LitheBlog

Agile insights from LitheSpeed
24
Mar

CSM 202: Advanced Agile Coaching & Management, by Jessie Shternshus and Arlen Bankston

Friends, I have something exciting for you.  After years of training courses like the CSM and CSPO, which I’ve tweaked, redefined and revamped many times, I find myself truly excited again by my newest project, a new class which is essentially the next step for ScrumMasters.  I’m calling it Advanced Agile Coaching & Management, because it goes well beyond Scrum, and I believe that it will be simultaneously the most practical and entertaining course I’ve delivered yet. 

 

But I’m not working alone this time; I’m teaming up with one of the very best trainers I know, longtime LitheSpeed friend and colleague Jessie Shternshus, the owner of The Improv Effect.  You might recognize her from such gigs as the keynote of Agile 2016; the giant orange, for those of you in the know; who else do you know that has run an interactive keynote with over 2,000 participants?  She’s a force of nature: smart, funny, and incredibly adaptive, and her theatrical experience helps to make her a brilliant partner and a fantastic complement to me, both stylistically and contentwise.

 

Some of you might be wondering what exactly to expect from the class, as thus far we’ve only publicized a high-level agenda, so I wanted to use this post to share some deeper details of what we’ve got planned.

 

The first day is focused on managing and facilitating agile teams. We’ll be using almost purely interactive techniques to demonstrate this; not a slideshow, but a series of experiences.  We’ll introduce a host of tactics you’ve almost certainly never encountered, from improvisational exercises to board games.  For example: moving motivators, draw toast, mindreading, and La Boca… come and see.    We’ll experience methods for building new teams and planning their first endeavors, from choosing the right people and skills to physical layout of team rooms, and you’ll find these techniques work equally well for reinvigorating existing teams.  We’ll show you some clever ways to manage stakeholders, give you some sneaky but effective assessment techniques, and provide you with a batch of games to convince your stakeholders that agile techniques do work, while you teach your teams how they work.

 

The second day is an agile toolkit, focused on equipping you with games, tools and facilitation patterns that have proven most impactful over the nearly two decades that your teachers have been employing them.  We have some tricks for selling agility, ways to address common challenges in financing and budgeting, ways to launch projects more rapidly and effectively, clever twists on facilitating (or even replacing) classic agile ceremonies, tricks for distributed development teams, and guidance on the next wave of agility, creating agile organizations.  These techniques are oft borrowed from outside of the typical agile world, so chances are you’ve never seen a good portion of them.  Rapid value stream mapping, analytical failure determination, design of large program boards, napkin pitches and more are in the mix here, among dozens of other techniques.  

 

The bottom line: If you’re a ScrumMaster, Product Manager/Owner, functional manager or simply a follower of the advancing state of agile arts, you should take this class.  It would be a good time even if you don’t give a whit about agility, and for those among you who live this stuff daily, it will be invaluable.  I’m not typically one given to wild superlatives, but you have my personal guarantee that this class is a winner.  Hope to see you there!

See more and register here.

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