April 10th, 2013 (Trial Run)


Topics that made the cut

  1. Other uses for Lean Coffee

    • Scott tried it for family meetings, but struggled to get participation from adolescents. Hypothetical suggestions included staff-meetings (which put a burden on managers to sell topics, instead of just announce them; but carried a risk of political power derailing the topics)

    • Talked about using Lean Coffee in other industries, which lead to talk about agile in other industries.

    • Dan has shared LC with his sister, who works in aviation. But she has yet to apply it.

  2. Being on a software team in a non-software company

    • Group talked about communicate gaps with stakeholders and sponsors. Most often, about unrealistic expectations that software be simple, easy and quick. Some stories were shared about the opposite, when stakeholders expected long, complicated cycles for what was a very small task.

    • Three Potato Day!

  3. The Phoenix Project

    • Talked about “The Phoenix Project” by Gene Kim, Kevin Behr and George Spafford. Only one of us had read it yet. Focused conversation about aligning development and IT work with business objectives. Talked about how this requires talking about the core business. Tech folks have to face a risk of talking outside of their domain (tech).

  4. Conway’s Law

    • Paraphrased as “organizations will build structures that conform to the communication patterns of the organization”.

    • Talked about aligning organizational structure and desired technical architecture.

  5. Remote work/collaboration

    • Talked about Marissa Mayer and Yahoo!

    • Patrick shared success stories about teams with remote devs and remote clients. Main obstacles were retrospectives.

    • Talked about using skype and shared desktops for remote pairing. Many had found that remote pairing resulted in more engaged pairs than on-site pairing.

    • Justin realized he’s against remote work because of the low levels of collaboration he sees in on-site work.

  6. Interviewing for a senior dev/Hiring, what to look for on both sides of the table

    • Talked about interview techniques, including “stress to applicant” and see how they perform. Rich impersonates angry, irrational customers.

    • Companies hire to fill gaps. Seek candidates that satisfy that gap.

    • Some candidates look for a gap between themselves and the job. Find the right thing to grow into.

    • Do we expect senior developers to have time for github, etc? Maybe they are too busy having a life.

    • Agreed that we’d expect senior folks to have figured out how to work forty hour weeks and go home.

  7. Suggestions for QA tools/QA in an agile environment/What could you test (automated) that you don’t yet test?

  8. Backlog Grooming: How often/Regather Requirements

    • Found a general need to have someone represent the customer on a day-to-day basis, as most customers don’t take on daily backlog maintenance.

    • Big backlogs need to be thrown out.

    • The relationships for a team/project determine who can add to the backlog. With high-trust and daily attention to the backlog from the PO, anyone can modify the backlog. In low-trust, restrict write access.