Book: Problem? What Problem?

Agile emphasizes to establish teams and give them whatever they need to do their work. This book on impediments explores how teams can effectively deal with the problems that will happen in their daily work. In agile these problems are called impediments: anything that slows down a team and needs to be dealt with. Agile teams need to be able to handle impediments. This is the first book specifically about dealing with impediments using agile thinking with problem-solving practices. In this book, I explain why dealing with impediments matters. The book also provides approaches for you to effectively handle impediments in teams and beyond the teams. I'm also sharing experience stories from my practice. I based this book on my experience as a developer, tester, team leader, project manager, quality manager, process manager, consultant, coach, trainer, and adviser in Agile, Lean, Quality, and Continuous Improvement. This book dives into problem solving and impediments, viewing them from different perspectives and provides ideas, suggestions, practices, and experiences that will help you to become more effective in dealing with impediments. This book is for agile teams, Scrum masters, tech leads, agile coaches, consultants, developers and testers, project managers, line managers, and CxOs; basically, anyone who is looking for an effective way to handle impediments or support people in doing that. With plenty of ideas, suggestions, examples, and practical cases on impediments, this book will help you to become more effective in dealing with impediments.

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Book: Create Your Successful Agile Project

You think agile techniques might be for you, but your projects and organization are unique. An "out-of-the-box" agile approach won't work. Instead, unite agile and lean principles for your project. See how to design a custom approach, reap the benefits of collaboration, and deliver value. For project managers who want to use agile techniques, managers who want to start, and technical leaders who want to know more and succeed, this book is your first step toward agile project success. You've tried to use an off-the-shelf approach to agile techniques, and it's not working. Instead of a standard method or framework, work from agile and lean principles to design your own agile approach in a way that works for you. Build collaborative, cross-functional teams. See how small batch sizes and frequent delivery create an environment of trust and transparency between the team, management, and customers. Learn about the interpersonal skills that help agile teams work together so well. In addition to seeing work and knowing what "done" means, you'll see examples of many possible team-based measurements. Look at tools you can use for status reporting, and how to use those measurements to help your managers understand what agile techniques buy them. Recognize the traps that prevent agile principles from working in too many organizations, and what to do about those traps. Use agile techniques for workgroups, and see what managers can do to create and nurture an agile culture. You might be surprised at how few meetings and rituals you need to still work in an agile way. Johanna's signature frankness and humor will get you on the right track to design your agile project to succeed. What You Need:No technical expertise or experience needed, just a desire to know more about how you might use agile in your project.

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Book: Testing Business Ideas

A practical guide to effective business model testing 7 out of 10 new products fail to deliver on expectations. Testing Business Ideas aims to reverse that statistic. In the tradition of Alex Osterwalder’s global bestseller Business Model Generation, this practical guide contains a library of hands-on techniques for rapidly testing new business ideas. Testing Business Ideas explains how systematically testing business ideas dramatically reduces the risk and increases the likelihood of success for any new venture or business project. It builds on the internationally popular Business Model Canvas and Value Proposition Canvas by integrating Assumptions Mapping and other powerful lean startup-style experiments. Testing Business Ideas uses an engaging 4-color format to: Increase the success of any venture and decrease the risk of wasting time, money, and resources on bad ideas Close the knowledge gap between strategy and experimentation/validation Identify and test your key business assumptions with the Business Model Canvas and Value Proposition Canvas A definitive field guide to business model testing, this book features practical tips for making major decisions that are not based on intuition and guesses. Testing Business Ideas shows leaders how to encourage an experimentation mindset within their organization and make experimentation a continuous, repeatable process.

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Book: Impact

Change is inevitable, whether it represents progress is up to us. Astute leaders know that upskilling, culture change, and mindset are critical ingredients for successful digital change – but do not know how to change those quickly enough to keep up with pace of technological change. That is because our 20th century change models are not up to the challenge of 21st century digital transformation and the future of work – and that explains McKinsey’s finding that only 25% of digital transformations succeed. In Impact, globally recognized culture change expert, Paul Gibbons gives leaders 21st century change tools and models that are based on up-to-the-minute research in behavioral sciences, complexity theory, agile methods, information science, and more. Gibbons shows leaders that “the more technologically-enabled workplaces become (AI and robotics), paradoxically, the more important the “human” becomes – community, purpose, connection, empathy, relationships, and trust.” He continues, “… central to the whole picture of changing how we change, of humanizing business, and of upskilling workforces, is leadership. In a world where advancing human capability is critical, leaders need to lead learning.” Then, using that idea of leader as learner, Gibbons illustrates and how learning can happen faster and more efficiently through understanding the latest research and making appropriate use of 21st century learning technology. Impact is about leading change, and about those “upgrades” to the human side of organizations, leading, learning, communicating, changing, collaborating, deciding, and engaging. As computers do more of our thinking for us, taking over many of our cognitive tasks, our “competitive advantage” is in the social domain. Crudely, we can outsource some of our thinking, but not much of our collaboration. The upside is liberation from cognitive drudgery; the challenge is to raise our game and to become better at what makes us distinctively human – the social, the collaborative, the creative, the visionary. Leaders will learn through case studies from leading business (such as Google and Microsoft) and insights from the latest “human sciences” which will show them that – “shared purpose is more important than traditional incentives; empathy, trust, and psychological safety beat old school methods of behavior change; behavioral science sometimes produces major results through small tweaks to the environment; constant engagement works better than town halls, workshops, and focus groups; and technology-enabled dialog with stakeholders works better than surveys do." Gibbons, author of the change bestseller The Science of Organizational Change, illustrates the inauthenticity of using analog methods to drive digital change and the irony of using 20th-century change management practices with millennial workforces. Then Impact walks through the most hallowed change models, points out their flaws, and suggests updates, based upon principles such as: human-centered, technology-enabled, systemic, creative, scalable, and a based on a holistic understanding of what inspires today’s generation of workers. The author brings a fresh, challenging voice, that of philosopher, scientist, and economist, to the world of change, strategy, and leadership. In 2017, he was voted top twenty in the world in culture change and nominated for the UK’s prestigious FRSA – Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts. His popular podcast Think Bigger Think Better was voted a top twenty philosophy podcast (out of thousands globally.) He has been a business school professor, entrepreneur, CEO, consultant, an investment banker and has degrees in neuroscience, philosophy, and psychology. He is Brexit refugee living in Colorado with his two sons and an international mindsports competitor.

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Book: Thinking Remote

A book for managers leading remote teams and for employees who want to make a difference. As more companies adopt remote, flexible or office optional practices, managers and team leaders realise that the transition to a new way of working involves more than making sure that everyone has the right equipment to be able to work from home. It requires a change in mindset and approach. In this collection of articles gathered together from the Virtual not Distant blog, Pilar Orti and Maya Middlemiss reflect on this transition from a change-management perspective, drawn from their experience of working with leaders of distributed teams. Each article has been selected to cover one area of remote leadership practice and is followed by a set of leadership reflections to help you identify your next steps. Considering challenges from wellbeing to technology to communication, this series of articles will empower leaders at all levels to improve their personal practice and their team's performance. "At thirteen chapters and 100ish pages, you could conceivably finish this book in a couple of hours. I wouldn’t recommend doing so–if read right, this book works almost as a personal coach." Teresa Douglas, co-author of Secrets of the Remote Workforce.

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Book: The Technology Takers

Users of twenty-first century, digital-era technologies are "technology takers," accepting of and adjusting to whatever the market offers them. Similar to small firms that lack the market power to set prices and are economic "price takers," managers today are increasingly unable to customize the digital-era technologies their organizations use. Technology takers have little influence over the capabilities of the technologies they adopt; they cannot expect to improve on or customize for themselves the features of Facebook, Google, the iPhone, the blockchain, cloud-based enterprise resource planning systems, or other game-changing and often disintermediating technologies. The inability to modify available information technologies is a shock to leaders and managers alike. Cloud-based technologies arrive with set processes developed by others, and users must learn new ways of working each time the technologies themselves evolve. But refusing to adopt and adapt to digital-era technologies is, increasingly, not an option. Change in the digital era is constant and behavior-transforming. Managers must respond to these changes, or they will get left behind by those who do. The constancy of change also means that organizations have to do more than launch typical, one-off change management or transformation projects to succeed. To adopt efficiently and adapt effectively to behavior-changing technologies, astute leaders should employ change leadership techniques as a strategy for the digital era. This book offers technology takers a playbook to manage change, create value, and exploit the digital era's strategic opportunities. The book draws on research and recent case studies to explain what it means to be a technology taker. Organizations and their managers are offered change leadership plays, which emphasize the iterative nature of change management in the digital era. The book also describes how technology taking can create value through data stream analytics and be used strategically to respond proactively to the challenges of the digital era.

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Book: Clean Agile

Nearly twenty years after the Agile Manifesto was first presented, the legendary Robert C. Martin (“Uncle Bob”) reintroduces Agile values and principles for a new generation–programmers and nonprogrammers alike. Martin, author of Clean Code and other highly influential software development guides, was there at Agile’s founding. Now, in Clean Agile: Back to Basics, he strips away misunderstandings and distractions that over the years have made it harder to use Agile than was originally intended. Martin describes what Agile is in no uncertain terms: a small discipline that helps small teams manage small projects . . . with huge implications because every big project is comprised of many small projects. Drawing on his fifty years’ experience with projects of every conceivable type, he shows how Agile can help you bring true professionalism to software development. Get back to the basics–what Agile is, was, and should always be Understand the origins, and proper practice, of SCRUM Master essential business-facing Agile practices, from small releases and acceptance tests to whole-team communication Explore Agile team members’ relationships with each other, and with their product Rediscover indispensable Agile technical practices: TDD, refactoring, simple design, and pair programming Understand the central roles values and craftsmanship play in your Agile team’s success If you want Agile’s true benefits, there are no shortcuts: You need to do Agile right. Clean Agile: Back to Basics will show you how, whether you’re a developer, tester, manager, project manager, or customer.

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Book: Mastering Professional Scrum

Mastering Professional Scrum is for anyone who wants to deliver increased value by using Scrum more effectively. Leading Scrum practitioners Stephanie Ockerman and Simon Reindl draw on years of Scrum training and coaching to help you return to first principles and apply Scrum with the professionalism required to achieve its transformative potential. The authors aim to help you focus on proven Scrum approaches for improving quality, getting and using fast feedback, and becoming more adaptable, instead of “going through the motions” and settling for only modest improvements. Whether you’re a Scrum Master, Development Team member, or Product Owner, you’ll find practical advice for facing challenges with transparency and courage, overcoming a wide array of common challenges, and continually improving your Scrum practice. Realistically assess your current Scrum practice, and identify areas for improvement Recognize what a great Scrum Team looks like and get there Focus on “Done”–not “sort-of-Done” or “almost-Done” Measure and optimize the value delivered by every Product Increment Improve the way you plan, develop, and grow Clear away wider organizational impediments to agility and professionalism Overcome common misconceptions that stand in the way of progress

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Book: The Unicorn Project

With The Phoenix Project we learned about the Three Ways. Now with The Unicorn Project, Gene Kim introduces the Five Ideals. This highly anticipated follow-up to the bestselling title The Phoenix Project takes another look at Parts Unlimited, this time from the perspective of software development. In The Unicorn Project, we follow Maxine, a senior lead developer and architect, as she is exiled to the Phoenix Project, to the horror of her friends and colleagues, as punishment for contributing to a payroll outage. She tries to survive in what feels like a heartless and uncaring bureaucracy and to work within a system where no one can get anything done without endless committees, paperwork, and approvals. One day, she is approached by a ragtag bunch of misfits who say they want to overthrow the existing order, to liberate developers, to bring joy back to technology work, and to enable the business to win in a time of digital disruption. To her surprise, she finds herself drawn ever further into this movement, eventually becoming one of the leaders of the Rebellion, which puts her in the crosshairs of some familiar and very dangerous enemies. The Age of Software is here, and another mass extinction event looms―this is a story about “red shirt” developers and business leaders working together, racing against time to innovate, survive, and thrive in a time of unprecedented uncertainty...and opportunity.

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Book: Fifty Quick Ideas to Improve Your Tests

This book is for cross-functional teams working in an iterative delivery environment, planning with user stories and testing frequently changing software under tough time pressure. This book will help you test your software better, easier and faster. Many of these ideas also help teams engage their business stakeholders better in defining key expectations and improve the quality of their software products.

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Book: Helping People Change

You're trying to help--but is it working? Helping others is a good thing. Often, as a leader, manager, doctor, teacher, or coach, it's central to your job. But even the most well-intentioned efforts to help others can be undermined by a simple truth: We almost always focus on trying to "fix" people, correcting problems or filling the gaps between where they are and where we think they should be. Unfortunately, this doesn't work well, if at all, to inspire sustained learning or positive change. There's a better way. In this powerful, practical book, emotional intelligence expert Richard Boyatzis and Weatherhead School of Management colleagues Melvin Smith and Ellen Van Oosten present a clear and hopeful message. The way to help someone learn and change, they say, cannot be focused primarily on fixing problems, but instead must connect to that person's positive vision of themselves or an inspiring dream or goal they've long held. This is what great coaches do--they know that people draw energy from their visions and dreams, and that same energy sustains their efforts to change, even through difficult times. In contrast, problem-centered approaches trigger physiological responses that make a person defensive and less open to new ideas. The authors use rich and moving real-life stories, as well as decades of original research, to show how this distinctively positive mode of coaching—what they call "coaching with compassion"--opens people up to thinking creatively and helps them to learn and grow in meaningful and sustainable ways. Filled with probing questions and exercises that encourage self-reflection, Helping People Change will forever alter the way all of us think about and practice what we do when we try to help.

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Book: Actionable Gamification

The new era of Gamification and Human-Focused Design optimizes for motivation and engagement over traditional Function-Focused Design. Within the industry, studies on game mechanics and behavioral psychology have become proliferate. However, few people understand how to merge the two fields into experience designs that reliably increases business metrics and generates a return on investment. Gamification Pioneer Yu-kai Chou takes reader on a journey to learn his twelve years of obsessive research in creating the Octalysis Framework, and how to apply the framework to create engaging and successful experiences in their product, workplace, marketing, and personal lives. Effective gamification is a combination of game design, game dynamics, behavioral economics, motivational psychology, UX/UI (User Experience and User Interface), neurobiology, technology platforms, as well as ROI-driving business implementations. This book explores the interplay between these disciplines to capture the core principles that contribute to good gamification design. The goal for this book is to become a strategy guide to help readers master the games that truly make a difference in their lives. Readers who absorb the contents of this book will have literally obtained what many companies pay tens of thousands of dollars to acquire. The ultimate aim is to enable the widespread adoption of good gamification and human-focused design in all types of industries.

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