Don’t tie yourself to a bad developer.

Podcast on finding an agile developer

What does finding the perfect tie have in common with our latest episode? Well actually a lot. Below you will see my amazing tie rack with all my great ties. I’ll admit it’s not the greatest collection of ties but they do the job. Recently I took a step back and looked at my ties. Good lord some of them were from the early 90s. My better half (my wife) advised me to get some more hip updated ties. She is my fashion muse and I’ve learned over the years to listen to her on certain things. This was one of those moments.

So I went tie shopping. While it wasn’t hard, it wasn’t easy. I had to think thru my wardrobe. What did I have for shirts? Thats important because fashion etiquette says plain ties with patterned shirts and patterned ties with plain shirts. I like that etiquette and followed it. Nothing to say I could wear patterned shirts with patterned ties but thats not me. Jack doesn’t roll that way. Doug might, but Jack won’t ever.

Looking for a developer to join your team is a lot like buying ties. Sure you want to find someone you like but also think about what is expected of them in an agile world. Do patterned developers look nice with a patterned team? So remember that you may have found the perfect developer but if they don’t fit your team, then it might not work like you expected.

Looking for a Agile BSA

Looking for an Agile BSA

The topic for today is a tough one in the real world to relate to, but I think I have the perfect example. With the football preseason is full swing and every fan across the country watching their team closely to see if their team will be good. For most fans, this is a chance to see the Quarterback their team: drafted, signed or traded for. For most teams, the season will be pinned on the hopes that they found their guy.

If you are a Cardinals fan (we pity you), then you most certainly know what I’m talking about. You signed Sam Bradford last year to see if your team could make the playoffs, while Rosen was drafted in the first round to be the future. Last year didn’t end like you maybe hoped, but this years draft led to your team trading Rosen to Miami and drafting Kyler Murray number 1 overall. Time will tell if this is in fact your future franchise Quarterback who can lead this team back to the playoffs. Comparisons of what RG 3, Lamar Jackson and Andrew Luck have done in their rookie campaigns will give hope to this years rookie class. However when the team is wrong about their choice at quarterback, then fans hope that next year will be better. The team that comes to mind is the Jacksonville Jaguars. Yes, they got rid of Bortles for Foles to see if thats the answer.

Finding a QB is hard

Much like finding a Quarterback that will help the team move in the right direction is difficult, some teams just know what to look for from a future quarterback like the Baltimore Ravens and Indianapolis Colts. They stick to specifics around what skills they look for and what they want in player. I haven’t seen those teams reach, and will pass on players that don’t meet expectations.

Finding the right BSA for your agile team can be extremely tricky. Agile BSAs understand how to write good user stories. They understand the size of a story even before the team estimates it. They understand that their work is consumed by the team, not by the Product Owner. I think a good agile BSA is much like a great NFL quarterback, they are unicorns. You can find them but it isn’t easy.

This poor quarterback will never have a chance to succeed and he knows it.

Looking for a Product Owner

Podcast on hiring an agile Product Owner

Comparing a relevant topic to “Looking for a Product Owner” was a little tough this week. Good news, I do have something that relates. Its actually because I’m changing up my wardrobe with different brand clothes. The hard part about this, is finding new items that are comfortable yet work with my body shape.

Doug’s closet.

I have always been amazed at how difficult it is to find different dress pants or jeans that fit. I am often surprised that when I go to try pants on, they can either fit perfectly or look absolutely ridiculous on me. I’m at the point and time now where I know if I want to try something new, I should probably put aside a couple hours. I have learned my lesson to not go and buy 4 of the same items until I put them into my normal rotation to see how it will all work out. In the past I’ve been caught by having clothes that fit when I tried them on but horribly shrunk up or fell apart in the wash. So what I have learned to do is buy 1 of a couple items to see if I would want more added to my wardrobe. By doing this little test, I have saved myself a lot of time by avoiding mistakes that would have led me to buy more items in the future.

Just like figuring out what clothes will work for you, searching for a perfect Product Owner is just as difficult. Thats why in our latest podcast, we leave you with advice on how to find them. Often you have to test their abilities to ensure you have the right person.

Looking for a Scrum Master

What to look for when trying to hire a Scrum Master.

Everybody has a picture in their mind of what their ideas should be like. Just like grocery shopping, we expect that tomatoes should be red and taste like a tomato (unless you like green tomatoes). Highly recommend deep fried green tomatoes for anyone looking to try something different. I digress from my point. When I look for Cheetos to snack on I want them to be crunchy and have a cheese flavor. When you buy generic Cheetos or knock off Cheetos, you are rolling the dice and might end up with a sub par fake Cheeto. If that didn’t resonate with you, then try buying knock of cola and expect it to taste like Coca-Cola. Just isn’t the same.

Here in Minnesota, we love to fish for and eat Walleye. It’s our state fish and something we are proud of. A few years back, it was being reported that local restaurants were advertising Walleye dinners but actually serving Zander. Zander is a fish that is not local to Minnesota, but looks and tastes just like Walleye. You can’t tell people they are eating walleye when in fact they are eating Zander. Thats an outrage and a form of “bait and switch”. Yes that was a fishing pun and I’m damn proud I came up with it.

This is what makes hiring a Scrum Master difficult. Everybody and their dog can get a Scrum Master certification. That doesn’t mean they understand what agile servant leadership means. Matter of fact, it is often very difficult to find someone who had a good understanding of the role. Often Agile is easy to understand and even more difficult to master. Just as people dining at restaurants thought they were getting Walleye, instead they where tricked with Zander. Just like in the business world, companies can be tricked by Scrum Master certifications. In this podcast we give some advice on how to a true (or semi true).

That ain’t no walleye son.