Wednesday, 24 July 2013

Leading Through Vulnerability

When +Jean Tabaka ran her Scaling Collaboration workshop with my team in June, she commented on how open the team was to the experience and asked us how we went about creating an environment where traditionally introverted software engineers, from a diverse range of cultures and backgrounds, were so willing to participate in team activities. From my perspective there were lots of contributing factors eg. the HakasBubble Ups, lean coffee management meetings etc. but it all began with the weekly practise of "walk the walls".

"Walk the walls" came about after I got sick of listening to my coach, +Mark Richards, carry on about what a waste of time my program status meetings were. At this time, I worked in "the business" and as program sponsor  I felt it was my duty to sit down with the program manager once a week to receive an update on the status of the program. Mark, on the other hand, was convinced that there was a deeply embedded culture of fear that was preventing the delivery teams from telling the real story. He was adamant if I spent more time with the teams I would be able to see this for myself.

Wednesday, 10 July 2013

Inspiring Software Engineers to Embrace Facilitation

At the beginning of June, I travelled to Boulder, Colorado to attend and speak at RallyON 2013. This was my first time attending RallyON and I wasn't sure what to expect. I diligently downloaded the Spotme app as suggested by the event organisers and spent a good hour or two trawling through the agenda selecting the sessions to attend. I was travelling with my friend and ex-coach, +Mark Richards, who has always been a huge fan of Rally Agile Fellow, +Jean Tabaka, so I thought I would add Jean and +Laura Burke's breakout session, Scaling Collaboration: Be the Hero Your Agile Teams Need You to Be, to my selections.

On the first afternoon of the conference, Mark and I wandered down to HUB Boulder and found ourselves a couple of seats at a table up the front. Jean and Laura were setting up, writing on flip charts, and directing attendees to sort themselves into tables of 5. It is at this point that I panic, and turn to Mark with what I am sure was a look of sheer terror, and said "You didn't tell me this was going to be a joining in activity type session!". Mark smiles, clearly amused at my discomfort, and says "What did you think was going to happen at a Jean Tabaka session?"

+Bryce Day Scaling Collaboration session - packed room, just finished first collaborative task - nice work! #RallyON13