Saturday, August 31, 2013

Dogfooding - Be Your Own Customer

Dogfooding - Eating your own dog food, a slang term used to reference a scenario in which a company (usually, a computer software company) uses its own product to demonstrate the quality and capabilities of the product. Dogfooding can be a way for a company to demonstrate confidence in its own products. One perceived advantage beyond marketing is that dogfooding allows employees to test their company's products in real-life scenarios. All that said, however, it’s important to remember that dogfooding is not a replacement for traditional (or non-traditional) user testing.

Agile - Planning Poker

Planning Poker is an agile estimating technique and extremely simple to play while also being accurate enough to use for agile planning.

Lean start-up - What is Innovation accounting?

How to define, measure, and communicate progress with your internal and external stakeholders?

Agile -Visualize Agile Project

Why and how to visualize an agile project?

Agile -user stories estimation overview and tips

Overview of the most basic agile estimation tips

'Lead by example' and leading agile teams.

“We must be the change we wish to see . . . “ – Mahatma Gandhi We need people who lead by example and who live the Agile mindset.

Fighting Poor Practice - Go Pair Programing

Pair or collaborative programming is where two programmers develop software side by side at one computer. This practice has been nominated several times in the last decades as an improved way of developing software. Why ? Because the end defect content is statistically lower; Programmers solve problems faster; They are more satisfied ;They learn good techniques and habits and many more...

Failing is part of the game - When you green you grow.

“Fail fast” = “Learn fast” - to learn something effectively you must make mistakes to learn from the mistakes. doing what you know is fun, but it will not improve you.

Things we learned from the Japanese - lean agile and more...

The Characteristics of Agile Software Processes

Automated Agile Testing Strategy

Overall, with automated testing we are aiming for increased project delivery speed with built in quality. “Are we building the right system” & “Are we building the system right” – This is a fundamental principle in “Agile Testing” where we (as Testers) shouldn’t just be focusing on finding bugs at the end of the development cycle. Instead we should be getting involved with the development as early as possible for example by helping to drive out requirements as & when they’re being worked on . An important part of test strategy is to decide the focus of each type of test and the testing mix.

Coahing with humor - Take yourself less seriously

"Humor is infectious. The sound of roaring laughter is far more contagious than any cough, sniffle, or sneeze. When laughter is shared, it binds people together and increases happiness and intimacy. Laughter also triggers healthy physical changes in the body. " Laughing with others is more powerful than laughing alone.

Emotional intelligence at the workplace - It Impacts the Bottom Line

Working with People Means Working with Emotions. Organization success is strongly influenced by personal qualities such as perseverance, self-control, and skill in getting along with others. Developing emotional intelligence in the workplace means acknowledging that emotions are always present, and doing something intelligent with them. Organizations with higher levels of emotional intelligence reap benefits in productivity and success.

“Feeling Into” - Coach By Walking In Your Client’s Shoes

Everyone wants to deal with someone who “gets them”–someone who really understands what they are going through. But do you really understand their position? I mean fully grasp what all of this means to your clients on a business and personal level? The word “empathy”  as rendering of the German Einfühlung, “feeling into”—is only a century old, but people have been interested for a long time in the moral implications of feeling our way into the lives of others. Empathic listening is a way of listening and responding to another person that improves mutual understanding and trust.

Simple Coaching - When seeking to change minds, Simple is a good attitude

It is very hard to be simple enough to be good. Emerson, Ralph Waldo ― Leonardo da Vinci Simple things are easy to understand, accept and agree.

Team coaching - Elevate results

"Team coaching means working with the whole team to enhance their self-awareness and the mutual regard and respect they have for each other, with the focus on improving the quality of relationships and identifying what encourages and what gets in the way of the teams' effectiveness and performance. "

‘knowledge from within’ - Develop your coaching Intuition

Some things we know we know, but we don’t know how we know them? “There is no such thing as an intuitive person tout court. Intuition is a domain-specific ability.” Intuition is our ability to use the collection of our `experience`. The good news are that as a coach your intuition suppose to be in that field , we just need to learn what it looks like and how to use it. Don't expect to have it in other fields.

"Nobody can make you feel inferior without your consent" – Eleanor Roosevelt - Criticism

Criticism can be a useful self-management barometer. But, an unwanted, yet all too common consequence of criticism is discouragement. There's a fine line between ignoring the views of other people and being seriously affected by absolutely everything they have to say. Finding and maintaining a balance is the key. People who have difficulty dealing criticism are less likely to succeed in their profession. Knowing to deal with criticism and to identify best practices of giving one , is a required coaching skill .

Peer Coaching - Continuously becoming more successful

Peer Coaching was originally developed as a cost-effective way to provide quality coaching to mid-level, high potential and emerging leaders. The result is a more collaborative leadership base committed to continuously becoming more successful. The examples in this track are mostly from the teaching area but they are a good fit to every other area. The process was originally developed by Andrew Thorn who later partnered with Marshall Goldsmith to extend many of the benefits of the Goldsmith Coaching Model.

What is the Best way to make mistakes and win? Play video games

Play is a vital part of being a person, and failure is a vital part of play. What is the role of failure in video games? Do players prefer games where they do not feel responsible for failing? My boy for instance, he's a champion in computer games. The kind that has levels, adventures, where the main player gains power and knowledge... And he didn't start playing from the highest level becoming a champ without making mistakes, right?! He kept failing, fixing, repeating, experiencing again, getting better, failing again.. and in the end he feels on top of the world. Why?

Roles People Play in Groups

“…by organizing people into a team, managers can easily identify and use the specific strengths of each individual member to the best advantage.” –Debra Housel, Team Dynamics

Clarifying and reflecting in coaching - Understanding is a true representation of what was meant to be said

However good you think your listening skills are, the only person who can tell you if you have understood correctly or not is the speaker. Clarifying is about ensuring you have a clear understanding of what your coachee is saying and thinking and in doing so you are also ensuring that they too have a clear understanding of their own situation. Reflecting is about reflecting back the words, thoughts and feelings that you have picked up from your coachee and serves both the purpose of showing that you are listening which in turn helps build rapport with your coachee and also helps the client to hear what they have just said and prompt further exploration.

Futurespective: Start Influence your Future

In a Futurespective you imagine that you are in the future. It is a fantastic tool that gives a good sense of control over the issues ahead and leads to practical action to enable better goals achievement. It helps a group of individuals establish better collaboration and communication patterns as well as good process and engagement. Futurespective is not limited to group environment and can be easily used in personal coaching environment.

8 Hour Workday - The Beginning of the End

The 8-hour shift makes sense for physical labor and manufacturing work, but with information workers it’s a creativity killer. Nearly all tasks involve creative or strategic thinking. The way we structure the workday these days will probably not lead to a productive work. Want can we do about it? And what are the changes we look for?

“Thank You” - Well, This too Boosts Productivity.

According to positive psychologists, saying 'thank you' is no longer just good manners, it is also beneficial to the self. To take the best known examples, studies have suggested that being grateful can improve well-being, physical health, can strengthen social relationships, produce positive emotional states and help us cope with stressful times in our lives.

Friday, August 30, 2013

Bullies (Emotional Manipulators) at the Workplace - It costs us!

Bullying at work can take various forms from an aggressive form of shouting, yelling to demeaning you in front of others, overlooking your achievements, ignoring , dumping all the work on you and giving unreasonable deadlines. The dangers they can cause to a workplace are numerous. Not only can they push talented employees out the door, but they can also pit employees against each other, set employees up for failure and make strained relationships even worse. Statistics state that the antics of one serial bully in the workplace has the potential to reduce the performance of their victims by half, and that of other employees by up to 33 per cent. There are things you need to know as a coach and this is one of them!

Workplace is Like High School- Cliques

In almost every human situation, likes and dislikes, alliances and exclusions start manifesting themselves. You may find yourself dealing with unseen barriers between groups that are reluctant to help one another, don’t share information, and sometimes even actively hinder another person or group’s success. cliques can build employee morale by strengthening bonds of friendship beyond what your day-to-day work or can take your entire productivity down.

Repetition in Coaching - The more we hear something the more likely we are to believe in it

Success in an Organizational change also includes a good "selling" ideas , methods, mindsets and more... . The more you repeat the benefits of the product or service you are selling, the more it becomes natural to you and your prospect. As a coach you cant do without it. This is perhaps the most intuitive principle of learning, traceable to ancient Egyptian and Chinese education, with records dating back to approximately 4,400 and 3,000 B.C. Repetition is necessary to retain a certain piece of information to memory. Repetition also breeds familiarity.

Dealing with the backlog (overview for product owners PO)

As a product owner , I would like to know how to manage my backlog fro customer expectations to delivery . How? - The Product backlog is a list of everything the Product Owner wishes to see in the final product. It's ordered in a single rank order, often from highest priority to the lowest priority.

Agile and software Architecture design- overview

It would be grossly unfair to say that agile methods do not require any prior design. Agile methods are adaptive, not unplanned or undisciplined. I am by no means an evangelist for these techniques, but I do recognize that they go far beyond merely jumping in and coding away.

Why go agile? (For executives)

Agile adoption is on the rise, and becoming the mainstream for product development and for other areas of the organization such as marketing and sales , and for good reason. Agile companies can dramatically increase productivity and shorten release cycles, while improving quality, which is why almost 70% of organizations are now using some type of agile process Agile for CEOs - Approach to Happy customers and Healthy Bottom lines. Agile is proven to work well for all sizes of organizations .

Free online Kanban tools

My top Free Kanban tools.

Agile Estimation using Silent Grouping and Sizing

“Silent Grouping is a facilitation technique for getting people to group related items without talking. Jean Tabaka has a summary of the technique in her book ‘Collaboration Explained’ as part of a set of techniques used to help teams process large amounts of information. Silent Grouping has several advantages. It is fast, which in turn leads to significant time and cost savings.”

Scrum sprint review

The sprint review meeting is valuable to the development team as it provides an opportunity for the team to show its work directly and get recognition from the stakeholders.

Stories of Marketing Going Agile

These days the ability to react quickly on social channels, to nip things in the bud, and to encourage interaction and engagement is highly important. Its leave or die. You need to have a rapid response in real time to your customers’ needs. Here are some companies who did it.

Agile Friendly Workspace - The Physical Environment.

What an Agile office space may look like? It should allow for collaboration and real time information sharing; Support the team mindset and framework; creating a space where work can get done...

Agile/Lean - Fail Early, Fail Fast, Fail Often

"That day, the Wright brothers finally arrived at an ultimate success, but the path was filled with disappointing detours and a daunting string of failures. Innovation and failure go hand in hand. With technology and business cycles moving so quickly, companies no longer have the luxury of waiting a year or more to release a product into the marketplace. As a result, companies are embracing new techniques and approaches in an effort to compress their internal product development cycles to match the external cycles of the market.

Learning agile through Games

A game is an excellent learning tool .In the agile community we use a lot of games ,check out game examples and relevant resources.

Testing With an Agile Mindset

The Agile testing mindset may be considered to be one of the important things when implementing Agile quality and testing methods. While many see “Agile testing” as just “having the QA and development part of one team”, actually it is much beyond. Agile testing challenging the core mindset of the organization regarding the role of the QA. Without dealing with the agile testing mindset , we may achieve a limited or, in most cases, a costly, quality outcome, whereas we could have performed better and cheaper.

The Agile PMO

Advanced Product (PO) : How to coach a team for user story mapping

Story map is a way of organizing stories that provides richer context and can help with release planning. Our initial goal is to understand the various users and uses of the whole system. This track is aimed for agile coaches wishing to coach the team on how to create a story map

Agile marketing - Overview

Agile Marketing is a powerful approach to marketing that takes its inspiration from Agile Development. Agile marketing is good at being fast, it`s important though to not just do things efficiently, but also to make sure that you are doing the things that really matter.

10 Things Executives Need to Know about Agile

Contracting agile project

There is a definite tension between the need to express contractual obligations, and the need to embrace change. The relationship between cost, time, and scope has to be nailed down. So how does a project contract fit into an agile project?

TED (and others ) on Games

Games (And video games) has an amazing impact over our life. It has a positive impacts on our brain ,on our ability to solve problems ,on our behavior , our ability to grow and on many more areas ...

Flipped Classroom

Flipped Classroom is currently the hottest topic in higher education teaching and learning. Universities are consumed with finding the best ways to turn traditional education upside down by using the shared time in the classroom in ways that are as active, dynamic, and engaging as possible, while leaving the reading and lecture watching for students to cover at home. So what is the best, most efficient way to introduce the flipped classroom?

I Do, We Do , You Do - Truly 'Can' Learning

Internalize a concepts through gradual release - The “I Do It, We Do It, You Do It” method is a simple, yet effective way to teach new concepts to students, kids and everyone. When practiced consistently it will allow for a greater depth of understanding and confidence with the learners as they apply the concepts independently in the tasks and activities assigned to them.

Creativity is not only right - Left Brain vs. Right Brain

There is a long held belief supported by neurological data that personality traits and how a person analyzes information depends highly on whether they are right- or left-brained thinkers. is it? When it comes to left Brain versus right, do you mean left front, left middle, left rear? We now understand that when it comes to creativity it's not just left-right, it's also up-down - it's the whole brain.

Brainstorming - Does it really work ?

We're still on the path of discovering whether brainstorming is a technique that extracts the best out of people or if it's a method that suppresses creativity. Are there reasons for that? and what can we do about it? The debate :

Negotiating basic Tips and tricks - Visiting 9 resources

Visual thinking - What is it?

Visual thinking, also called visual learning, is a proven method of organizing ideas graphically - with concept maps, mind maps and webs. Scientifically based research demonstrates that visual learning techniques improve memory, organization, critical thinking and planning.