Anti FrAgile Day Chicago
After five years, Agile Day Chicago is still growing and improving. This year we again lean toward an AntiFrAgile Theme. We’ve gathered international and national speakers to speak on complexity, product thinking, responsive engineering and more.
The morning sessions will once again spark lively open space discussions in the afternoon. New this year, we have dedicated a track to community sessions where you can speak! We are also proud to announce that all profits this year will go to help Leonardo’s Basement, a maker’s space for children ( https://leonardosbasement.org/ )
Link to ‘Slides’ from Keynote
Founder and chief scientific officer of Cognitive Edge. His work is international in nature and covers government and industry looking at complex issues relating to strategy, organisational decision making and decision making. He has pioneered a science based approach to organisations drawing on anthropology, neuroscience and complex adaptive systems theory. He is a popular and passionate keynote speaker on a range of subjects, and is well known for his pragmatic cynicism and iconoclastic style.Designing systems that are able to survive radical change and inherent uncertainty requires a deep understanding of context and the ‘evolutionary potential’ of the present. Focusing on future goals and idealized descriptions of human behavior increases vulnerability to the unexpected. This presentation will look at narrative and constraint mapping, in the context of the Cynefin framework, to determine the energy gradient of change and the legitimate time horizon for planning. It will look at the theory of coherence in the context of decision making as a means to hold options open as long as possible, avoiding premature commitment with associated vulnerability. Emerging worl on unarticulated need mapping, pre-Scrum techniques in Agile and ecology based architectures will be explored.
Link to Slides
Shannon Lietz is an award winning innovator with over two decades of experience pursuing advanced security defenses and next generation security solutions. Ms. Lietz is currently the DevSecOps Leader for Intuit where she is responsible for setting and driving the company’s cloud security strategy, roadmap and implementation in support of corporate innovation. She operates a 24×7 DevSecOps team that includes Red and Blue Team operations. Previous to joining Intuit, Ms. Lietz worked for ServiceNow where she was responsible for the cloud security engineering efforts.Security has mostly operated towards the right of implementation just prior to deployment. With the introduction of Continuous Delivery, security must shift left and new processes, tools and skills must be formed. From risk acceptance back to architectural decisions, everything security must be re-imagined in order to realize the vision of safer software sooner. Whether you practice DevOps or have been in the business or protecting workloads, this change is both exciting and somewhat mystifying. To further this global change, we’ve enlisted the help of heroes like you to highlight the path forward. Come join us to hear about the journey and enjoy some humorous tails.
Link to Slides
Anne is a product geek, coach, and influencer who guides companies in introducing respectful change. She leads teams in incorporating agile practices that improve quality and customer satisfaction while not adding superfluous process. In her role at DevJam, she helps teams discover, define, and build products in a better way, specializing in leading teams through the process of taking an abstract vision and breaking it down into something that is understood, actionable, and incrementally adds value.The boss told you to “just write all the stories,” but you have little to start with beyond a vague idea or a bullet point on a slide. How do you get to those brilliant, right-sized stories that can be handed off to your developers? Illustrated via a real-life example, Anne Steiner demonstrates concrete steps for filling the gaps between idea and stories. In the end, you’ll have your stories but more importantly, you’ll also have a discovery conversation that leads to deeper product understanding.
Jeff Patton helps companies adopt a way of working that’s focused on building great products, not just building stuff faster. Jeff blends a mixture of Agile thinking, Lean and Lean Startup Thinking, and UX Design and Design Thinking to end up with a holistic product-centric way of working. Jeff is author of the bestselling O’Reilly book User Story Mapping which describes a simple holistic approach to using stories in Agile development without losing sight of the big picture. You can learn more about Jeff at: jpattonassociates.com.
In this short talk, Jeff Patton will describe how product-centric agile teams have started to rethink what velocity really means. They’ve separated development velocity from learning velocity. They’ve started to expose specifically what they’ve learned from every experiment or release to make the rate they’re learning visible. And, as a consequence, learning that lots of effort doesn’t always mean lots of learning.
Come to this session to understand this important view on what velocity means for product-centric teams.
David has spent the last 15 years producing products for companies of all sizes around the world. David’s coaching is non-dogmatic and pragmatic. He learns about product communities to seed self-discovery and avoid simply telling people what they “should do”. David spends most of his time helping teams validate product ideas by blending product discovery with responsive engineering. He also works with leadership to pragmatically introduce lasting agility that fosters innovation and a competitive edge.With more companies looking to adopt a product approach (or mindset), it’s time to start talking about how to do this beyond the fun, safe land of the well-funded start up. This talk will lay out a path of learning for various types of organizations looking to move from measuring work completed to embracing impact in the market or in house. We will look at several models, starting with the simpler case of one team and one product and building up to the more complex cases of one product and many teams, or one system and many teams. We discuss concrete tools for product discovery that happens in production as well as “outside the code” or upstream from a product delivery cadence. There will be plenty to grok, so please so up ready to learn and ready to question.
Link to Slides
Mark Graban is an internationally-recognized consultant, author, keynote speaker, and blogger in the field of “Lean healthcare.” Mark is also the Vice President of Improvement & Innovation Services for the software company. Mark’s motivation is to apply Lean and Toyota Production System principles to improve quality of care and patient safety, to improve the customer/patient experience, to help the development of medical professionals and employees, and to help build strong organizations for the long term.In Eric Ries's book, The Lean Startup, he cites and mentions W. Edwards Deming, the
American statistician and management guru who was deeply influential to Toyota and other
companies around the world.
One of Dr. Deming's key lessons was the need to understand variation when looking at
performance measures and evaluating individuals. How do we separate signal from noise in our
view of performance? How can we avoid overreacting to every up and down in our results? How
can we stop wasting time searching for root causes and special explanations for the effect of
"common cause variation" in a system?
Deming’s famed "Red Bead Experiment" is a hands-on way to understand these principles in
fun and practical ways. During this breakout session, you’ll have the chance to participate in this
exercise, to learn from observing and reflecting upon some of the silly things executives and
managers do in their attempts to cajole better performance out of a bad system.
In keeping with the theme of the day, this session focuses on not using overly simplistic
methods for tracking and reacting to performance measures, but not so much that it requires
"complexity" in methods. There are simple, yet effective ways to track and respond to
measures in ways that are valid and lead to better management decisions over time.
As a founder of nuAgility LLC, Ray Arell is one of the company’s principal consultants and coaches. His 30+ year career has been dedicated to building great teams, communities, and products. Through his leadership, he has directly built and transformed a number of successful worldwide organizations and over the past 5 years has been coaching other leaders to do the same with their own teams. He is recognized as an industry leader in large scale adoptions of Agile, lean, and complex systems, and he has delivered over 20 keynotes and talks sharing his knowledge across the globe.Innovation programs within companies has fallen trap to a chronic misuse of the word, to the point most programs are shoehorned into traditional project management frameworks that focus more on the word than addressing the need—enabling the inventor, intrapreneur, and entrepreneur.
In this talk, Ray Arell will talk about how to create the right environments and methods that allow true innovation to thrive; this will include an overview of complexity-informed methods like Solutions Thinking, establishing networks of innovators via communities of practice, innovation hubs, and other key methods/tools that can help accelerating your time to value.
Link to Slides
Joel is a software developer and agile coach, trying to help people, teams, and organizations create products that solve real problems in clean ways.How do you embrace cloud and microservices and not risk getting into different failure scenarios or overly complicated maintenance and ripple effects? In this session we will walk through visualizations that help teams blend product thinking with architecture. Along the way, we will look at microservices and domain modeling as well as chaos engineering and fault tolerance – blending all of these into a context that is consumable by all and gives the right emphasis at the right time. Leave this session with simple visualizations and approaches that you can apply immediately to start blending product with architecture, especially if you are looking to run in a cloud world.
Chris Powers has been developing software products for the last twelve years, and he loves sharing his passion for building both software and teams with audiences nationwide. As a Clean Coders author, Chris is producing an educational video series entitled “Clean Code in the Browser”. Chris is a Director of Engineering at Sprout Social and lives in the northern Chicago suburbs with his wife and two children. In his free time he enjoys drumming and tabletop gaming.Complex City offers the biggest challenges of our day just within its walls. Business, product innovation, education, government — huge sprawling problem domains where the old maps and compasses get us nowhere. Exploration is no longer the preparation for the work; exploration IS the work! Collaboration and experimentation become our footholds when our worlds move from complicated to complex.
We will discuss how collaboration is the lifeblood of your business, yet it is only made possible in a culture of shared understanding and values. We will dive into organizational agility and the practical steps product teams take to stay unstuck. Finally, we will focus on the experimental mindset as a navigational tool to chart a path through the heart of Complex City.
David Julia & Simon Duffy
Link to Slides
David Julia is a long-time Pivotal Labs consultant with experience writing, deploying, and supporting production systems in Ruby, Golang and Java for startups, fortune 100 companies, and everything in between leveraging lean product and extreme programming.
He’s currently focused on helping large enterprises transform their internal development teams to adopt modern agile development, agile software architecture, and a culture of continuous improvement.
Simon is a Staff Product Manager at Pivotal Labs Chicago. He has been involved in high profile agile software development initiatives across healthcare, insurance, telecom, and consumer products. Simon’s key focus is on applying data-driven lean product management within the enterprise.The scene: A complex procedure cost estimation system with thousands of unknown business rules hidden in a monolithic application. A rewrite is started. If our system gives an incorrect result, the company is financially on the hook. A QA team demanding month-long feature freezes for testing. A looming deadline to cut over to the new system with severe financial penalties for missing the date. Tension is high. The business is nervous, and the team isn’t confident that it can replace the system without introducing costly bugs. Does that powder-keg of a project sound familiar?
Enter Project X: At a pivotal moment in the project, the team changed their approach. They’d implement a unique, data-driven variation of the strangler pattern. They’d run their system in production alongside the legacy system, while collecting data on their system’s accuracy, falling back to the legacy system when answers differed. True to Lean Software Development, they would amplify learning and use data to drive their product decisions.
The end result: An outstanding success. Happy stakeholders, business buy-in to release at will, a vastly reduced QA budget, reusable microservices, and one heck of a continuous delivery pipeline. We achieved all of this, while providing a system that was provably better than the legacy subsystem we replaced.
This talk will appeal to engineers, managers, and product managers.
Join us for a 45 minute session where we review this case study and learn how you too can:
Build statistically significant confidence in your system with data-driven testing
Strangle the Monolith safely
Take a Lean approach to legacy rewrites
Validate your system’s accuracy when you don’t know the legacy business rules
Leverage Continuous Delivery in a Legacy Environment
Get Business and QA buy-in for Continuous Delivery
Articulate the business value of data-driven product decisions
This year we’ve dedicated a track to you. Use the button to send us a title and a short description for your talk. For submitting you will get a 25 % discount code. Conference attendees will vote on the sessions they want to hear.Submit a Session to the Community Track
No prior speaking experience necessary. We will help you shape your topic. Sessions in this track will be 20 minutes with a total of 6 sessions. Any session not chosen will go right into our open space.
Interactive sessions and intelligent speakers
Telling stories and sharing experiences
Code of Conduct
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