You are a leader. Yes, you!

A couple of years ago I was attending the course “Secrets of Agile Teamwork – Beyond Technical Skills” by Esther Derby and Diana Larsen. It was a brilliant course, and so far, I have had more use of it than any other course I have attended or book I have read. In the special Esther-and-Diana-style (you must try it if you get the chance), we learned about communication, conflict, feedback, change and leadership. We also learned a lot about ourselves from reflecting over how we behaved in different situations. Highly recommended!

One section in the course was “Team Leadership Activities” and that would prove a real eye-opener to me. It is a great tool to view a team through, to understand what makes a team move forward towards their goal and how you can contribute.

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You get what you measure

Yesterday I watched Grand Designs on TV where a couple restored an old 1600-century house. They found that at least one window was shut with bricks and concrete (or the equivalent used at that time), but when they opened it up the whole room changed and the light and the view the window provided was beautiful.

The reason for shutting the window, as Kevin McCloud told, was that long ago there was a window-tax (!!) in England, hence a lot of windows where shut this way.

You get what you measure.

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Two steps to become agile

A lot of companies today wants to become “agile”. The $100.000.000 question is: How do you become agile?

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Are you proud of what you do? Do you let others be?

Sometimes I get very proud of what I accomplish, at work or otherwise. This is a very rewarding feeling that last for years when looking back.

So I asked myself when am I proud of what I’ve done? What are the circumstances?

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Where is software quality going?

Yesterday I was visiting Scania when their R&D department had a family-day where they demonstrated what they are working with. Scania, for those of you who don’t know, is famous for making high quality trucks and buses. What struck me when we went from room to room and hall to hall was that wherever we went, there was an automated testing rig!

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“Manual processes are risks”

The other day I heard a person on my project say “Manual processes are risks”. Generally, if you do something that has a risk, you want to have a chance to gain something from taking the risk.

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Energized work

One of the members on my team is having his son acclimatizing at daycare, and he was amazed with how the kids were playing around together, climbing and crawling, and how they we’re constantly experiencing, thinking and learning. He said “They seem to have so much fun and learn so much, why don’t we do that as adults?”.

Yeah, why don’t we?

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Refactoring organizations – refactoring code

Today I was struck by the similarities between rewriting code (as opposed to refactoring it) and how many companies reorganize.

When I was a young programmer and the code I had written was a mess I thought that if I just got the chance to rewrite everything it would then work better. Out with the old, and start on a blank sheet.

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