Wednesday, 7 September 2011

Agile Practitioner IL - 3rd Meeting

Sunday evening we met for the 3rd time. This time Roy Osherove discussed 10 mistakes team leaders make an updated version of the slides can also be found here.
During the talk Roy mentioned several books, out of those I really recommend Johanna Rothman & Eshter Derby, Behind Closed Doors: Secrets of Great Management. For me that book was a career changer. I recall reading it as a team leader and for the first time I felt someone actually wrote a book that explained to me what a team leader job is all about. Also the book is filled with practical techniques that can be applied as is. from planning to conducting one on ones. Just the sort of advice I needed at that time.

Scrum Master vs. Team Leader

Towards the end of the session a discussion rose regarding the place of the scrum master and about the amount of authority he as over the team.
On one hand we all know that a scrum master is not the team leader. and it is considered a bad practice to make the team leader into one. However, it is also clear that the Scrum Master as defined by his roles and responsibilities, should lead the team helping them to become better at what they do. and in fact in most cases the natural candidates for becoming the scrum masters are the team leaders.
So where does the line from leader to manager is drawn?
Actually I don’t have a good answer for that. My gut feeling tells me that a “good” team leader, will fit the role of a scrum master very easily. Yes there are some traps and pitfalls that he should avoid, but if he is “good” that should not be a problem. However, many team leaders are not “good” and there is a real danger making them scrum masters. While as a team leaders they might manage to still function, as scrum masters they are not equipped to handle an agile transition which by itself is hard enough. In most cases they just ruin any attempt at any kind of an agile process. In my eyes the job of a scrum master is so much harder and it take a more experienced person with the “right” state of mind to do a good job. Leading a team is much harder then managing it.

The “Good” team leader

the million dollar question is of course how to sort the “good” team leaders from the rest?
  • Are they the team leaders which demonstrate the best productivity in their teams?
  • Are the the one most liked by their teams?
  • are they the ones most appreciated by their managers?
  • or is it something completely different?
don’t really know.
The only thing I did found along the way, is that there is a strong correlation between team leaders exert minimal authority over the team to those who becomes great scrum masters. So when I see a team leader which doesn’t “tell” his team what to do, and instead asked them many questions I know that there is a good candidate for becoming a Scrum Master.

Tuesday, 6 September 2011

Making your team manage their own work

I really think that team leader should stop being the ones which split the work into tasks and decide who does what.

I’ve written more about this subject and it was published here at the 5whys blog. (which is an excellent reading materials for team leaders)

Monday, 5 September 2011

Bug: $10, Future Bug: $200, Angry clients: $5,000, One TDD course: Priceless

When you write code for a living, mistakes can be expensive. They can create bugs that will crop up in the next version or the version after that, they can cause problems down the line for the end user who can't use the software and worst of all, they can create bugs that you spend longs days (and nights) working to find before the release.

One way of avoiding these mistakes is Test Driven Design - write the test before the code and the bug (if any) is easy to find. And a course in Test Driven Design is not that expensive - and even less so today :)

Thursday, 1 September 2011

Introduction To TDD – Early Bird

Just wanted to remind that you can still get the early bird pricing for my upcoming training on September the 18th. People who will register by Tuesday the 6/9 will get a 50% discount for the course (making the cost only 600NIS per person).
Details about the course can be found here,
Registration details can be found HERE
If you have any other question feel free to contact me

Design by Free WordPress Themes | Bloggerized by Lasantha - Premium Blogger Themes | Walgreens Printable Coupons