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Encapsulate Collection – Become part of a supportive team who inspire, celebrate and learn together Collapse Hierarchy – Build relationships inside and outside the team, share your passions with all Remove Middle Man  – Go direct to your customer, understand their needs, loves, frustrations Extract Method – When valuable patterns evolve encapsulate and name them for all to share Replace Magic Number with […]

An agile team that finds its groove is a precious thing. A group of smart diverse people, passionate about their shared purpose, openly collaborating and continually experimenting can do amazing things. They don’t need managing in the traditional sense so what can leaders/managers who work with these teams do to help them? Don’t tell Ask? […]

From the outside, development projects of a reasonable size look painfully slow. We fail to appreciate the hidden complexity, too comfortable with our simple vision that ignores the awkward details. Desperate to speed the team up to the pace we expect, we tighten the screws, telling them “there just isn’t time” to think about more design or […]

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I keep meeting development teams frustrated by the hierarchical organisation around them. Some realise their predicament, others blame. There’s nothing they can do about it alone; generations of hierarchies have developed a strong sense of self preservation. But when there’s a will to change, that goes deep, wide and high enough, we have an opportunity. What can […]

Do you code for yourself? Do you do it for the love of creating or the satisfaction of crafting something elegant? Do you do it for the discovery? Do you do it for the money, for the family you’re raising or the house you’re building? Do you code for your team? Do you share a […]

Why does the dog wag its tail? Because the dog is smarter than the tail. If the tail were smarter, it would wag the dog. When I ask any development team what’s the hardest thing about agile development they almost invariably say it’s the business. It’s the “Us and Them” that’s the hardest to break […]

Product Owners’s navigate a precarious tightrope between human and developer logic. Wonderful ones inspire, woeful ones frustrate. They’re invariably caught in a political maelstrom, making a tough job tougher, but it’s a job that makes all the difference to team and product. Good POs breath curiosity. When my reaction is WTF, I see others courageously putting themselves in […]

I’ve been questioning my principles lately. One that’s been troubling me is a principle behind the Agile Manifesto: “Agile processes promote sustainable development. The sponsors, developers, and users should be able to maintain a constant pace indefinitely.” I always read this as “don’t start working late when things get busy”. I worked in a company that were […]

They’re young, passionate, excitable, humble and open. They’ve few preconceptions about how things should work and a hunger to discover how things can. I fell into this, and old friend suggested we talk. They wanted to explore ‘Agile’. We talked principles, they asked for answers, I suggested experiments. We’ve been exploring together for half a […]

I spent the day yesterday interviewing programmers for a new start-up near Bristol. It’s a job I love. I’m always intrigued to hear about peoples careers and how the approach the challenges we present. For me recruiting a programmer has to start with code. I don’t really care about the CV and the application process […]