This category contains 19 posts

How #Empathy is fixing #Canada

I’ve talked about how Empathy is so important in understanding client needs in the past, how Empathy is important to understand what a client really requires and needs. The other side of Empathy is understanding what your team requires. Ultimately, Empathy results in Prosocial behaviour. Prosocial is a term I only recently came across. Let’s … Continue reading

Acknowledgment as Motivation

Recently at Prairie Dev Con I gave a talk on #NoEstimates and part of the discussion centered on the practice of using estimates as motivation. Using estimates as motivation *may* be effective in the short term, but in the long term I believe it is dangerous and more likely to negatively affect motivation. As an … Continue reading

Running a Positive Retrospective (and avoiding a gripe session)

A few times recently I’ve been asked about retrospectives – specifically how to keep them from becoming a gripe session. Here are a few things that I’ve found effective: 1. Start with the positive¬† While we certainly want to talk about and address any issues, I like to talk about the positive things that have … Continue reading

My #NoEstimates disappointment

I must admit I usually come right in the middle between No Estimates proponents and the traditional estimators. I usually like the process of estimating on my projects, but I certainly see the downsides of such estimates. I also do think estimates and no estimates and Lean Start up are not mutually exclusive. I can … Continue reading

On the radio today…

Today I had the honor of being on the radio with Dahlia for CJOB. We were talking about investing in people, namely our local entrepreneurs. A recent article from the Harvard Business Review talks about the power of a common purpose. Often different players who would normally never have anything to do with each other … Continue reading

Top 4 qualities for a leader/manager #agile #pmot

I’ve seen quite a few articles recently on the qualities to be a good leader, manager, and Project Manager. Most recently, I read an excellent article by Liza Wood on “Should you become a Manager?”. Highly recommended. I thought I’d add my opinions to those already out there on what I feel are the top … Continue reading

Everything I needed to know about teams I learned from Dungeons and Dragons #PMOT

It occurred to me that the five key principles of teams that I learned early on were taught to me at an early age by Dungeons and Dragons. Now I’m not talking about any movie or video game knock-off of Dungeons and Dragons, ¬†but the original Dungeons and Dragons in-person game. You know the one … Continue reading

2 Rules of being an #Agile #Coach

I see that many times people talk about being an Agile Coach, but I fear they are leaving out some very important facts on what a successful coach is. The comparison to a sports coach is very easy. Both coaches are working with teams and also in a very dynamic and fluid situation. The definition … Continue reading

Facilitating a retrospective with 50 people in an hour

As one of the volunteers at Agile 2012 I was honoured to be asked to facilitate the volunteer retrospective. There were a few constraints that made this retrospective challenging. First, due to our volunteer responsibilities we had just under an hour to eat lunch and complete the retrospective. Second, there are about 50 volunteers – … Continue reading

In pursuit of better, not best

I realize that many of you already scowl when you hear anyone talk about ‘best practices’. Instead of adding to that discussion, I’d like to share a short story with you about someone who influenced me to keep looking for better and to never assume that I’ve reached ‘best.’ I can still picture Mr. Loewen … Continue reading