Lean Thinking

08 October 2013


Written by Published in Agile

Normally, the phrase 'project vision" or "project goal" elicits a collective groan from any team in which it is used. This is because project vision statements are generally... well... crap. Whoever puts them together inevitably feels it necessary to slip into management speak and string a bunch of fairly meaningless weasel words together – "we will proactively leverage our synergies to achieve outcomes consistent with our values...". Lots of words but no actual meaning. No wonder people greet them with a groan.

But at the same time, the team needs to have a cohesive picture of what it is they are working towards. They need to know what the goal is. More than that, the team will do much better at reaching the goal if they really believe that the goal is worthwhile. They need to see the goal as a thing to be desired, a thing to be strived for. What do we call such a goal? Well.. that would be the project vision, wouldn't it. This leads us to a dilemma. The team needs a vision to strive towards, but vision statements are so universally awful.

06 October 2013

New Website!

Written by Published in Blog

The two or three of you who read this blog may have noticed a hiatus recently. That's because a brand new website was being built, and posting to the blog would have meant keeping the live site and the new one in development in sync. As I'm basically a lazy person, I decided to wait 'til the new one was up. The break has been longer than I intended; the new site was supposed to be up weeks (*ahem*...months) ago but with life and stuff, things slipped. But now it's up. It's finished and it's fantastic (with responsive design for mobiles and everything).

Regular posting will now resume...



16 August 2013

Self Organisation

Written by Published in Agile

In the Agile world, we (and I am certainly no exception) talk a lot about Self Organisation, but what does that mean? What is this thing called Self Organisation?

Written by Published in Agile

Let’s look again at our team from the last post and take a closer look at the Team Lead. It’s easy to see how Fred got into the situation he was in. The job of Team Lead is very unclear in an Agile world. One of the agile principles is that all team members are equal so what does a team lead do? I usually recommend that teams don’t have a team lead. That forces them to look after themselves rather than relying on a team lead to do it for them.  Most large organisations though insist on having a Team Lead for every team. That’s OK. We can live with it. We just need to work out what an agile team lead does.


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