[Slack to the Rescue] Forever in Down Under


Slack at Atlassian

It’s actually pretty hard to get real data on slack. Most data you can find is diffuse and contains lots of rumours. It seems that especially on Google’s 20 % there are more myths than facts available. 3M and Gore are mostly legend, nothing concrete, almost no details. Atlassian to the rescue! Continue reading

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[Slack to the Rescue] Harder Than It Sounds


Introducing slack, very carefully

I don’t know how slack was introduced at Gore, 3M or Google. We at it-agile introduced slack very carefully. We had big discussions about the concept. Though it was very attractive, we feared the costs. Being a company of programmers and consultants, each day a programmer couldn’t program and a consultant couldn’t consult was lost money. Sure, slack should pay off in the long term, but doubts remained. Continue reading

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[Slack to the Rescue] What You Want to Do


Innovation through slack

This is a seriesof 5 blogposts on slack. Slack is work time in which an employee is free to work on whatever he wants. In this series, I’ll present slack at 3M, Gore, Google, Atlassian, Semco and it-agile, write about the necessary company culture, point out several pitfalls, explain innovation and motivation as the main reasons to introduce slack, and show the possible future of slack from my point of view.

Let’s start with an accident. Continue reading

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Hanlon’s Razor – Comfort in the Assumption of Stupidity

Whenever I’m having a hard time when dealing with the resistance of change at the customer’s; when struggling with the emotionality and unreasonableness of a colleague during a meeting; when facing the stubbornness of a friend in a meeting – so, whenever it seems I’m dealing with some kind of malice, I find a lot of comfort in Hanlon’s Razor. Continue reading

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37 Tasks for a Product Owner’s Job


Product Owner is a full-time job
Engine Order by Ky

In contrast to the Scrum master role which is often questioned whether it is a full-time job, the product owner role is almost never questioned being a full-time job. One exception: Roman Pichler presented “The Partial Product Owner” in his book Agile Product Management with Scrum.

However, in my experience a lot of product owners have problems to focus on their job. Often they are part of some kind of speciality department with lots of commitments not directly related to the product they should develop in their Scrum team. Continue reading

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Repetition in Learning and Mastering


Learning through repetition
(via failblog.org)

Information needs to be presented to a learner in at least 6 different ways to stick in his mind. Repetition rules. On the other hand, an athlete repeats the same technique thousands of times in the same way to get it to stick in his mind. Repetition rules, again. Should you learn in different ways or in the same way? Continue reading

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42 Tasks for a Scrum Master’s Job

Questions like the following are coming up quite often when I do Scrum training or coaching:

Why should the Scrum Master and Project Manager roles be filled different people? (Quora)

Will a scrum master for a team of 10 be a full time position or can a programmer fill this position if highly trained in agile planning? (Quora)

Behind those questions is the assumption that the Scrum Master is not a full time role. The askers of those questions conjecture that you save money by merging two roles or by placing the duty of the two roles on a single person. Continue reading

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