7/4 time and the Scrum Team – SCRAMMING!

Band practice last night. We hadn’t played together in a few weeks because I was on the road. I sat down behind the drums and grabbed my sticks and counted off and we were into “Times Like These” by the Foo Fighters. This is a great tune that starts out in 7/4 time, and has a bridge in 7/4 time. I love odd time signatures. What makes odd time cool is the need for all band members to be aware. Even time signatures, like 4/4, are more “natural”, like muscle memory. We can feel them without thinking because we have always been exposed to even-time signatured music. The first few times you play in 7/4, it feels weird. It is mechanical, clunky, and not very musical. Once you get a feel for it, it starts to flow, and develops a groove all its own.

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Action and learning, valued above all

I love this quote from Fujio Cho, President of the the Toyota Motor Corporation, 2002.

We place the highest value on actual implementation and taking action. There are many things one doesn’t understand and therefore, we ask them why don’t you just go ahead and take action; try to do something? You realize how little you know and you face your own failures and you simply can correct those failures and redo it again and at the second trial you realize another mistake or another thing you didn’t like so you can redo it once again. So by constant improvement, or, should I say, the improvement based upon action, one can rise to the higher level of practice and knowledge.

Great Books on Culture, Agile, LEAN and Organizational Transformation

Over the past years I have collected some excellent books on Organizational Change, Culture, LEAN and Agile. Here is some of my reading list. It’s by no means exhaustive, but a good start. I’ll be adding more books soon.  Click on each list item for more information.

Deep learning and application of knowledge is the only way to truly transform yourself and your organization.


Organizational Change and Business Culture:


Organizational Transformation User Stories

A big struggle, especially with managers, is writing User Stories on internal change and improvement to arrive at the point where we can define clear acceptance criteria, and actually get something DONE-DONE. We managers tend to think more broadly and in abstract terms. Useful and necessary, but certainly not sufficient. One approach that works to get from abstract to “rubber meets the road” is to iterate on the abstract ideas and break down the epic change Stories into smaller, more concrete ones and use the acceptance and INVEST criteria as the litmus test to know if you have something that can be implemented and measured.

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