I mentioned earlier that one of the sources I’ve been reading and enjoying is Jurgen Appelo’s posts about agile management. I’ve been reading his posts for a while, since the time he was the CTO of a dutch company. I really like the way he connects agile methodologies and complex adaptive systems theory.
I’ve mentioned his work in 4 posts:
Now he is 100% focused on his agile management coach career. He recently launched a book entitled “Management 3.0: Leading Agile Developers, Developing Agile Leaders“.
He also provides Agile Management courses.
Last week he was in São Paulo providing his management course at AdaptWorks and I had the opportunity to attend his course.
I’ll make a brief summary of the course below, as a way for me to review what we discussed during this two days. However, I strongly advise any leader, even from non software related areas or companies, to attend. Even though the ideas and insights Jurgen provides during the course are very good and he is an excellent presenter, you can read them in his blog and in his book. What is great in this course is the opportunity to practice and discuss the ideas and insights with Jurgen and the other attendees and the chance to exchange experiences.
After a quick introduction about the ideal size of a group and quick introductions of the attendees, Jurgen explained quickly about agile software development and then introduced Martie, the Management 3.0 representation with the 6 aspects of management that we should take care if we want to be good managers.
Then Jurgen explained briefly about the theory of complex systems and the types of fallacies we may fall into if we don’t use complex systems thinking when managing teams.
To end the introductory section, we did a group exercise where we analyzed some situations to identify what was the fallacy in play.
When discussing about people, Jurgen talked about intrinsic and extrinsic motivation and presented us with the 10 intrinsic desires:
Exercise time: we analyzed individually how we are in our current jobs in terms of each of these 10 intrinsic desires.
Then Jurgen presented some tools to helps us know what is important for the people in our team:
Group exercise: we had to use the practices below to get to know 10 important facts about Ellen, a member of a fictional team managed by us.
Here Jurgen presented the 7 delegation levels I already mentioned in a previous post.
Group exercise: delegation poker where we were presented with different situations where we needed to figure out the appropriate delegation level.
A leader must:
The 4 I’s to cope with the Tragedy of the Commons:
3 kinds of purpose (or goal) for a team:
Exercise time: we had to define a purpose for the course.
First Jurgen described how we can improve.
Then he described how we can measure our improvement.
Exercise time: we had to define KPIs according to the matrix above to our organization.
We can have two types of team organization, functional or cross-functional, it depends on how often team members need to communicate. Product managers, user experience designers and software developers need to communicate all the time about the project or product they are working on, so they need to sit together in a cross functional team. HR people on the other hand need to talk constantly to other HR people so they need to sit in a functional HR team.
Jurgen also advised we should hire generalizing specialists, promote informal leadership and widen job titles.
Exercise time: Meddlers.
How can I…
In order to change things we need to consider:
Culture changes only after you have successfully altered people’s actions, after the new behavior produces some group benefit for a period of time.
John P. Kotter, Leading Change
Exercise time: each member of the group tell one story with she needs ideas on how to changeï¿¼, then the group select from the list above and discuss.
This is just a brief summary of the 2-day course, as a way for me to review what we discussed during. However, I strongly advise any leader, even from non software related areas or companies, to attend. Even though the ideas and insights Jurgen provides during the course are very good and he is an excellent presenter, you can read them in his blog and in his book. What is great in this course is the opportunity to practice and discuss the ideas and insights with Jurgen and the other attendees and the chance to exchange experiences.