Agile Day Chicago

More Information Coming Soon…

Agenda (More to be announced)
8:00 Registration
8:30 Opening Discussion:
9:30 Morning Schedule Session:
12:15 Lunch
1:00 Afternoon Open Space:
4:30 Conference Closing and Reception

Eventbrite - Anti-FrAgile Day Chicago 2016

Last Year’s Speakers

  • Mary Poppendieck

    Platforms Beat Products – Almost Every Time

    Platforms work differently than products. If you become a platform provider, your offerings are not products and your economic focus is not profits. Instead, your success depends upon your ability to influence the actions of third parties. Therefore, you concentrate on massive scale, deep learning, and reliable transactions. And even if you do everything right, you need a lot of luck to succeed.
    This talk is about the pitfalls and the rewards of hosting a platform.
    Download slides here

  • David Hussman

    Product Agility 0.1.0

    DevJam is cutting over to a new way of thinking and working that is rooted in the success of the past but focused on the future. Product Agility is a collection of ideas and ideals meant to help one or more team embrace continuous learning through a blend of discovery and delivery practices. This talk will explain the organization of Product Agility and help audience members contemplate what it might mean to pragmatically apply Product Agility ideas when they return to their gig.
    Download slides here

  • Kolton Andrus

    Breaking Things on Purpose

    Failure Testing prepares us, both socially and technically for how our systems will behave in the face of failure. By proactively testing, we can find and fix problems before they become crises. Practice makes perfect, yet a real calamity is not a good time for training.
    At Netflix and Amaxon, we ran failure exercises on a regular basis to ensure we were prepared. These experiments helped us find problems and saved us from future incidents. Come and learn how to run an effective ‘Game Day’ and safely test in production. Then sleep peacefully knowing you are ready!
    Download slides here

  • Chris Powers

    Grabbing “High-Hanging Fruit” with Experimentation

    Rapid feedback and measuring results are core tenets of agile and lean methodologies, and product experimentation techniques provide the necessary tools. Products like Optimizely boast big quick wins for their customers thanks to seemingly trivial optimizations, and bloggers praise A/B experimentation for miraculous product lifts. But how long can these quick wins last? What new challenges arise for a product after 1, 2, 3 years of experimentation, when the only wins left are “high-hanging fruit”?
    Download slides here

  • Esra Kucukciftci

    You Simply Can’t Agile Your Way Into Monetization: from MVPs to MVBs

    While agile can get you to minimally viable product and beyond very effectively, you simply can’t iterate your way into profitability and monetization. In this session we dive deeper into why, and suggest a new and analytical approach to “profitable” product development.
    Download slides here

  • Bridget Kromhout

    Distributed: Of Systems and Teams

    We endeavor to build consistency, availability, and fault tolerance into our distributed systems, but how do we build them into our teams. The human factors in devops require as much attention as do our technical implementations.
    Collaboration, understanding, trust: we know how important these interactions are in devops practice but what about a distributed team?
    Drawing in comparisons from theoretical computer science and practical systems implementation, I’ll explore how building understanding requires a practical application of great tools in a deliberate pursuit of a constructive culture.
    Download slides here

  • Jane Cleland-Huang

    Agile Goes Critical

    Today’s software systems are increasingly likely to be embedded in, or to interact with, physical devices. Many of them are `safety-critical’ – which means that runtime failures may cause people physical harm. Software controlling the routing of a drone might allow it to accidentally crash into a busy highway causing an accident, or an electronic health care system might accidentally record incorrect prescription information resulting in a fatal overdose. In this interactive session, Jane Cleland-Huang will present agile techniques which can be used to focus on safety from beginning to end of a project.
    Download slides here

  • Anne Steiner

    Building the Wrong Thing Faster: Two Delivery Successess That Led to Product Failure

    Anne shares the story of two product development efforts that were wildly successful in terms of delivery but were misses in the market. She will discuss the ups and downs of each and how delivery remained king after market challenges were revealed. You will learn to avoid this by putting learning ahead of (or at least equal to) delivery.
    Download slides here

  • Dion Stewart

    Lessons from the Dojo

    Even when an organization understands the value of adopting product thinking and responsive engineering practices it can be difficult to increase those skills on their teams in a way that sticks over time. Joel Tosi and Dion Stewart say teams learn better in the immersive eco-system of Dojos than they do using traditional forms of training. They explain why and how Dojos help teams bond around product, foster rapid experimentation, and reframe small failures as learning.
    Hear how Joel and Dion have been coaching teams in a Dojo. You’ll learn what a Dojo is, how a Dojo can benefit you, and steps to setting up a Dojo.
    Download slides here

  • Bill Allen

    Product Remedies Using the Product Discovery Canvas

    Product Discovery, the search for a product your customers want, love, and will acquire, is hard. And learning Product Discovery is probably just as hard. So let’s start simple, by first remedying some common product ailments as a mean towards Product Discovery. In this session, Bill introduces a single page ideation tool, the Product Discovery Canvas, which applies relevant aspects of Collaborative Chartering, Customer Discovery, Story Mapping, Pretotyping, and Lean Startup to remedy challenges of product discovery and delivery.
    Download slides here

  • Jason Stipp

    Shift from Doing Agile to Thinking / Being Agile

    Stand-ups, showcase, squads, and retros: The ceremonies and other components of agile are relatively easy to understand and even execute, but are you just going through the motions?
    Hear about one Morningstar squad’s journey from simply following the protocols of agile to actually living the principles, the visible impact the transformation is having on the team, and how we’re measuring our progress.
    Download slides here

  • Rick Bowman

    Collaboration Across Distributed Teams

    Today’s distributed Agile teams are designed to be highly focused on delivering business value, but when companies scale, how do they continue to enable sharing and avoid duplication? InnerSource is a practice in many technology companies (the term was coined by PayPal) that allow teams to share in much the way companies around the world share and leverage public open source libraries and frameworks. InnerSource can enable increased delivery velocity, smoother collaboration between groups, spontaneous innovation, and higher-quality development.
    Download slides here


There will be three, antifr-agile session types, all on experience and practice over theory and conjecture.

  • Experiential Sessions

    Practitioners sharing ideas and experiences around the successful and continuous use of lean and agile ideas.

  • Advancing Sessions

    Deep practitioners sharing ideas and practices that augment or extend basic practices or principles.

  • Evolutionary Sessions

    Brave explorers present and discuss tools and techniques that are on the horizon, in the ‘what’s next’ category.



Code of Conduct

All attendees, speakers, sponsors, and volunteers at our conference are required to agree with and follow the code of conduct.

Agile Day Chicago is dedicated to providing a harassment-free conference experience for everyone, regardless of gender identity, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, religion. or lack thereof. We invite all those who participate in Agile Day Chicago to help us create safe and positive experiences for everyone. We do not tolerate harassment of conference participants in any form. Sexual language and imagery is not appropriate for any conference venue.

Harassment includes offensive verbal comments including jokes and language, sexual images in public spaces, deliberate intimidation, stalking, following, harassing photography or recording, sustained disruption of talks or other events, inappropriate physical contact, and unwelcome sexual attention. Participants asked to stop any harassing behavior are expected to comply immediately.

No weapons will be allowed Agile Day Chicago events, community spaces, or in other spaces covered by the scope of this Code of Conduct. Weapons include but are not limited to guns, explosives (including fireworks), and large knives such as those used for hunting or display, as well as any other item used for the purpose of causing injury or harm to others. Anyone seen in possession of one of these items will be asked to leave immediately, and will only be allowed to return without the weapon.

If a participant engages in harassing behavior, the conference organizers may take any action they deem appropriate, including warning the offender or expulsion from the conference with no refund. If you are being harassed, notice that someone else is being harassed, or have any other concerns, please contact a member of conference staff immediately. Conference staff will be happy to help participants contact venue security or local law enforcement, provide escorts, or otherwise assist those experiencing harassment to feel safe for the duration of the conference. We value your attendance.

We expect participants to follow these rules at all conference venues and conference-related social events.
If an incident occurs please use the following contact information.
Conference organizers:, 708.407.4082
Chicago Police Department: 312-746-6000
Chicago Sexual Assault Center 24-Hour Crisis Hotline: 1-888-293-2080

Harassment policy adapted from information at the Geek Feminism wiki, Citizen Code of Conduct, and StrangeLoop.