Tag Archives: framework

The Toyota flow system

The Toyota Flow System (TFS, developed by Nigel Thurlow, Professor John Turner, and Brian Rivera, 2019can be described as a system of patterns, practices and techniques to enable organizations and institutions to achieve desired outcomes in a complex world. This model uses the popular representation of a house, from the Toyota Production System model (TPS), to outline an evidence-based approach to achieving business transformation.

The TFS is a system of understanding, and not a one-size-fits-all framework. The TFS model aims to sustain the flow of value to the customer, who is the center of the TFS universe.

As we dig deeper into the helixes, we find the philosophies, tools and knowledge (practice and theory) behind each component.  For Distributed Leadership, leadership is viewed as being bottom-up, top-down, as well as horizontal. Complexity Thinking involves identifying the level of complexity that is present in a problem or environment and calls for viewing systems as open and complex adaptive systems (CAS). Finally, Team Science utilizes empirical research to incorporate teamwork into current practices rather than operating as command-and-control groups with no teamwork present.

Toyota-Flow-System

For more information have a look at: Introducing the Toyota flow system 

In my Bird’s eye view on the agile forest, I positioned this approach in the block business as usual / indefinite. For more information on this picture see: A bird’s eye view on the agile forest 

Grasp session (Scaling Agile, 190702) v1.1

Bimodal Portfolio Management

Introduction

1*ORjFcvHHbyWBTA1WIijXYwAt the moment, many organizations are in the middle, or on the brink of, a radical change to more business agility. I receive quite often the question how to cope with both an agile portfolio as well as a more traditional portfolio with temporary projects and programs. Existing frameworks supports either an agile IT portfolio or a more traditional portfolio, but I haven’t seen frameworks which supports both.

If I look at existing traditional and agile IT portfolio management frameworks, I asked myself if combining these frameworks can bring an answer for those organizations who need to manage an agile as well as a more traditional portfolio?

In this article I will start with a brief explanation of the existing portfolio management frameworks by explaining the principles and the process (Management of Portfolios, Standard for Portfolio Management, Disciplined Agile Portfolio Management, Agile Portfolio Management, Evidence-Based Portfolio Management, and SAFe Lean Portfolio Management).

MoP P3O SAFe Hybrid (190621) v0.1In the second part of this article I focus on Bimodal Portfolio Management where I combine the best of these worlds and offer a solution for both worlds in the form of a Bimodal Portfolio Kanban (see figure), Bimodal Portfolio Management Principles and Bimodal Portfolio Roadmaps.

To download the article: Bimodal Portfolio Management (article, 190626) v1.0

 

The Agile Fluency model

The Agile Fluency model, developed by Diana Larsen and James Shore in 2012 and substantially updated in 2018, is a framework to help teams understand their current position and to help them develop an individual road map. Agile teams pass through four distinct zones of fluency as they learn (fluency evolves). Diana Larsen defines fluency as things that you do automatically without thinking. Each zone brings specific benefits:

  1. Focusing teams produce business value (agile fundamentals). The team thinks and plans in terms of the benefits their sponsors, customers, and users will see from their software.
  2. Delivering teams deliver on the market cadence (agile sustainability). The team can release their latest work, at minimal risk and cost, whenever the business desires.
  3. Optimizing teams lead their market (innovative business agility, agile’s promise). The team understands what their market wants, what your business needs, and how to meet those needs.
  4. Strengthening teams make their organizations stronger (possible future of agile). The team understands its role in the larger organizational system and actively works to make that system more successful.

Schermafdruk 2019-05-30 15.52.02A team’s fluency comes from the ability of team members to self-organize so that individual skills are applied to the right problems at the right times. A team is fluent in a zone when it’s fluent in all of the zone’s proficiencies, including predecessor zones.

The appropriate zone for your teams depends on your organization and can be different from team to team. It is not a ranking system, but is about understanding and working towards the appropriate level of fluency for your needs at a particular point in time. Delivering or Optimizing are often the best targets, but Focusing and Strengthening can also be good choices. Fluency is more a matter of habits than skills.

Video: The Agile Fluency Model Explained: A Brief Guide to Success with Agile

The Agile Fluency Model whitepaper

Agile Fluency Simulation — an educational, exciting board game

This model definitely fits into the culture-targeted block of my bird’s eye view on the agile frameworks forest (see also the complete article):Grasp session (Scaling Agile, 190506) v1.1

 

Review: An executive’s guide to disciplined agile

DAThe book An executive’s guide to disciplined agile – Winning the race to business agility written by Scott W. Ambler and Mark Lines give a good overview of Disciplined Agile.

Disciplined Agile (DA) provides light-weight guidance to help organizations streamline their Information Technology (IT) and business processes in a context-sensitive manner. DA provides the process foundation for business agility.

There are seven principles to highlight the discipled agile mindset: delight customers, be awesome, pragmatism, context counts, choice is good, optimize flow and enterprise awareness. To stress the ability of being disciplined there are additional principles: master your craft, technical excellence, collaborate, measure wisely, transparency, lean continuously, purposeful experiments, deliver continuously, visualize workflow, whole team, stable team and trust and respect.

DA (QRC, 190407) v1.0DA consists of four parts (and are covered in chapters 3-6, the main part of the book):

  • Disciplined Agile Delivery (DAD). DAD addresses all aspects of solution delivery
  • Disciplined DevOps. This is the streamlining of IT solution development and IT operations
  • Disciplined Agile IT (DAIT). DAIT addresses how to apply agile and lean strategies to all aspects of IT
  • Disciplined Agile Enterprise (DAE). DAE is able to anticipate and respond swiftly to changes in the marketplace.

Within DAD we see the following roles:

  • Primary roles: Stakeholder and Team roles (Team lead, Product Owner, Team Member and Architecture Owner)
  • Secondary roles: Specialist, Independent Tester, Domain Expert, Technical Expert and Integrator.

The non-prescriptive DAD lifecycle consists of three phases inception, construction and transition. There are several versions of this lifecycle:

  • Agile/Basis lifecycle based on scrum. This lifecycle starts with the inception phase where modelling, planning and organization takes place and the initial backlog and release plan will be created. The other phases are similar with the Agile continuous delivery lifecycle (see below)
  • Lean/advanced lifecycle based on Kanban. This lifecycle starts with the inception phase where modelling, planning and organization takes place and the initial backlog will be created. The other phases are similar with the Lean continuous delivery lifecycle (see below)
  • Agile continuous delivery lifecycle: a single permanent agile team using Scrum giving a continuous stream of development (construction phase), released at the end of each iteration (short transition phase) and no need for an inception phase
  • Lean continuous delivery lifecycle: a single permanent agile team using Kanban giving a continuous stream of development (construction phase), and short transition phases and no need for an inception phase
  • Exploratory lifecycle based on Lean Start-up. This lifecycle starts with Envision, followed by Build a little, Deploy, Observe and Measure and Cancel or Productize the idea. I would say this is not a complete delivery lifecycle. To productize you have to use one of the other lifecycles
  • When you need more teams to build the service or product you need to coordinate the effort of the different teams to ensure they work together effectively towards the common goal. This is called in DA program management for large agile teams with the corresponding leadership team roles like a Program Manager/Coordinator, Product Delivery, Product Ownership and Architecture Ownership. The book doesn’t describe that much but, on the website, you can find much more information about program management.

The non-prescriptive set-up is emphasised by goal diagrams. Mindmaps to summarize the goals of a specific activity, e.g. addressing changing stakeholder needs, explore the initial scope or continuous improvement to mention a few.

Real life examples are missing in this book but can be found in their book Introduction to disciplined agile delivery

Disciplined DevOps explains what it means to bridge the gap between the agile teams and IT operations. In the book the workflow between Solution Delivery and IT Operations and other departments like Business Operations (BizDevOps), Security (DevSecOps), Data Management (DevDataOps) and Release Management and IT Support are explained. Reasons to adopt a Disciplined DevOps approach are faster time to market, improved market competitiveness, improved customer service, increased dependability, increased staff retention, improved governance and lower cost.

Disciplined Agile IT addresses how to apply agile and lean strategies to all aspects of IT. The workflow of Disciplined Agile IT is explained with a focus Disciplined DevOps, IT Operations, Release Management, Support, Security, Data Management and IT Governance, Reuse Engineering, Enterprise Architecture, People Management, Product Management, Continuous Improvement and Portfolio Management. On several place you get goal diagrams.

Portfolio Management addresses the following issues: spend IT investment wisely, balance exploring new business with exploiting existing value streams, monitor and guide ongoing activities, rolling-wave budgeting and planning, prefer small initiatives over large initiatives, cull “failures” quickly, invest in quality and enable team effectiveness.

To become a Disciplined Agile Enterprise, you have to embrace the following fundamental ideas:

  • Your organization and your people must be agile
  • It’s all about value streams
  • There is no one right answer
  • You need to sense and respond
  • You must be a learning organization
  • Self-organizing teams need fast access to resources.

In the workflow for Disciplined Agile Enterprise we see besides the ones mentioned in the Disciplined Agile IT workflow, Marketing, Sales, Control, Finance, Procurement and Legal. The authors explain the Disciplined Agile approaches in the different functions.

Next the authors give some insights what it means if you want to transform your organisation from a traditional structure and culture to one exhibiting true business agility. This will be very hard and will take a long time. Focus will vary over time in the following areas: executive education, executive coaching, middle-management coaching, agile training, agile/lean pilot teams, delivery team coaching, IT coaching, business coaching, skils training, agile centre of excellence, communication, experiments and communities of practice. The chapter ends with an example of a transformation and adoption roadmap anf how to measure your way to success. A separate chapter focusses on the final step in the transition, your organization has to become a learning organization (continuous improvement) and this will never end.

Conclusion: If you are not familiar with disciplined Agile and you want to get a clear overview of this framework, this book is a very good start. Looking at the different delivery cycles, there must be ones that have the right fit for your projects. If you want to implement disciplined Agile you probable need more information (as explained in the book too), and training and coaching too.

To order: An executive’s guide to disciplined agile – Winning the race to business agility

Positionering of Disciplined Agile in my birds eye view on the agile frameworks forest:Agile (50 shades of gray NTTP, 190415) v0.1

 

 

 

Review: Introduction to Disciplined Agile Delivery

9200000046318020Scott W. ambler and Mark Lines are the creators of the Disciplined Agile Delivery framework and the authors of the book Introduction to Disciplined Agile Delivery – a small Agile Team’s journey from Scrum to Disciplined DevOps (2ndedition).

Disciplined Agile Delivery (DAD) is one of the four elements of Disciplined Agile (DA). The other parts are Disciplined DevOps, Disciplined Agile IT (DAIT) and Disciplined Agile Enterprise (DAE).

DAD is characterized by the following aspects:

  • Hybrid: combines Scrum, Agile Modelling, XP, Unified Process, Kanban, Lean, Outside-In Development (OID) and other methods
  • Full delivery cycle. Scrum offers only a development cycle. DAD starts from team initiation all the way to delivering the solution to its end users
  • Supports multiple lifecycles based on inception, construction and transition: an agile/basic version that extends the Scrum construction lifecycle with proven ideas form Unified Process to support early mitigation of risk and lightweight governance; an advanced/lean lifecycle based on Kanban; an agile continuous delivery lifecycle; a lean continuous lifecycle; and an exploratory lifecycle based upon a Lean Start-up approach
  • Complete: DAD includes advice how development, modeling, documentation, and governance strategies fit together
  • Context-sensitive: instead of prescriptive frameworks like Scrum, DAD promotes a goal- or object-driven approach.

The core of the book is a case study. We follow a team on their journey to use DAD and more specific the Scrum-based agile/basic lifecycle. It starts, after the introduction of the team and other stakeholders, with the Inception phase. The goals of the Inception phase are: form initial team, develop common vision, align with enterprise direction, explore initial scope, identify initial technical strategy, develop initial release plan, secure funding, form work environment, identify risks and develop initial test strategy.

In the construction phase the team uses, as described in the release plan, ten construction iterations to produce a potentially shippable solution. Every iteration starts with an iteration planning cycle. Every day there will be a coordination meeting and the iteration ends with the iteration review/demo and the retrospective. Additional to scrum, DAD will have a proven architecture and the sufficient functionality milestone reviews too and you have to pass both successfully before you can go into the Transition phase.

The focus of the Transition phase is for a team to release/deploy their consumable solution into production successfully. To ensure that the solution is ready to deploy the team focusses on the final testing and fixing, the support training of the helpdesk staff, the finalization of the deliverable documentation, the support of the development of end-user training (videos), and the validation of the deployment scripts.

As a next step we follow the team on their road to Disciplined DevOps. In this case the team decided to have seven 2-week iterations. Some highlights of the iterations are the adoption of Test Driven Development (TDD), working from home, improvement tracking, the evolvement of the team, the usage of parallel independent testing, how to cope with vacations and the sharing of their learnings, ATDD or BDD training and adoption, requirements envisioning, quality and continuous integration and deployment. At a certain moment, after several releases, the release cadence was tightened, and their lifecycle evolved towards the lean lifecycle and the team stopped with sizing their work.

Conclusion: if you are looking for a comprehensive overview of DAD this is the book to read. The case gives a good overview of the Scrum-based agile/basic lifecycle and may help you to take the first steps to implement DAD.

More information can be found on disciplinedagileconsortium.org

To order: Introduction to Disciplined Agile Delivery

Disciplined Agile and Disciplined Agile Delivery positioned in my birds eye view on the agile forest

Grasp session (Scaling Agile T-Mobile, 2019 Q1) v0.1

 

AgileSHIFT an overarching agile framework

AgileSHIFTcoverMany organizations are struggling to implement agile delivery frameworks to increase their level of agility, and many organizations fail. One of the reasons is the culture clash between a traditional organization and the agile culture. Only implementing agile delivery frameworks in e.g. your IT department is not enough.

AXELOS has developed a framework (see attached Quick Reference Card/QRC AgileSHIFT) that prepares people for transformational change by creating a culture of enterprise agility. The AgileSHIFT framework helps organizations to undergo a transformational change, to adopt a ‘survive, compete and thrive’ mindset. It will help to bridge the gap between the current and the target state (the Delta in AgileSHIFT) by embracing a range of agile, structured and hybrid approaches across the organization. The existing severe split between ‘run the business’ and ‘change the business’ will vanish. Now called, in this framework, Run the Organization and Change the Organization. Everyone is a change-enabler, encouraged and empowered to make change happen.

AgileSHIFT (QRC, 181012) v1.0To download: AgileSHIFT (QRC, 181012) v1.0

The AgileSHIFT framework explains why we need enterprise agility. There is an increasing pace of change (VUCA: volatility, Uncertainty, Complexity, Ambiguity), the role of technology (from technology supported, via technology enabled towards technology centric), the delta between the current and target state of your organization and disruptive influences by enablers (as the gig economy, remote working, cloud storage and online presence), inefficient markets and black swan events.

To accommodate what we have to do the AgileSHIFT framework defines enterprise agility, principles and practices. Enterprise agility is the ability of an organization to move and adapt quickly in response to shifting customer and market needs. The five principles are: Change will happen so embrace the status quo, challenge the status quo, develop an environment where everybody adds value, focus on the co-creation of customer value and tailor your approach. The five practices are: Plan to be flexible and adaptable, engage stakeholders, build collaborative teams, focus on the co-creation of customer value and measure value.

The how (corresponds with the AgileSHIFT delivery approach) is expressed in the AgileSHIFT framework by the roles, the AgileSHIFT workflow and an iteration and by tools and techniques. There are three roles: the AgileSHIFT team, sponsor and coach. A simple iteration approach is explained but depending on the situation you have to choose the right approach. Tools and techniques include: customer stories and epics, relative estimating and story points, AgileSHIFT task list and roadmap, swarm, kanban, canvasses and agendas. For the last two there will downloads available.

To show your understanding of AgileSHIFT, foundation and practitioner certification will be possible.

In the next picture, I have positioned AgileSHIFT.Grasp session (Scaling Agile, 180526) v1.1

Jeff Sutherland launches the Scrum@Scale Guide

Schermafdruk 2018-02-19 18.55.08Jeff Sutherland has developed a concise guide that layouts the key roles and artifacts for Scrum@Scale. It’s free and available for your use.

Jeff Sutherland: “Scrum@Scale was created to efficiently coordinate this new ecosystem of teams in a way that optimizes the overall strategy of the organization. It achieves this goal through setting up a minimum viable bureaucracy

Scrum@Scale offers a scale free architecture.

Scrum@Scale is:

  • Lightweight – the minimum viable bureaucracy
  • Simple to understand – consists of only Scrum teams coordinated by Scrum of Scrums and MetaScrums
  • Difficult to master – requires implementing a new operating model.

Scrum@Scale contains two cycles: the Scrum Master Cycle (the “how”) and the Product Owner Cycle (the “what”), each touching the other at two points. Taken together, these cycles produce a powerful framework for coordinating the efforts of multiple teams along a single path. The Scrum Master Cycle contains the following modules: Team-Level Process, Continuous Improvement & Impediment Removal, Cross-Team Coordination, Deployment and Product & Release Feedback. The first and the last module are part of the Product Owner Cycle too. Besides these modules we find the following modules: Strategic Vision, Backlog Prioritization, Backlog Decomposition & Refinement, and Release Planning.

Schermafdruk 2018-02-19 19.47.47

To scale Scrum in your organization across many teams Jeff Sutherland works with high performance teams of 4-5 people as the optimal size. If you need more people working on a single product, a team of max 5 teams can be created. These teams comprise a Scrum of Scrums (SoS) with representatives from the different teams (often the Scrum Masters) to coordinate the work (the how) and they hold a Scaled Daily Scrum (SDS). The Scrum of Scrums is a Scrum team too with its own Product Owner and a Scrum of Scrums Master (SoSM, compare the RTE in SAFe). If 25 people or 5 teams is not enough to develop one product, max 5 Scrum of Scrums can work together with a Scrum of Scrum of Scrums (SoSoS) with a SoSoSM (compare the STE in SAFe) and this can continue. 5 SoSoS’s can work together and form a model with 125 teams. Depending on the size of the organization this can continue. The final Scrum of Scrums of an organization is called the Executive Action Team (EAT).

The same mechanism is applied for the Product Owners synchronization. The group of Product Owners who need to coordinate the backlog for the 5 teams is called the MetaScrum. This MetaScrum is a Scrum team too with its own Scrum Master and Chief Product Owner (CPO, compare Product Management in SAFe, or The Chief Product Owner in LeSS). In line with SoS’s that can grow into SoSoS’s the MetaScrums can grow too. For 25 teams we see a MetaScrum with a CCPO (compare Solution Management in SAFe). The final Meta Scrum of an organization is called the Executive MetaScrum (EMS).

In the guide several examples are given of organizational design with several soSoS’s and MetaScrums as well as the Executive MetaScrum and Action Team supported by separate teams focusing on Legal/Compliance, Customer Relations and People Operations (Agile HR).

Conclusion. If I look at the Scrum@Scale material available on www.scrumalliance.org there is much more detailed information available regarding the different modules within the framework but the two cycles are connected at Team Level Process and Strategic Vision (in the just published definitive guide this is now Product & Release Feedback and I would say that makes sense). There you could also find differentiation at with level the module is used (team, Department, organization). Probably an evolution of the framework and to keep it as simple as possible by only using Scrum teams and SoS/MetaScrums. The organizational mechanism to scale Scrum is added (My first reaction where have I seen this before: compare goal driven agile on my blog). If it makes sense to keep Customer Relations (is this not a PO or MetaScrum task?), legal/compliance, HR etc. out of the Scrum teams is food for discussion.

Have a look by yourself at www.scrumatscale.com were you can download the guide.