dsmAgile 2018

Discuss. Discover. Learn.

Friday, September 28, 2018 from 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM

Community Choice Credit Union Convention Center
833 5th Ave
Des Moines IA, 50309
Register


SPEAKERS





Mindy Bohannon

Why do we do what we do? To what end? After doing database development and other assorted IT roles, Mindy thrives in being working with a team as an Agile Business Analyst for clients and coaching peers on Excella projects. She solves business problems, develops solutions that drive the business forward, and relates to others with humanity, flexibility, trust, and collaboration during the process. Mindy has spoken on analyst and professional development topics at many local and national conferences over the years and encourages others to share their knowledge as well. Let’s ask the questions, learn the why’s, and continue talking about possibilities, options, goals, and what-ifs.

"Judge me by my questions, not my answers." –Voltaire


Andy Van Fleet

Andy has a passion for building businesses, cultures and user experiences. He deeply believes creating a culture that fosters collaboration, creative freedom and honest interactions directly influence the quality of User Experience (UX) solutions.

With a history of over 20 years in UX, he and his team have designed solutions for customers in the following segments: missile-defense, healthcare, agriculture, fin-tech, insurance and autonomous vehicles. Andy’s unique ability to think creatively, while deeply understanding complex business challenges, has led to highly successful user experiences. One of his most memorable projects was creating a touch-screen interface in an armored vehicle used to detect plastic IED’s.

Andy’s family history of entrepreneurship drew him to start his own business in 2001. As a business owner, he thrives at the intersection of creativity and strategy. This combination has helped him grow Visual Logic and land a spot on the prestigious Inc. 500 list.


Barry Forrest

As a Principal Consultant with Improving in Dallas, Barry Forrest is a web developer, Scrum Master, and agilist. Barry loves helping make work life better for teams and leaving things in a better state than when he was introduced to the situation. Barry is also an award-winning homebrewer and an avid amateur photographer.


Gianfranco Berardi

Gianfranco Berardi (he | him | his) is a part-time indie game developer who loves to encourage curiosity, support creativity, and promote continuous learning. He likes to figure out how things work, whether it involves the dynamic systems of a computer game or the large interactions within an organization.

Leveraging the insight he gained from owning and operating his own game development business since 2006 and working professionally in software development within larger businesses owned by others, he loves to figure out how business and IT can be aligned rather than dysfunctional.

He is passionate about inclusion because he believes in the inherent worth and dignity of every person. Your best work comes when you are able to be comfortable being your authentic self.

On this blog, he writes about all aspects of running an indie game development business, including game design, development, publishing, and marketing.


Kent McDonald

Kent writes about and practices software product development. He has IT and product development experience in a variety of industries including financial services, health insurance, nonprofit, and automotive. Kent practices his craft as Content Curator at Agile Alliance and provides just in time resources for product owners and business analysts at KBP.media. When not writing or product managing, Kent is his family’s #ubersherpa, listens to jazz and podcasts (but not necessarily podcasts about jazz), and collects national parks.

Kent is author of Beyond Requirements: Analysis with an Agile Mindset, and co-author of Stand Back and Deliver: Accelerating Business Agility.


Brandon Carlson

A self-proclaimed nerd, Brandon Carlson works for Lean TECHniques Inc., an IT consultancy that helps teams deliver high-value, high-quality products to market. Passionate about elevating IT performance, over the past twenty years he has helped numerous organizations from startups to Fortune 100 companies improve their product development and delivery systems. Brandon's interests include behavioral psychology and software development professionalism. He can be reached on Twitter and just about everywhere as ‘bcarlso’ and at bcarlso@leantechniques.com.


Nate Adams

Nate has worked professionally in the IT industry for nearly 20 years developing software and mentoring and leading teams in a wide range of environments from small companies with dozens of employees to large global enterprises. As a full-stack software developer, Nate has written code and developed architecture from the UI through the middleware and to the back-end. As an Agile trainer and coach, Nate has developed and coached Agile teams in many industries using a broad array of practices and methodologies.

Nate is especially passionate about helping teams continuously improve how they do work. To this end, Nate acts as an advocate for both team members as well as stakeholders; striving to make work less stressful by pushing for a sustainable pace while establishing processes and methodologies that emphasize quality.


Josh Carson

Hey everyone. I have been a developer, tester, product person, and almost all the Scrum roles now at John Deere over the past 10 years. My focus has been on making sure all the distributed pieces and their teams can all function and work together so that the end customer has an experience worth using. Most recently, I have become the John Deere API Guy. This means that I now focusing on finding ways to get multiple companies to function and work together.

Outside of work, I continually focus on improvement. How can we maintain the house better? How can we write a better research paper? How can we make sure this Dungeons and Dragons adventure is more engaging to the players? How can we get this AI to finally beat a player at a specific board game? I believe there is no perfect and everything can be made better. I try to live that both at work and in my personal life.


Allison Pollard

Allison Pollard helps people discover their agile instincts and develop their coaching abilities. As an agile coach with Improving in Dallas, Allison enjoys mentoring others to become great Scrum Masters and fostering communities that provide sustainability for agile transformations. In her experience, applying agile methods improves delivery, strengthens relationships, and builds trust between business and IT. Allison is also a Certified Professional Co-Active Coach, a foodie, and proud glasses wearer.


Andy Singleton

How can we improve our society through innovation? How can big companies innovate at a scale that will have impact? Andy has approached these questions from many angles during a career as a programmer, software company founder, and author. He built his first computer from chips. He was employee number 2 at Wall Street research shop SNL Financial, founder of ebusiness consultancy Cambridge Interactive, founder of enterprise software company PowerSteering, and founder of SaaS company Assembla. While at Assembla he supported more than 20,000 distributed agile software teams and studied continuous delivery process. He describes the software innovation engine that has allowed companies like Amazon and Google to dominate capitalism as MAXOS – MAtriX Of Services. He is the author of “A Guide to the New Continuous Agile” and is currently under agreement to write a book on the economics of innovation, “The Flood: Decoding the New Economic Order.”


Jeff Byron

Jeff Byron leads User Design for Veritas Technologies. Prior to Veritas, Jeff held many different positions in software within Symantec, Target.com, Digital River, and Thomson Reuters. The first time he tried to "do Agile" was at Digital River in 2009 when launching his client's (Microsoft) first web store in Brazil selling Office 2010. Since then, Jeff has led many transformations around "being agile" with teams ranging from 15 to 700. He enjoys sharing what he has learned and continuing to learn himself.


Tim Ottinger

Tim is a long-time programmer (since 1979), reviewer, speaker, writer. He has been active in many of the big changes in software over the past 36 years (including Design Patterns, Object-Oriented Design, and Agile software development).

In addition to his contributions in "Clean Code" and "Agile In A Flash", Tim's articles appeared in the C++ Journal, Pragmatic Bookshelf, InfoQ, CIO, and SmartBear.

Tim is one of the crew of experts at Industrial Logic, a premier agile consultancy, eLearning vendor, and thought leader. Here he joins with other industry experts to help people develop the skills that will make them awesome.

Tim muses about of his experiences and ideas on the Agile Otter blog and the Industrial Logic company blog.


Skylar Watson

Skylar Watson is a software consultant and owner of SkyNet software solutions where he implements high-value software to satisfy customers needs. Skylar works with companies both domestically and internationally providing assistance in adopting agile software practices.


SESSIONS



Mindy Bohannon

Agile and Scrum at the Speed of Light

Slides

Cleveland’s GiveCamp is the most magical, tiring, and worthwhile 48 hours anyone will experience professionally. For example, in 2015, 200 techies volunteered their talents and passion to help 19 non-profits with projects including data collection, websites, GPS-enabled mobile app, an educational online game, and database applications. How does so much work get done in such little amount of time? Agile in hyperdrive – standups every 4 hours, adhoc swarming with heavy hitter devs roaming the projects, and lots of free food and drinks to keep everyone fortified.

This case study reviews how so much work gets done in such a short amount of time. Each GiveCamp weekend consists of 48 hours to developer, complete, and hand-off the sites or apps to the nonprofit to be self-sufficient in using and maintaining it thereafter. The organizations are prepped to have a Product Owner on site the entire weekend sitting right there with the techies on the team, ready to make decisions on the spot and keep development moving forward. If something isn’t working – the team can immediately pivot. A lot of intriguing functionality came from asking “it would be great if our site could…”. A scrummaster attends standup every 4 hours, teamwork reigns as everyone maps out the stories to accomplish the goal, and pairing and collaboration amongst everyone is key. It helps that the location, hyped up wifi, office supplies RedBull, coffee, ice cream, and all meals and beverages are donated by local companies to keep the teams going.


Andy Van Fleet

Useful, Usable and Desirable

Slides

UX is not about making things pretty. It’s about designing products that work. Products that work are typically useful, usable and desirable. In this talk, we’ll focus on the UX process and how to make products that; correctly solve the problem, work well for end-users and are elegantly designed. {take away = an in-depth view of the UX process}


Barry Forrest

Brewing Great Agile Team Dynamics: No More "Bitter Beer Face" Communications

Slides

Ever find yourself making a sour face after talking to a coworker? Wishing your team meetings felt more like an engaging social hour? There is hope. Those everyday conflicts where something seems “off” after a conversation are often related to differences in communication styles. 

When team members understand themselves and others, there’s less conflict, more collaboration, and better working relationships. The DiSC model can help you understand why your team behaves the way it does and how to build trust for a more agile team. 

In this interactive session, agile coaches Allison Pollard and Barry Forrest will introduce the DiSC model to explain the four behavior types that are the ingredients in any team, then explore the characteristics of these ingredients and how they react with one another. Join them to learn about the behavior styles of you and your team using DiSC, how to communicate better together, and increase trust in the team. You'll leave with a common language that your team can use to better understand themselves and adapt their behaviors with others.


Gianfranco Berardi

You're Not a Code Monkey, So Stop Acting Like One!

Slides

A lot of people think the job of a software developer is merely to write code, specifically code that they were told to write by their boss.

A lot of people are wrong.

Organizations don't need programmers, and they don't need code. What they need are problem identifiers and problem solvers. They need opportunity recognizers and realizers. And whether they know it or not (and to be fair, many do not), they need their software developers to act as full partners in making decisions and deciding strategy.

If you are a software developer, you have the opportunity and the responsibility to leverage your expertise and skills to help your organization see what is actually possible and accomplish it, to see alternatives that are cheaper, faster, or just plain better, whether you work in an exciting startup environment or sit in a beige cube in a sea of beige cubes.

You are responsible for not only creating value through technology but also for maintaining that capability, and you don't get to pretend that "they won't let me" is a valid excuse.

Merely slinging code is not enough. You are not a code monkey following orders. You are a first-class citizen in the organization, more than capable of driving value as well as delivering it. Let's discuss how you (and your organization) can start acting like it.


Kent McDonald

How to build shared understanding with example mapping

Slides

One of the primary responsibilities of business analysts, product owners, and all other product people is to build and maintain a shared understanding of the outcome your team seeks to deliver. Conversations are an effective way to build that shared understanding.

You may find yourself wondering who should be included in those conversations, when do you have these conversations, what should you talk about, and how do you remember what you said?

Join Kent McDonald as he introduces example mapping, a technique that helps you structure your conversations and build a shared understanding.

You’ll learn how to determine the right people to include in your conversations, when the best time is to have those conversations, how to structure those conversations, and how to remember what you said.


Brandon Carlson

Dude, Where’s My Law?

Over the years more and more people have adopted Agile processes and practices to achieve better outcomes for their organizations. As with anything that goes from relative obscurity into the mainstream, many of the driving principles behind it tend to get lost in the shuffle. In response to this, one of our industry’s best, David Hussman, coined “Dude’s Law” to remind people of this drift away from the core principles behind the way we work. Join me at dsmAgile while we revisit Dude’s Law, touching on what it means today and what it can mean tomorrow.


Nate Adams

Explaining Agile to your grandmother, your 5 year-old or your boss

A couple decades ago, when I started my life as a software developer, my grandma often tried to understand what it was that I did for a living so she could dote on me to her friends (as good Grandmothers are wont to do). Unfortunately, there were some big gaps in our shared context that made it hard for her to truly grasp how I spent my time on an average day. As I've started to spend less time writing code, and more time coaching and training teams in Agile practices and methodologies, I've found that my inability to explain what I do for a living has grown from effecting elderly relatives to just people in general. Interestingly, even as I speak to people who should understand, it often feels that we're speaking different languages or about completely different topics. Even when we use the same words, we're often not actually talking about the same thing.

This talk is about building bridges over gaps in our shared understanding. There are a lot of misrepresentations of Agile out in the wild today, and a lot of them in some pretty visible places. Let's clear these away and start fresh. More importantly, let's start simple, and talk about Agile concepts in ways that your grandmother, your kindergartner or even your boss can understand.

We'll cover some really simple, fun and engaging ways to talk about what this Agile thing is (and what it isn't). We'll talk about some myths and misconceptions that are out there and how to address them when we encounter them. We'll discuss how to talk about Agile concepts (even some complex ones) in the language the leaders of our businesses speak and understand so we can ensure that we're reaching a shared understanding while convincing them that these concepts are vital to success in today's successful industries. Most importantly, we'll have some fun while doing it.

With a little practice, you'll have them begging you to implement more!


Josh Carson

(Technical) Demoes That Don't Suck

One of the key parts of successful agile development is making sure that feedback loops are setup. An extremely common practice is to establish demos to make sure teams can show progress and can guide on where to go next.

Demos, when done poorly, do not help teams improve. They become expensive status updates. They become a means to show untested code disguised as production quality experiences. They become a means to guilt and shame teams stuck with a difficult problem.

Two years ago, I did a presentation called Demos That Don't Suck. I recommended against giving technical demos. Many people are in environments where that is not possible.

This talk will go over what I have learned over the years of giving demos. This talk id for those of you having to get feedback on features like non-functional improvements, technical products like APIs and SDKs, or migration projects where you need to successfully show you did nothing to the customer experience.


Allison Pollard

Transforming, Not Transformations

Slides

As agilists, how are we affected by our relationships with transforming organizations? Organizations treat an agile transformation as a singular event. A budgetary line item, a noun, a one-time metamorphosis from caterpillar to butterfly. The danger is that we expect people to transform in a particular way or on a schedule.

We believe organizations benefit when we transform the way we assist organizations. In this interactive workshop, Allison and Barry will facilitate discussion on experiences with transformations and what might happen within an organization if we more actively transform ourselves.

Join us as we explore who and what is transforming through agile transformations.


Andy Singleton

An architectural approach to web services and continuous delivery

The megatrend move to cloud, Web services, and continuous delivery is impacting every agile team. We will start by seeing how Amazon, Google, Microsoft, and Facebook weave these ingredients into a Matrix of Services that has created more than $3T in market value. Their tactics are quite different from the tactics applied in a Scrum-based agile transformation. They use tech leads instead of scrum masters, product managers and outcome metrics instead of product owners. Each team and service can support a matrix of different products, avoiding the silos of SAFE programs. We’ll look at basic continuous delivery tactics, and see how tools have a bigger impact than teamwork, and how they work better at large scale. We can wrap up the session with testimonials from people who are working in the new model, and have a debate on the role of teamwork in this mechanical system. Everyone should leave the session with some new ideas to try.


Jeff Byron

As a Des Moines Agile conference goer, I want to learn some of the basics so that I can apply them properly in my organization.

Slides

Whether you're just getting started or would like a refresher because things have gotten stale, this session will take it from the top. We will discuss agile as a mindset, tactics to try, and most importantly, the "why?" behind each one. This session will cover the importance of motivation, the framework of a sprint, and why people keep talking about lean manufacturing in Japan. Questions are welcome throughout and we may just see where the conversation takes us.


Tim Ottinger

Always Be Learning and Experimenting

Slides

George Dinwiddie once said that the biggest problem he sees in software teams is that people do not have enough time to learn. Knowledge workers who stop learning produce sub-optimal results and remain unproductive and frustrated. In this hour-long talk, Tim will

  • help people understand the systems of learning-stop
  • see how teams are building learning into their work
  • learn a workable system for focused learning
  • find resources to help teams learn and improve constantly.


Skylar Watson

Outcome Metrics Lead To Valuable Practices

Slides

Whereas output metrics (such as stories completed per week) measure aspects of a team’s localized productivity, outcome metrics (such as how much these features increase customer productivity) measure the difference the teams’ work makes in the world. Focus on output metrics can lead to increased waste and unnecessary stress, and distracts the organization from achieving more valuable outcomes. In this talk, through stories and group exercises, you’ll see how you can better measure and improve your organization’s effectiveness.

Learning Outcomes

  • People can tell an outcome metric from an output metric (sparrow deck participation)
  • Connecting the things that we do to the difference they make in the world (by drawing metric chains and then shortcutting them)
  • People stop stressing about things that don’t make a difference (evidence in stories)

 

 


SCHEDULE


Schedule Room 302/303 Room 304/305 Room 306/307 Room 308/309
8:00 - 9:00 Check-in and Breakfast (Provided)
9:00 - 9:45 Opening - Announcements, Speaker Introductions - Ballroom
9:45 - 10:45

Brandon Carlson

Ballroom
10:45 - 11:00 Break
11:00 - 12:00

Barry Forrest

Gianfranco Berardi

Jeff Byron

Kent McDonald

12:00 - 1:00 Lunch - Ballroom (Provided)
1:00 - 2:00

Tim Ottinger

Josh Carson

Mindy Bohannon

Skylar Watson

2:00 - 2:15 Break
2:15 - 3:15

Allison Pollard

Andy Singleton

Nate Adams

Andy Van Fleet

3:15 - 5:00 Networking, Drinks and Tapas - Ballroom