XP Days Benelux 2010

XP Days Benelux 2010 will be held in Kapellerput, Heeze (near Eindhoven), The Netherlands on 25-26 November

The program for XP Days Benelux has been published. This year we have more sessions than ever before: 41 sessions over 2 days. As always, it’s going to be hard to select only one session from the five parallel tracks.

I’ll be presenting “Agreeing on Business Value with Systems Thinking” with Portia Tung. I’ll be doing a tryout of this presentation, which has been updated after presenting it at Agile 2010. Come to the Agile/XP Belgium user group meeting on Tuesday 26th of October.

If you want to see a tryout of the “Database Change Management” session, join us in the Agile/XP Belgium user group meeting on Tuesday 5th of October.


Lean Product Development at Lean & Kanban Belgium 2010

Parallel evolution

Last Thursday and Friday I participated in the Lean and Kanban Belgium 2010 conference. I was scheduled to present a session on Friday morning, so I could go to many sessions on Thursday.

Every session that I attended on Thursday said many things I wanted to say:

  • Sandrine Olivencia talked about challenging the team for continuous improvement
  • Dave Nicolette talked about the dysfunctions around budgeting and the need for IT to integrate, not align, with the value stream
  • Anthony Marcano and Andy Palmer explained how analysis can be implemented as a pull system
  • Ryan Shriver essentially said all I wanted to say about finding the real goals of our users and quantifying their needs
  • John Seddon told tales about really understanding value demand and taking a systems thinking approach to the design of work in his usual, inimitable style

What was left to say? At the end of the day I could scrap about 3/4 of my talk. The good news is that many people are independently reporting that these techniques and approaches work. And they can show results.

In the end, there was more than enough to fill an hour. After the presentation several people asked questions and discussed what I presented.

p.s. I followed Dave Nicolette‘s advice to grow a profitable consultancy: coin a new acronym. I give you “IDD”. You’ll have to watch the presentation to know what it means. And you’ll have to pay me big bucks to come implement it in your organisation 🙂


Lean & Kanban Europe 2010

I’ll present “Lean out your product backlog with lean product development and business analysis techniques” at the Lean & Kanban Europe 2010 conference.

The session will show how using business analysis and kanban techniques we can create a flow from business goals to implementable user stories with acceptance test, focus on value-delivering capabilities and involve the whole team in product development.

Lean & Kanban 2010 Europe Speaker


Université du SI 2010

I’ll co-present a session with Christophe Thibaut about the “A3 process” at the Université du SI conference on July 1-2 in Paris.

The “A3 report” is a standardized report format used within Toyota and other companies to make proposals and report. The standardized and constrained format helps the writer and readers to come to the point quickly, concentrate on the essentials and get the important information without wasting time.

However, when applying this technique we often only implement the superficial elements, the fact that the documents are limited in size and have a standardized format. Sometimes, the exact format of the Toyota reports is copied. And then we’re disappointed because this “cargo cult” application only delivers limited benefits.

In this session we’ll look at and let participants experiment with the social aspects of the A3 report:

  • How we define the standardized format to support our goals
  • How leaders and managers use A3 report writing by their team members are structured one-to-one coaching
  • How to build in iteration and feedback from peers to improve the proposals
  • How to use the review process as a consensus building tool
  • How to present reports in such a way that they’re heard, understood and accepted

Come and play with us if you want to learn more about this powerful continuous improvement and learning tool.

If you want to know more…


Agile 2010

I’ll co-present three sessions at this year’s Agile 2010 conference on August 9-13 in Orlando, Florida:

  • In “Pinocchio, On Becoming a Lean Leader” (Tuesday August 10, 13:30-15:00) Portia Tung and I help participants along the dangerous journey from toy boy to real boy. You’ll meet all your favourite characters from this Agile Fairytale and come away with some concrete actions to become a better leader.
  • Agreeing on Business Value using Systems Thinking” (Wednesday August 11, 09:00-10:30) is a workshop where Portia Tung and I help participants come up with a “Business Value Model” for their current project. You’ll be able to use the Business Value Model to identify the high value solutions that satisfy your customers. The number of places for this workshop will be strictly limited to 20.
  • Estimation Games” (Thursday August 12, 13:30-15:00) gives participants some rules of thumb to create reliable estimates with little effort. During the session we’ll play some small estimation games to put the lessons into practice. You need never be afraid again of estimating.

If you want to know more…