Dual Track Agile - Balancing Continuous Discovery and Delivery

In most organizations practicing Agile, all the focus is on building more stuff faster - velocity and predictability. And yet, we all know that delivering more stuff faster on time doesn’t guarantee product or organization success. Does this mean Agile doesn’t work? No, I don’t think so. But, I believe we are missing an important piece of this puzzle. It starts with recognizing there are at least two types of work in software development. There’s no way around it.

Enter Dual Track Agile - a method for balancing these different work types. Most of us are familiar with the first type of work: Development. This is what most Agile practices are optimized for. Development tends to focus on predictability and quality. The second type of work, Discovery, focuses on fast learning and validation. The inconvenient truth is that these different types of work require us to work in different types of ways.

In this talk, Chris will define the Dual Track method. He will explain the basic mechanics of dual track and how to get started. Chris will also cover the most common implementation questions:

  • Who is responsible for the types of work?
  • How should we organize our teams?
  • How does it change common Scrum ceremonies?
  • How do you plan?

…and more.

You’ll leave the talk with a new method for Agile product development and a plan for introducing it to your teams. Chris has seen this method work across many different companies and domains. Stop fighting your organization's velocity focus and give them a better way of working.


Outline/Structure of the Talk

  • What’s the problem with how Agile teams work today
    • Focus too much on velocity, predictability, quality
    • Ignore whether what we shipped delivered the benefit we hoped
    • Failing to manage risk
  • What is dual track
    • Define discovery
    • Define development
    • Discovery and development are in separate tracks because they’re separate types of work
  • What are the basic mechanics that make dual track work
  • Common Dual Track implementation questions:
    • Is the discovery team different than the development team?
      • Two tracks, not two teams
    • Does everything move from discovery to development?
    • After something moves to development, is discovery work done?
    • Does discovery work come before Agile development?
    • How does Dual Track change our Scrum ceremonies?
      • How do you visualize discovery and development?
      • How do you plan discovery and development cycles?

Learning Outcome

Participants will learn:

  • the difference between the two types of work in Agile development (discovery and development)
  • how to plan and manage these types of work
  • how to change current agile ceremonies to accommodate these different types of work
  • how to organize and structure teams for success

Target Audience

Product Managers, Product Owners, Scrum Masters, UX Leads, Engineering Leads, delivery team participants

Prerequisites for Attendees


schedule Submitted 1 year ago