Agile, Business Agility, Events

Highlights about the AgileCamp Dallas Edition 2017

Hello Everyone!

2017 has been a great year full of good challenges! New clients, several sessions (design thinking, innovation, agile workshops), new countries, new cultures, new friends, talkings and approximately 600 people whom have attended those cool events I was part of but prior to year´s end, I want to share great memories from the AgileCamp that took place in Dallas by December 1st.

This is a special event to me not only by its dimension and level of importance within the innovation and agile global community but as well as milestone in my personal life in sharing the stage and meeting such amazing people that I admire such as Scott Ambler, Ahmed Sidky and David Marquet.

In this opportunity, I did talk about #innovation #agility practices and the agile mind set in driving a culture of innovation mixing up my background in music performance and composition.

InnovationAgilityThe focus was in to incorporate such practices and use them in a disciplined way to create possibilities, take actions, get results and hopefully generate new beliefs in an iterative way.

I had the great pleasure to meet Ahmed Sidky, Head of Development Management, Rio Games. Mr. Sidky has delivered a great talking about Evolving Agile Leadership at Riot Games. Amazing story of challenging convention. This is the legendary game company behind the League of Legends which by the way I am an addicted player!

Scott Ambler has presented about How to Overcome the Challenges of Adopting Agile in Established Enterprises. I follow Scott´s work for years and he is one of the creators of DAD – Disciplined Agile Delivery along with Mark Lines. Unfortunately, I could not attend Scott´s talking as I was presenting at the same time but glad we were able to catch up and share the same table during lunch!

Finally, but not least, the great Stacey Louie, AgileCamp Founder and Managing Director at Hyperdrive Agile Leadership. I loved the event´s format! Thanks for having me in to share my experience and thoughts.

Thanks to the volunteer´s team and special thanks to David Tochukwu and Arnel Cayabyad! Long live to the AgileCamp future editions!

Take care! Raf!

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Agile, Business Agility, Enterpreneurship, Events

Highlights about the Congreso en Direcíon de Proyectos Guadalajara 2017

I know it has been a while since I have talked about #innovation #agility practices in this wonderful conference organized by the PMI Guadalajara Chapter but I could not let it go without sharing some highlights from amazing talkings that I was blessed to hear!  Special thanks to my friend Miguel Castañeda for the invitation to be part of this remarkable event!

By September 29th, the day was beautiful and I have arrived one hour earlier at Auditorio Pedro Arrupe ITESO. I did register myself and set a couple of things prior to my talking. I did grab some coffee, hanged out with my friends from IBM México and meet folks from the PMI Guajajara Chapter: Mario Muñoz and Jose Luis Gomez

Regarding the first talking of the day, Alecia Hoobing did a great job in sharing cool stories about her experience within product management area. She has presented the 10 Core Values for Building Innovative Products and walk us through each powerful value and how to put it into action starting with ourselves! If you handle innovation in your work I do recommend you to print it out and attached it to the wall!

Secondly, Dr. Roberto Osorno Hinojosa, researcher and project manager at ITESO Jesuit University has presented in a very funny and graceful way about Open Innovation: Lessons from focusing on clients.

Dr. Roberto has shared great insights about the benefits of the open innovation. In general, we thought that innovation is related with the latest tech buzz thing but Roberto´s approach in showing how to do it using real local examples was quite impressive. Pretty much the same way as described in the Open Innovation Garage website: Effective, easy and affordable. Long live to the Open Innovation Garage!

The next talking was about Digital Era and how to manage such transformation presented by my friend Victor Hugo Estrada. What has caught my attention was how Vic did walk us through how the digital era and most importantly how to mix it all up nicely: Digital transformation, Design Thinking, Lean UX, Agile and Lean Optimization. Nice way to “fusion” it all together!

After Victor, I did present my thoughts on Innovation Agility practices in driving incremental and disruptive innovation. I have shared some approaches using real examples from the Relativity Theory, Frozen Food to the Ipod eras as well about how to shit your mind to looking for good problems instead of generating ton of new ideas without focus. In such scenario, collaboration is a must and you should distinguish where your organization are in terms of Collaboration vs Cooperation practices. It is big deal!

Then, how to apply some innovation agility practices in your day to day activities to unleash your creativity in order to generate positive impacts to your team, organization and your community.

And finally, I am glad I was on the stage prior to Mr. Kumamoto because he just rocked the place down! 🙂

What a great and powerful message about team working, collaboration and courage! Mr. Pedro Kumamoto is an activist, culture agent and he does represent the District 10 at the Congress of Jalisco Estate. He is the first independent candidate to win an election via popular representation. He is also an activist and culture.

Pedro has shared great stories about his journey until became a congress man. He talked about how his team used free online tools to manage pools, engage the community and the importance of having an engaged team that are willing to move mountains for a good cause. By the way, although Pedro Kumamoto did not mention about it, a ton of agile values and practices were presented as key aspects for a new agile way of working.

Stay tune for the next PMI gathering!Take care! Raf

Agile, Business Agility, Padawan´s series, Scrum

Padawan´s Series: Scrumban or Agile@Maintenance!

Yes! Getting back to the basics! Yes, I know it is not a brand-new topic but people often ask during my workshops about how to incorporate and adopt agile practices within their Technology maintenance projects.

Although the basic flow is very simple and nowadays everyone says ¨I know everything about Kanban¨ or ¨my team has mastered in using Kanban¨ then I do often realize people over-complicates its usage.

Kanban is Japanese word that translates to signboard in English. It was first developed and adopted by Toyota late in 1940s. It is a simple scheduling and demand management system used to create, support and deliver a set of products and solutions.

What are the initial steps in adopting a Kanban system in maintenance projects?

First, you need to define a basic workflow in reflecting a sequence of steps in producing something and it will be dependent on the work you are doing and the processes used by your organization.

What is a simple set of steps?

Basically, the set of steps should reflect the tasks your team is executing each day. Pretty simple steps as follow:

  • Initial/ To do:
  • In progress
  • To verify/To check
  • Done

How to visualize the work?

You and your team can visualize the work using a physical or a digital board. This visualization board is very effective for the team members within an organization, program or project that are using a kanban system.

You can stick a card or a post-it note and move them manually per the flow or use a digital solution depending on your needs. It is a special need for non-collocated teams or teams that may support more than one customer at the same time.

Today there are exceptional tools you can use such as:

or just use a physical board if your team is 100% collocated!

Now you have a workflow, a board system. What is next?

A key success factor in a kanban system is about determining priority and WIP (Work in Progress). There is a need to define a method of priority setting to guarantee that the most important tasks will be carried our first or as soon as possible.

On a kanban board the most important task cards or post-it notes are placed higher up the board and maybe with a color system that helps highlight the top items.

The priorities can be defined by one person such as a product owner, one experienced team member on the product or by a self-organizing team.

It is very important to establish work in progress limits. It does allow individuals applying this “pull system” to manage the level of multitasking.

Please notice:  A multitasking team may end up with concurrent activities that may impact the effectiveness of the work which means that an incomplete item should never be moved to a next step of the flow. Focused teams produce high quality products/solutions.

“Scrumban” or whatever name you want to use: How to get better to improve the process flow?

Now you have the demands organized per your flow and you can visualize them in the board. As time goes on, you will find ways to improve the way you and your team work. You can use daily stand up meetings to address and remove blockers as well promote team’s collaboration.

Prior to a planning discussion and after 2 or 3 weeks, in a fixed time box period, you may have a retrospective meeting to find out how to improve the current process.

As demands go up and down you can discuss about the WIP limits and the team may decide if there is need to adjust the limit. This approach can be adapted per your needs in supporting the business, program, project and organizations.

I want to hear your opinion!

Agile, Business Agility, Events

Business Agility 2017 in New York – Day 2 Review

Leading the Transformation

Second day and guess what? Amazing stories and insights about the transformation journey DBS has taken to emerge as a more agile organization by Paul Cobban. I still remember a reaction from someone from audience when Paulo talked about “making banking joyful for both customers and employee.

The person said in clear and loud sound “Oh my!” following by a big and surprised laugh. Usually this the reaction when people talk about the benefits of agile mind set in big and traditional industries.My wife worked for a bank for many years and believe me! She and her ex-colleagues were not living a joyful moment there.

Paul did an amazing job in walking us through DBS’s journey and the main transformation points that drove DBS culture to a wining bank among competition that were comprised by a set of practices from lean, agile, design thinking, innovation, big data and motivated people looking for change.  He make a joke about the meaning of DBS: Damn Bloody Slow but it turned out to be leading the market in Singapore’s area.

  1. Eliminate the waste: a lean approach to understand your cost per transactions or a simple metric that can help you identify waste in your day-to-day activities.
  2. Design from Customer Back: understand your client’s journey. Get close to their routine and get to know them and make all efforts to design your organization to serve and add value to them. The client is your boss not your manager, process and super fancy group of buzz words.
  3. Be data driven: when you are able to combine and match data (structured and unstructured data) with client’s information the magic happens. Decisions can be more effective and the impact in terms of value that client perceives is huge.
  4. Create a culture of innovation: Allow people to experiment and try new ideas then let them fail and learn from the experience. I bring this sentence with me every time I am struggling on how to implement something:  Start small and grow fast!
  5. Codify the culture: make sure everyone is talking and walking the speech. Lean practices to eliminate the waste, design thinking, data and innovation culture. These are the pillars that might lead your organization and clients to a new level of joyfulness

Continue reading “Business Agility 2017 in New York – Day 2 Review”

Agile, Business Agility

Business Agility Conference 2017

bac-2017-logo Hello Everyone! I was counting the days for this conference on business agility! This is the first conference of its kind. There are many cool topics, great people as speakers, thought leaders and deep dive sessions  that will blow your mind with new ideas. The topics will be presented on a TED format and will cover the following:

  • Introducing Business Agility
  • Governance & Strategy
  • Leadership & Empowerment
  • Leading the Transformation
  • People & Engagement
  • Fearless Change

I will contribute as a facilitator in the deep dive sessions and I will be sharing new ideas and thoughts along the week. For more information, please click on the logo above. See you all there!