing about how I prepare my templates (Creating your own Scrum Cards) for the team to write down User Stories, Bugs, Tasks and Improvements, I got some requests to make my template available.
So here it is : US-Bugs-Task-ToPrint (excel format).
Normally I print them using the coloured paper I want (the colours I use are in the Sheet name) and then just cut them in batches using a paper cutter.
In case you you don’t have coloured paper you can just fill out the cells with the color you want and print it in a Color Printer.
Hope it makes your life easier :)
Let me know if I can help you or provide something useful for you.
Hi All :) I just got this challenge today, from a colleague of mine, to convert my post 5 dysfunctions of a team into something positive we could show people without scare them. So rather than just posting on walls why we suck, the challenge is to post something that would make us think about … Continue reading Turning Dysfunctions into Actions – Fighting the 5 Dysfunctions of a Team
Hi :) Today I want to share with you part of what I've learned with this amazing book from Patrick Lencioni -The Five dysfunctions of a Team - which I truly recommend you to read. Doesn't matter if you are a Scrum Master, developer, tester, manager or other, as long if you are a person capable of … Continue reading Dysfunctions of a Team
Hi :) I'm back. While going through one of my presentations I found this slide with such important information that I want to go through it again and above all share it with you. It's not something new, but I'll just write it down here, even for my own sake.. for those days when I … Continue reading Ways of communicating, how we learn
Hi Last week I had the pleasure of helping to prepare an Open Space session together with Jorgen Hesselberg after his trip to Europe for his talk at xp2013. I though of sharing some tips with you on how to set up an Open Space Session, and who knows?, I may be able to give … Continue reading Open Space – how to?
Hi :) So after writing about how I prepare my templates (Creating your own Scrum Cards) for the team to write down User Stories, Bugs, Tasks and Improvements, I got some requests to make my template available. So here it is : US-Bugs-Task-ToPrint (excel format). Normally I print them using the coloured paper I want … Continue reading Creating your Scrum Cards – Free Template
Hi! Quick Tip Today: Creating a User Story Card You can use index cards and write on them, of if you are like me: a bit lazy but you like things pretty visible and kind of organized, you just have to do some tuned cards in a text editor (Word for 75% population), print them … Continue reading Creating your own Scrum Cards
Hi! After writing about Sprint backlogs - how you can create one and why it should be the big elephant in the room, I remembered we rarely see people talking about the nasty legacy bugs the scrum team gets during the sprint and how to fit them inside the sprint. First a disclaimer: when I … Continue reading Dealing with Legacy bugs in Scrum – THE BUGLOG!
This one will be short. Just want sharing something I just found out. I realised every time I get up of my desk to pick up a water, a coffee, go to the printer, whatever.. I always also find someone looking for something, and meanwhile I also found out that I always manage to help … Continue reading About Usefulness
Hi :) Today a practical tip for building a Sprint Backlog aka Scrum Board. Why should we have a board? The board main function is to allow team to visualize remaining work (tracking) and facilitate daily synchronization (Re-plan). Everyday the team gets together, looks at the board (which contains the committed work) and the team … Continue reading Building your Sprint Backlog / Scrum Board
Hi :) Here are some thoughts, based on my experience, about being a coach. I realized it's not about technology, processes and frameworks. It's not about teaching people how to do stuff, although it helps if you can show them a new way or help them finding a solution. But that is not at all, … Continue reading Being a Coach
Scrum masters are not meant to lead (lead technically or in terms of business), they are meant to serve. And serving has different flavours. This 'epiphany' started with a 15 seconds chat with a fellow Scrum Master. - " Should you be a leader? "- I asked the scrum master - " Of course"- He … Continue reading Leaders and Servants – Tips for the Scrum master
I'm the darkest hour I bring trouble and pain My words are sour I'll make you play my game. Come to me with no stubbon mindset I'll break you and your assumptions like the dawn by the sunset My voice stands against interruptions But I try to heal, and all I get is hurt. I … Continue reading Ode to the Scrum Master
I wrote several times on the importance of a team to find their common ground, their beliefs, the so called Team Values, so crucial if you want to grow a Team. Today I'm diving in for a new perspective on these. Things change. Daily. Every hour, minute and second. And Business changes with it. This … Continue reading Building Teams- The power of Values
It's time for me to finally publish and share my famous 7 Feet Under model. WARNING: this post contains strange things as Zombies, dirt, graves, stupidity, sarcasm and some other weird thoughts that may hirt the reader. enter at your own peril. The '7 Feet under model' is a simple visual summary of my observations … Continue reading The 7 Feet Under model – losing good people
Hi This was a draft post I had here for a long time, it's a rainy dark day here in berlin today. Looks like a nice day to release this post :). The Deliver Crap Project Sometimes people forget their purpose while creating products or services: to serve a need. I would go further and … Continue reading The Deliver Crap Project
Dear reader, How often when leading we use good examples to support us? How often when talking, while trying to explain something, we use that person (which we know it's already engaged) as an example to support to our case? It's human, we always seek for supporters. That's why we try to be surrounded by … Continue reading Engage your team – seeking and finding followers
Hi there :)! Back in February I wrote this post about Retrospectives, giving hints on whom, when, why and how to do it, plus some references for you to learn more about it. The thing is: I may not have focused something really really important: People HATE retrospectives, your job is to make them have … Continue reading Scrum Master TIP #6 – Retrospectives (2)
Wikipedia says that PERCEPTION is.. ..The organization, identification, and interpretation of sensory information in order to fabricate a mental representation through the process of transduction, which sensors in the body transform signals from the environment into encoded neural signals And how important this is! … Perception simply defines the shape of the world for you. … Continue reading Perceptions – How important in a TEAM
When you work with a team of smart people, deadlines can actually be positive thing. But there's a catch: deadline cannot be fake. If the deadline is something with meaning for end users (not just for the sake of plans- although we all understand the importance of those), the team will take a responsible approach … Continue reading Deadlines: a boost
Key indicators of team happiness was something that struck me the other day. Out of nothing, as always, something I heard while walking through the corridors and that made this click on my head. Then I started observing some other things happening around me that also were a sign of team's happiness. There is more stuff … Continue reading Key indicators of Team happiness
Hi there! WAZZUP ?!? :D Long time no see, it's how they say...when you are having fun you don't have time to tell about it :). But this is not what has brought me here today. today I have good news and A GIFT for all the people in the agile community. This … Continue reading A gift for the Agile Community
Today was a long nice day. I got home tired, I talked a lot, I listened a lot, I saw a lot and I want to do a lot. Just some minutes ago I twitered : '' note to self: never assume things. Specially when they are 'obvious'. There's no such thing as obvious.All depends where … Continue reading Never assume- Always ASK
Here you go, long time no see...but I'm back. And I have 2 great tips for you :). First: Read my dearest friend (@pintolaranja) new magazine on software TIPS and, right from there- Second: take this new amazing software and implement your own Pomodoro technique : > 20 Cubed (yes, they say it also helps with your … Continue reading The new Pomodoro
Some weeks ago there I was with this team doing a retrospective. A team with no appointed Scrum master, luckily a team with a Team Leader, a true leader with an open, honest, transparent and human mindset. He was leading the retrospective, something he actually does pretty well. At the end I asked them how … Continue reading Changing Teams Changes you
Retrospectives are probably the most important event for Teams, and probably the less valued. What I'm writing now is just a glimpse on retrospectives.. just a minor part of it. I truly advise you to read more about it (check bellow recommended book). What are Retrospectives? Retrospectives are the right time for … Continue reading Scrum Master TIP #5 – Retrospectives
Some weeks ago I challenged teams to rotate the organization of Retrospectives among Team members. These are teams that don't have assigned Scrum Masters, they have Team leaders. My vision: Share responsibility, tasks and take the chance to learn about it a bit more. My arguments: 1. While being an organizer, one will intuitively search … Continue reading IQ? Nahhh..we need EQ!
How it started Today I was working out some slides I have on Agile & Scrum Intro... and I have this slide that describes what a Scrum Team is: 5 to 9 people Cross-functional (Programmers+ testers+ UX+..) Members should be full-time Self-organized Collaborative Autonomous, regarding how to achieve commitments Self-managed Stable – same team throughout the product sprints Negotiates commitment with … Continue reading From 1 to Many: Simple things about Teams.
"If you find yourself concentrating on the technology rather than the sociology, you're like the vaudeville character who loses his keys on a dark street and looks for them on the adjacent street because, as he explains, "The light is better there." " From Peopleware
A few weeks ago I was invited to drive an interesting workshop. Around 30 people were put together in a big room with the objective of doing this Root Cause Analysis regarding their own behavior – we were trying to find out what’s missing for us to be more focused, committed and successful regarding our … Continue reading From Facilitator to Soup Master
Two of the three most powerful things about scrum are the Inspect and Adapt chances we have constantly. Although sometimes we can't see how important this 2 things are, they actually are the heart of scrum. It's really easy to misunderstand this 2 things with retrospective. Most people would think Inspection and adaptation is something … Continue reading Scrum Master Tip #4 : Daily Scrums
Being a Scrum Master means a lot, if you do the right things. Being a Scrum Master is like being a leader: you won't drive the car, but you'll set on the passengers seat and you'll help the driver take the best route and be prepared for the risks of driving: without of course scaring … Continue reading Scrum Master Tip #3 : Explain, Exemplify and Pratice
I know this is a question that puzzles you as much as it puzzles me. I know you need people around you to change, or at least to embrace the idea that the world is constantly evolving. I know how frustrating it is to know an answer (right or wrong- it doesn't matter actually) to … Continue reading Changes- why they are so difficult
What are user stories A user story is simply something a user wants. A user story is a very high-level definition of a requirement, containing just enough information so that the developers can produce a reasonable estimate of the effort to implement it. In short, user stories are very slim and high-level requirements artifacts. Why … Continue reading Agilitypedia – User Stories
I'm from the north of Portugal. That isn't good nor it is bad, but it means something. People from the north have a temper. Also they say exactly what they think and, they mean exactly they say. This may be a problem, specially now that I'm working on the south. Let me tell you about the … Continue reading Did you say Increments or Excrements?
What is that? Definition of Ready (DoR) is the sum of conditions under which User Stories (US), Product Backlog (PB) or Sprint Backlog (SB), must be so that the team can start the work. Definition of Ready is also known as Readiness Criteria. Let me explain with an example :) Example Imagine my team noticed … Continue reading Definition of ready
What is Velocity? The truth is: Velocity is Velocity. And Velocity is measured..as velocity is. How do you measure your velocity while driving? (Considering the velocity counter is broken) :) You are driving for the last 2 hours, you've done 160km until now, so you know your average velocity is 80km per hour. If your … Continue reading Velocity
Have you ever seen a movie called Inception? Watch it. It's the most valuable advice I could ever give to you. You need to know, and to practice, inception on those around if you want things to be Agile :). Have a nice week!
Today I had this marvelous experience, we called it Innovation day. A bunch of strangers from the same company (yes this may happen in big companies) stuck together in groups to implement an idea. We didn't knew the Idea, we read about it in a corporate tool, but the author was not available. Fortunately it … Continue reading Deliver? Piece of cake!
It's a frequent thing for teams to say some things weren't delivered because Product backlog Items weren't properly defined. "The PO doesn't know what he wants". It doesn't mean that this is always true :) specially if the team is still in a Blaming stage. But it happens. If you work in a big company, … Continue reading Scrum Master Tip #2 : Ready? Set, GO
- Where are my plans? Resources? Reports? Status meetings? Tools? Performance Evaluation? Incentives? Punishments? Rules? Paper? Charts!????? - This winter, the pigs won't get their way. Angry managers, in a company near you.
I still get amazed when someone prefers to write an email and while getting no answer chooses to write more emails referring to that same old shitty email no one obviously read. While doing that we can see or imagine flames getting out of his eyes and saliva like mad dogs. Why choose f2f talks? … Continue reading No talk, lets use better stuff you nerds
This is my first post on Scrum Master tips. I decided to write tips and hints on stuff. At least I may be doing some good to the world by sharing my own experiences :) Tip #1 Definition of done Definition of done is one of the most hard things to get right in scrum. … Continue reading Scrum Master Tip #1 : How do you want your steak?
Just read Implementing Beyond Budget from Bjarte Bosgnes (great book I strongly recommend you, specially if you are managing budgets or people) and I want to leave with you some of the ideas I found about leadership: We need more Leadership and less Management - people are hungry for good leadership: direction, inspiration and support … Continue reading About Leadership
For a moment in my life I truly believed that to be usefull to the people I work with I just needed to fully apply my time in learning and searching for knowledge. It's true that one thing leads to another and so knowledge grows in one's head. But still this was never enough. It … Continue reading Know the one that walks with you
I want to share with you one of the most interesting post I've seen about why we do things the way we do it, why is hard for us to change from waterfall and why we started it anyway. Read it, it's worthy. http://www.beyondagile.com/blog/we-just-cant-afford-taylorism-anymore-now-what.html
Still on Agile transformation: Dealing with complexity and accepting it, is the only way to reduce it's own risks. Let the system respond to and with it's own behavior, conflicts and weakness. Companies are complex systems based on even complexer systems: humans. (We all know that already) Like in societies, we need to let … Continue reading Agile transformations? No! Agile Revolution