Why do retreats work? And.. how do you do retreats in these confinement times??

These are challenging times, but they also present opportunities to revisit our practices and rediscover the values and principles behind them. Indeed, doing so makes it pretty clear that they are heuristics- practices that have worked for us many times in several different contexts. In this sense, they have been faithful friends in our agile journeys. But they have started breaking and failing us in these highly disturbing times.

Retreats work because they force us to take a fresh perspective on our challenges. They get us out of our comfort zones and enable us to look at our blind spots. From this new viewpoint we are able to find creative solutions to recurring issues and get us unstuck.

A “SL!K” workshop (“is there a Snow Leopard !n your Kitchen”) achieves the same outcomes using metaphors for agility. My personal experience and thorough research in agile and lean principles and applications has allowed me to identify two particularly simple yet extremely rich metaphors. The workshop invites participants to identify common characteristics of agility through them, then invites them to bring these newly rediscovered principles and apply them to their context.

Such a workshop works because it brings participants to another location, a safe place, where they explore and test ideas with strangers or colleagues outside the context of their workplaces. Creativity emerges and so do new ideas for agile practices. Finally, it works, because they can leave rigid frameworks and copy-paste agility behind, and create practices that they will be motivated to try, and empowered to adapt.

This talk summarizes a journey over decades of mental exploration and research, trial and errors, through the complex intertwined mazes of large organizations and agile training, certifications and coaching industries.

 
 

Outline/Structure of the Talk

[9 mn] impromptu networking

[13 mn] talk with slides: 1. characteristics of agility. 2. Navigating the Cynefin framework 3. Using Training from the Back of Room to teach agility 4. Agile practices vs emergence 5. Implications for leaders 6. the SL!K workshop psychological underpinnings

[8 mn] participants break into small groups and discuss, identify questions to ask in the whole group

[8 mn] Q&A with the whole group

Learning Outcome

  • the importance of emergence in complex systems and agility
  • the importance of psychological safety, growth mindset & intrinsic motivation
  • introduction to a simple metamodel for agility
  • why and how a SL!K workshop works, when to use it
  • conditions for the workshop success (leadership, environment)

Target Audience

executives, managers and coaches

Prerequisites for Attendees

  • Good understanding of Agile and/or Lean framework principles
  • Experience going through at least one Agile transformation
  • A critical mind and
  • An open mind!
schedule Submitted 10 months ago

  • Mike Bowler
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    Mike Bowler - Retrospective Magic: Tips from neuroscience and psychology to improve your retros.

    60 Mins
    Talk
    Intermediate

    Are your retros running a bit flat? Need something to spice them up and make them more effective and also more interesting for your team? Join us as we walk through a collection of techniques from psychology and applied neuroscience to give your retros that edge you need. 

    You’ll walk away from this session with immediately applicable techniques that you can use right away.

  • Olivier Gourment
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    Olivier Gourment - Is there a Snow Leopard !n your Kitchen? The SL!K workshop to reboot agility in any team!

    Olivier Gourment
    Olivier Gourment
    Agile Coach
    Agile-U inc.
    schedule 10 months ago
    Sold Out!
    60 Mins
    Workshop
    Intermediate

    Too many agile teams get stuck in their journey or even revert back to pre-agile ways of working. This has become even worse with covid, as old habits of requesting detailed plans and requirement documents have filled the sudden physical and emotional voids.

    Could these new times create an opportunity to not only stop but reverse the trend back to waterfall and handoffs? You might just need to find the right workshop!

    The innovative "Is there a Snow Leopard !n your Kitchen" (SL!K) workshop leverages powerful metaphors and invite participants to combine them to make them see their way of working with a brand new perspective and immediately come up with new agile practices to try.

    While this workshop appears almost silly, it is grounded in sound psychology, advanced lean and agile principles, and years of experience coaching struggling teams and helping them find their agile breakthrough.

    Come with your peers and re-ignite agility for your team or organisation!

  • Fernando Cuenca
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    Fernando Cuenca - Upstream Kanban: Modelling Discovery and Innovation in the "Fuzzy Front-End"

    Fernando Cuenca
    Fernando Cuenca
    Principal Consultant
    SquirrelNorth
    schedule 10 months ago
    Sold Out!
    60 Mins
    Talk
    Intermediate

    How do your features land in the Product Backlog? Perhaps your team uses "design sprints", "design thinking" workshops, a "UX research" phase, ongoing "grooming" sessions., or a combination of all that. When all that is happening, how do you narrow down your options to select the best ideas amongst all the good ones that come out of brainstorming sessions? Perhaps through long "prioritization" sessions, where it's difficult to come up with an objective criteria. And then, how does commitment and scheduling happen? How is it decided that an idea will be worked on now, later or perhaps never? 

    All teams have processes in place to do all these things, but most have trouble describing how it actually happens, and therefore reasoning about its effectiveness and ways to improve it to remove any frustration that they may be causing. Upstream Kanban is an answer to these challenges.

    This talk will explore the use of Upstream Kanban to visualize, model, and manage the "fuzzy front-end" activities that are often used to drive discovery and innovation. We will describe what to look for in a "healthy" upstream workflow, the role of experimentation, and the use of "custom risk assessment frameworks" to drive selection and commitment.

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