Agilectics – Retrospective #1

It was a Whatsapp message from Anoop which triggered the whole process.

He introduced himself as a participant of one of my Agile workshops held in Kochi, almost seven years ago. His name didn’t ring a bell instantly but the moment I saw his photograph, I could place him. After his tryst with a few small and large organizations, Anoop had started his own company and presently works with a team of around 40 engineers, with networks in the US, the UK and Africa.

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Anoop and his partners wanted to incorporate the Agile work culture in their team. That sounded great.

Firstly, their team was small and they were yet to form a work culture of their own. They did follow some Scrum practices without truly understanding the intended purpose and benefits. The second aspect was their willingness to listen –  a critical success factor when embarking on an Agile journey. Most of their team was on new development work and the rest on support activities. The first step was to achieve a common Agile awareness. We began with scrum training for all, which covered the Agile manifesto and practices. The development team took up Scrum using Jira. For the support team, we recommended Kanban as it is a continuous flow. These steps swiftly introduced them to immediate benefits, which is important for any startup. Now, they are an impressively self-organized group. We could achieve this goal fast because of the team constitution and their willingness to learn and experiment.

Movement from work allocation to work volunteering is the biggest challenge I have faced in many other organizations. Here, I was lucky to get a Scrum master with a strong conviction and he was committed to having the right method implemented, with the support of his team. Post the second sprint, their productivity is on upward track, their customer is happier and the team has a better work-life balance. We are currently focusing on the design and deployment of an Agile performance appraisal system which is in line with the agile principles and values. As a first step towards this, we have delivered a framework for personal goal setting, prioritization and time management. Will blog about this in detail after the roll-out.

Some of the key aspects of this particular team:

  • Highly technical
  • Good implementation of Agile using Scrum
  • Jira tool provides excellent transparency to all stakeholders
  • They are honest about what they can do and where they need improvement
  • Young, enthusiastic minds with a willingness to listen, experiment and learn.

For more about this team Contact us 

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