Granny's Programming Pearls
"inside of every large program is a small program struggling to get out"
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* Welcome Mary & Tom Poppendieck

 
Jeanne Boyarsky
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This week, we're delighted to have Mary & Tom Poppendieck helping to answer questions about the new book Leading Lean Software Development: Results Are not the Point. See the table of contents online.

The promotion starts Tuesday, December 15th 2009 and will end on Friday, December 18th 2009.

We'll be selecting four random posters in this forum to win a free copy of the book provided by the publisher, Addison-Wesley Professional.

Please see the Book Promotion page to ensure your best chances at winning!

Posts in this welcome thread are not eligible for the drawing.

 
Jeanne Boyarsky
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Welcome to JavaRanch, Mary & Tom Poppendieck
 
Ilja Preuss
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Welcome!
 
Aayush Sinha
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Welcome Mary & Tom ! It's really nice to see some leading speakers on Agile here. My conundrum is as below,

I have been a part of a growing product company who use Agile and TDD; since past year. Having come from a world of SDLC, what I find a tad bit difficult is that there is very little emphasis on analysis and design and an even lesser emphasis on documentation ! Also in an Agile driven environment, it is very difficult to instill the kind of pride and passion in a developer that you get in SDLC, mainly cause (IMHO) you never get the SDLC kind of sense of achievement and appreciation.

In such a scenario when people move on and leave the organization, whats the best way to retain the knowledge that lies in their experience?
And also what's the best way to get the new joiners (to organization and to agile) upto speed.

Thanks!
Cheers!
Aayush
 
Mary Poppendieck
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Hi Aayush,

I would say that if Agile implementations take away passion, then something is wrong. I observe that the idea of a Product Owner (from Scrum) can take away from the team the right to understand their ultimate customer and make wise trade-off decisions. If a team is simply doing what they are told based on a list of priorities organized by someone else, and team members have no visibility to the results of their work, then of course there will not be any passion. People will not bring their dedication and wisdom to work - they will leave it at home. To me, this is not lean and if it's agile, then it's not a form of agile that I'm in favor of.

As far as documentation and retaining learning is concerned, a good lean development environment is focused on learning - learning before acting, learning through feedback, and retaining knowledge. That's a fundamental principle of lean development - and if practices diminish the learning or ability to retain the learning, then something is wrong. The idea is not to abandon all early thinking and planning, the idea is to avoid premature decisions before the best knowledge is acquired. That's the principle. If practices in fact diminish learning, then they are not supporting a healthy lean environment.

I worry about moving from an environment in which too much front-end decision-making discourages future learning, to an environment in which there is no front end learning. Both are wrong. There is a happy medium, and wise leaders will help development teams find the balance.

Mary Poppendieck
 
Joe Harry
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Jeanne Boyarsky wrote:I've reviewed this book and gave it 10/10.


Wow! This book should then be interesting.

Welcome authors.
 
Aayush Sinha
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Mary Poppendieck wrote:Hi Aayush,

I would say that if Agile implementations take away passion, then something is wrong. I observe that the idea of a Product Owner (from Scrum) can take away from the team the right to understand their ultimate customer and make wise trade-off decisions. If a team is simply doing what they are told based on a list of priorities organized by someone else, and team members have no visibility to the results of their work, then of course there will not be any passion. People will not bring their dedication and wisdom to work - they will leave it at home. To me, this is not lean and if it's agile, then it's not a form of agile that I'm in favor of.

As far as documentation and retaining learning is concerned, a good lean development environment is focused on learning - learning before acting, learning through feedback, and retaining knowledge. That's a fundamental principle of lean development - and if practices diminish the learning or ability to retain the learning, then something is wrong. The idea is not to abandon all early thinking and planning, the idea is to avoid premature decisions before the best knowledge is acquired. That's the principle. If practices in fact diminish learning, then they are not supporting a healthy lean environment.

I worry about moving from an environment in which too much front-end decision-making discourages future learning, to an environment in which there is no front end learning. Both are wrong. There is a happy medium, and wise leaders will help development teams find the balance.

Mary Poppendieck




Thanks Mary, for the detailed reply. I do agree with your views and appreciate the insights. Also firmly agree that an organization should try and adopt the "happy medium" that you describe in your answer rather than being completely austere about one particular paradigm.

Thanks again for the answer. Look forward to reading more of the book in detail.
 
Mohamed El-Refaey
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Welcome Mary & Tom! ... it is really beneficial to collaborate with you on such interesting topic.
 
Henry Wong
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Welcome Mary and Tom. Enjoy your time here on the ranch.


Jeanne, I turned on the sticky flag on this topic.

Henry
 
Jeanne Boyarsky
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Henry Wong wrote:Jeanne, I turned on the sticky flag on this topic.

Thanks Henry!
 
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