I recently started coaching a little league team. This is my 3rd year, in part or in whole. And like software projects, it’s funny how you always seem to have some of the same concerns, right at the beginning.
For this baseball league, I have no control over the random seeding of players that I receive. With that comes a lack of knowledge of skill level, experience, athleticism, or if they even understand the game. To boot- I get one, 1-hour practice with these guys to prepare for the first game. Enter the conundrum- where do I start? How do you eat an elephant?
One bite at a time of course. But more importantly, where do you start?
Detracting from the baseball metaphor, this is the same as walking into any new engagement or project where I have to ‘be the expert’. I find that there are common issues and problems with many project teams that are new to agility- but the difference is the symptom to those issues and problems. Kind of like coming down with a bug, here is my ‘antibiotics salvo’ that I like to use as a catalyst for agile change:
- Card Wall. It’s nice to know what work you have to do, right?
- Daily Scrum. Talking, face to face. It’s the new email.
- Product Owner Enlistment. If the biz is on our side, who could be against us?
All of this can be done without ever saying the ‘a-word’…
I know- you are dying to know what I did with my hour- right? Offensively we spent a little time making contact with a swing, and running to (through) first base. Defensively, we spent time fielding the ball and throwing to first base. Incidentally, these are the only things that we will have to do in our first game.