My account of Scrum Day Europe

An awesome journey discussing Value delivery

Willem-Jan Ageling
Jul 12 · 5 min read

Thursday July 11th I was in Amsterdam to attend Scrum Day Europe, together with my Ingenico colleagues Pieter Verbaarschott and Corine van den Bogaerdt. Scrum Day Europe was organised by Prowareness and Scrum.org and the main theme was “Value Delivery”, a very interesting and important theme in the context of Scrum.

Opening by Dave West, CEO of Scrum.org

Dave West was our host and he opened the event. He stressed the factor of complexity and how this influences teams to deliver value. These are my main takeaways from his opening:

“We don’t live in a deterministic world, we live in a complex world”.

“Scrum helps teams and teams of teams break through complexity to deliver value”.

I hope that he was able to bring this message across to the attendants as there’s still so much misunderstood about Scrum.

Evidence Based Portfolio Management — Patricia Kong

The first keynote speaker was Patricia Kong from Scrum.org. She discussed how many organisations jump on the Agile and Scrum bandwagons and then use the wrong metrics to determine the success of this journey. Metrics like velocity and predictability can give you a wrong picture:

Patricia brought forward four indicators that tell you far more on how you are doing:

  • Unrealised Value
  • Current Value
  • Time to Market
  • Ability to Innovate

Creating a Safe-to-Fail Environment — Linda van Sinten & Robert van Lieshout

The group then split into four as we had the opportunity to join 4 separate sessions. I decided to join the “Safe-to-Fail environment session”. The facilitators used Liberating Structures like Impromptu Networking and 1–2–4-all to discuss the common safety issues and how to tackle them. I found it very interesting to see a snippet of their 4 hour workshop and I hope that these workshops will positively change the lives of many.

The Agile person- The truth behind personality types and agility — Wouter Aghina & Dave West

I then went to a session that discussed personality traits and values to help Agile team members bloom. I was really impressed by this session and added a few activities on my own backlog to work on. I am quite certain that we aren’t actively doing something about this and that needs to change.

Product Owner & Strategy — Roman Pichler

The most valuable hour of the day for me was the talk from Roman Pichler. I wish my product department was there to hear what Roman sees as a product:

“A product is an asset that delivers value to a set of users on its own”.

This reduces the number of products within our company considerably, impacting how we view Product Owners and the vision on a product. Roman also has a clear view on who is responsible for this product vision: the Product Owner:

It reinforces me to continue to bring this message across.

Roman also brought other things forward:

  • Don’t spoon feed the development teams with detailed requirements;
  • Explore new ideas regularly;
  • Have regular collaborative product strategy reviews.

There was plenty for me to take back to the company. And plenty of inspirational stuff to write about.

Sense and respond — Jeff Gothelf

Jeff Gothelf — co-author of “Lean UX” and “Sense and Respond “— had an interesting talk about how technology can bring enormous gains, but how it can also be having unwanted side-effects — even criminal behavior. This is why he brought forward below guidelines:

Conclusion

Scrum Day Europe was well organised. A great job by Prowareness and Scrum.org. The theme was perfect and I learned a lot. I was happy with the reach-ability of the location too. Food and drinks were also perfect. The one issue that I could come up with is that the location itself was somewhat cramped. It would have been nice to have a bit more room to walk around without bumping into someone. Now it was limiting the possibilities to get to know other people.

All in all I had a great day at Scrum Day Europe and it brought me a lot. Now it’s up to me to make use of the shared insights to make our company an even better place.


My twitter profile is https://twitter.com/WJAgeling

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Willem-Jan Ageling

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Interested in ways to work better together. I love the discussion with open-minded people.

Serious Scrum

Content by and for serious scrum practitioners.