Battlefield Agilty: Think Beyond Scrum

Madhur Kathuria

Recorded at GOTO 2015


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good evening and let's say good
afternoon good morning also I know you
guys have been there since morning and
somehow still waking up summer still
okay when do I go to bed I'll be like
that good okay Christian at the back and
we also like that good so when just bet
October this session and I came to the
classroom and us listening to work in
session earlier so thanks again for a
wonderful session but it was kind of
scared because lot of things that are
talking about where exactly in the
director cutter that we are talking
about so I am sure you're going to be
getting very bored as we go along so
please be prepared okay oh but let's
start this session because those right
screams I am my teams are not working
fine so let's change them so before we
go there just have a little introduction
and I am going to talk about something
very scary in this land of Vikings okay
any at least for some what I'm going to
ask each one of you is about your age so
how scary is that don't worry about your
actual age but your scrimmage okay so
most of us can be alert sis come because
it k probably in 1997 few years back 20s
five so how many pairs from teenagers
here who have been using scum for more
than 12 years oh that's good and someone
who has been between nine to twelve
years still early deems good and
toddlers yes who have been two years to
anywhere between eight years Oh almost
every one of us good and who are still
unborn since come
who are not yet one with stuff oh good
we are still good thank you very much
for being here good so what we are going
to be talking about something which
scrum does not give us so there is
something that I am going to be talking
about but before we go there a little
bit of introduction yes as I can also
said and you have been saying my session
is already there of the last one so
please don't be skimpy to the
realization I am a certified scrum
trainer and a certified scrum coach with
scrum alliance and I have been
connecting a few trainings learning with
the few folks like you back in India and
other parts of the world so I would also
like to learn from you as we go along so
we are going to keep this session more
talking and more questioning are you
ready for that yes at the back also any
area good good but being an Indian first
of all please excuse my asset because
I'm used to running our different
countries so if you don't understand
anything please feel free to talk back
and ask you later but as we go along let
me ask any question all of us us come
toddlers so prior to the you strum let
us talk about some basics first few
things someone at this star is in here
YW scrum anyone in this room
I can
toolroom yes that's better improve
profitability after all the way
to get a product out the door most
efficiently wonderful Alan more fun
that's good Christian I can see you yes
consume okay yes I don't get any worse
come is going to do what okay yes hunter
at xchange and had to change wonderful
so I think there are few reasons why we
have in talking oh that's exactly what
you get said responding to change
getting the product howdy roll faster
until they are a deal my doubts about
having fun right maximizing the business
value so this is what we have been
talking about but the scrum apply in
every situation for every project that
you run for every program that you run
does come apply no I can see if your
nose and what would be the reasons why
you little hates come in such situations
yes now let's talk about that and three
it doesn't give the predictability okay
maybe more this thing is maybe the
iterations don't make sense perfect yes
more times go ahead yeah yeah we don't
have team tasks yes absolutely possible
yeah anything that you dr. yan watchin
speak up otherwise they are not going to
say it's come is not working yes ok that
sauce yes absolutely so I just put few
of the things here because in every
situation when we talk about scrum if
your backlog is maybe not fixed you are
continuously moving you are continuously
working we are continuously changing
directions talk about the thought of art
and changing directions when you're back
love this table scrum works fine but
then if your iterations are smaller if
your work units are smaller it may
actually not work am i right yes and
even struggle with those also if your
team is this rivet right because I to
see yourself or maybe an embryo of here
from IBM here now when the teams are
distributed what happens to our
ceremonies daily stand-up sprint
planning do the work fine as they should
be in a pool located him no I can see if
you knows that's good so what are you
going to be doing about it can we change
something now i'm going to say change
scrum but be able to do something about
it but just for told me that we have
been here since morning almost 830am
everyone came in and you have been
listening to some very wonderful experts
here and all the experts all these
speakers have been working very hard to
present their sessions and
am i right his under time that all of
you also did some work I know you have
been sitting from there you are not
working in office so what I'm going to
do and ask everyone is to assemble into
groups of about 20 each there to get up
on receives obviously I care from India
so whether you guys famous in yoga means
standing up we can all sit it down and
learning so to stand up for MOOCs
appendage quickly Ethan cooks up and
each let's see lovey yes and the
training
you wouldn't
okay now scum seriously need a scrum
master so we also need a scrum master
within each team scrum master
facilitator and so on so do we have a
volunteer so are there any post for in
tears yes so we have volunteers in each
team a team of volunteers decide to you
mr. master yes does everybody you miss
come master Vicky raise your hand yes we
have one here we have to I don't see
many handful teabag all facilitators
commercial is your hand yes that's good
good good good I can see however now so
now i am going to give each team five
tasks that they need to complete fine
and i am just feeling it asks but a few
things that i want to talk about those
tasks first all these tasks are going to
run in parallel so you're going to work
out your way on how do you go all those
five tasks in two hours not in 20 verse
you on state will do or say right am i
right okay so we'll reduce the duration
all those five tasks need to be
completed within two minutes however is
that now okay much better be captured
and obviously keeping the team in zone
keeping the team working with them is
going to be all scrum master facilitator
so they are going to be working along
with him and strategizing Saudi ready I
don't hear it at the back are we ready
yeah that's good i did it down so here
are your tasks and i want to go to the
timer right now when we get started just
go through it quickly
so these are your five dollars and I'm
going to put on the time you know are we
ready
anything
man
see today's news
guys you're not going to collect the
money from your team members for four
other teams okay all these thousands of
much time we have
how much time you have to be nice yes
okay I on the social shock therapy so
let's get back let's get back case are
we together yes the total time that you
have is three minutes one minute for
brainstorming how you are going to
perform all those five tasks together
that I am going to show you just now and
then two minutes for actually doing
action that means you will have to work
parallel here to work on different tasks
parallely all these tasks de you're
getting a coin together it's not going
to be with your team you have to go to
other teams and collect those facts as
the case might be okay so shall we
restart again counting steps is again
going to be with the team so scrum
master will have them right this is
self-organized task so shall we start
y
you're the one minute is over 20 minutes
tried to call
hi
last one when a
yes
for me
so
last 30 second you have to make it
okay let's stop we have two minutes to
take your seats at the back please okay
don't worry so did we complete all the
tasks this team okay what about the team
seventy-five percent complete what about
the street here will this come a sturdy
it is from Australia right yes how much
will be complete seventy-five percent
the steam divorce what about the steam
all tasks 50 okay okay what about the
scene here seventy-five percent ok so
now as they don't take one last chance
so because we are going to follow the
improvement cutter that I can talk about
so they little bit rate to improvement
we did fifty to seventy-five percent
right and much to the target hundred
percent I'm going to give each team five
minutes to think over how they can reach
that one hundred percent okay how would
you split up how do you work on those
stars so that we actually achieve a good
person i'm going to give you 45 minutes
to think strategize and then at five
minutes we are going to get started I
will ready okay get started finest to
but
Oh
each do say ready when you are ready to
rock at all and you already done with
your brainstorming loose already yes
each group in the team has to complete
all this each team of 20 people has
become a doctor they will be sleeping
facility and to be extra money to just
have to pick it up you're going to work
on good faith son Alaska Mass together
not released any clarifications we have
nobody to get if you are yourself
exercise all this whole night how do we
get captured I go last one minute for
your brainstorming last one minute for
we have their brother from
runs two people with the hands up Luca
James five minutes are over are you
ready please raise your hands if you
please are you ready last team on the
side on my left are you ready yes good
we are ready so I want to put all the
time and now and it would be three
minutes gets it start so anyone that has
a walk there Drona going please raise
your hand
let's go
it is
when you can
last one minute that's one minute
you now take your seats take your seats
take a seat steak is it thick UC
I will be together yes so
congratulations we have already covered
ninety percent of the session and we
just need to cover the 10 percentage of
fury but when we go about it when we
went about these little tasks how did we
really do how did you work as a team and
somebody give me the strategy and leak
out the strategy so what did we really
do yes p we let me saw that the sort of
the amount of tasks and the time logs
didn't we do things together also kind
of very large t arts organizing okay we
start out as cleaning up into you and
then back into two is not so ended up
with four teams and four chances okay
did other teams also do this way yes
okay I know no at the back what did we
do that there okay the color other teams
because sometimes the going gets tough
so you have to talk to other teams and
see how we work together good okay good
so these are the precise reasons or
learnings what battlefield agility gives
you so let me now come at a ten percent
theory part and quickly take you through
what battlefield rigidity brings to you
now because in a lot of cases grum
doesn't work that's why I and few of my
colleagues couple of years back we
started thinking about can we do
something different and that's why I
better if Eli agility came into being
but it picked up from a few concepts
which are already been there so let's
come of those concerns which have
already been there so first let's focus
on the values but we're driving
battlefield I did't II now while you are
doing this task will the timeline no
short was there a focus for all the
teams we have to deliver yes because
whether you use agile philosophy whether
you scrum save the SDM what's the only
way to know that you are doing right
succeed am i right because if you are
not doing it right successes elusive
successes far away but when you do the
things start doing it right then success
is guaranteed but does that happen in in
the first go all the time when you run
your first friend is it always
successful all the time do deliver all
these stories all the requirements so
then what do we do we iterate we improve
we retrospect and that's what were the
driving principles of metal fiend
agility also so focusing on the team
spirit focusing on a sense of urgency we
had lesser time here right so you're
focused on that we have to deliver
within those two to three minutes that
each team had did we do that yes good
now as I said there are few drivers of
battlefield rigidity first comes from
obviously Defense Forces do not ask you
know that ladies doing there in between
but it comes from the Defense Forces it
we obviously talk about the agile
concept we talk about something called
at kaizen what is Tyson when we were
talking about dota right comes from that
same land only right continuous
improvement that's what we are doing
when we did multiple iterations multiple
ways of thinking so that says a clear
what we're doing so and the other part
probably how many for the note fish
philosophy did anybody read about fish
philosopher okay yes so we have my one
of my friends there so fish philosophy
is based on a bunch of fishmongers from
Seattle Washington and how do how do
they change the way they work and now
Pike Place Fish on which fish philosophy
is based that is one of the most visited
landmarks initiative so please go
through the video sometimes
to go through that and they focus on
four key things what is the first one
but we just just now dead clay have fun
and then being there for each other
helping each other so that's family what
they are focused on now why did I bring
in defense forces there because
typically when it comes to discipline
how do we associate defense forces will
come on in control very anti aging and
that's where I exactly disagree defense
forces whether it's the military or the
army or the Air Force they are one of
the most agile organizations or agile
teams why do I say that why they are one
of the most agile teams when we talk
about agile philosophy what are the four
principles we talked about first one
individuals and interactions people
Macklemore over processes and tools to
be all agree now when an army team goes
to a battlefield what is the primary
target they have to bed and for them the
their colleagues injury if somebody is
injured if somebody is also into danger
will they also help them out apart from
running yes so people matter moreover
processes collaboration which is
continuous customer collaboration over
contract negotiation so we have to win
sometimes for this you have to combine
with other teams also so that we will
get it did we just do that when you
command the team what they were saying
we have to win that means we'll combine
collaborate with other teams also what
was the only driver succeed and it will
respond to change yes your defense
forces also respond to change that's a
plan I didn't work do they go to plan B
quickly yes they do all the time and
that's why I said we can take some
lessons from there so now let's talk
about a few lessons from what we can
take lean obviously his picture I take
forward from there so lean kaizen are
the two driving
saw the underlying factors which are
also driving but will feel dejected
focusing on just in time documentation
eliminating waste at every step and then
as we were talking about the car apart
sterilizing G working so that it becomes
a massive practice it becomes a practice
for us how do we do that so there are
some rules that we set up for
battlefield agility which I want to talk
about let's go there now this is the
first war map or the first introduction
that I want to talk about battlefield
legit now battlefield agility focuses on
certain features that you want to
deliver or certain posts that you need
to be in certain targets that you need
have is it something that we need to
close that we need to complete in our
backlogs yes or no so that's a battle
that we need to win every day sometimes
in battle with the testing sometimes a
battle with the code sometimes the
I classified them as features on a map
that we need to win now to win this that
team is going to collaborate together so
like in the Defense Forces we have the
platoon here you just did a little
exercise did we have a commander did we
have a facilitator who was actually
leading the team members in deciding
what we need to do how do we need to
split up yes and that's what we call in
battlefield rigidity as the project
commander now project commander is the
one who is responsible for the goal
setting or how the troops are going to
go how do i need to collaborate with
other teams as the case might be what
are the targets setting up the vision
for the team so that's what we call them
project Commandant's now before any
battle starts every army unit every
difference in itself something what is a
vaca team what are they supposed to do
what does the decade him do in an army
in our defense force they go ahead of
the main army units they check out the
landscape they check out of the only
strength and see and report back what
kind of strategy
something similar happen in our projects
do we all thought that racket even every
project what do we call them architects
analyst those are all rocket team were
going forward maybe expanding the
problem looking at how this looks like
what's with the strategy we should take
and that's why we call them the racket
in here and then obviously we have the
project the project proves the geeks the
developers the programmers the testers
who are actually going to work now we
have also used metal field agility for
large team so when we talk about
multiple teams like we had here we
divided the pool better fill into
multiple sectors multiple small battles
that you need to win now each team might
be working on their own little battle on
little sector but what's the ultimate
part let's say our defense forces go to
one of the war zones ultimately they
have to win the complete warzone but can
they attack together and win it maybe
not so they divide the whole battlefield
into smaller zones smaller sectors which
they have to win how does this look like
from a large program perspective so
maybe one function maybe one small
product may be a component that we need
to complete so the requirements for that
so you can take a metaphor from there so
what are the goals that we talked about
project commander then because if we are
scaling appeal on service sector
commander who will be working on small
sectors with their own themes and then
the reca team that we talked about and
so on let me quickly give you a buzz
about what are these roles obviously
this is a two-day course but I'm going
to just try to squeeze it into next ten
minutes now the project commander is not
like a typical command and control that
you might assume from the name but he is
a facilitator he is also looking at the
broader vision he or she is also looking
at how the team will win what does
success mean for us so he is responsible
for the overall project he will mentor
and guide the teams into yes the
is what we need to complete then
prioritize the requirements for them
where do they need to attack first which
items which requirements they need to
work on first something very similar to
the product owner all that we have been
so used to while using scrubber and then
the sector commander has similar
responsibilities but for their zone
their sector their area within the
battle I am NOT going to go into details
of it because these slides are going to
be there with you so you can go through
them as the case might be now from the
racket team perspective as I said
earlier they are going to be the eyes
and ears of the team what do we need to
complete what does the architecture look
like what does the design look like how
do we organize the teams in a better way
so they are going to be strategists
working with the team but will they just
be done with their work once and then go
back like we typically do not projects
no they are going to be continuously
working with dating next is our troops
now very similar to what you guys just
did as part of that exercise we split
the large team into smaller teams maybe
three to four members each where they
are going to work on a particular
requirement particular story particular
non-functional requirement as the case
might be and then self-organized to
another requirement another feature that
you need to develop so that's what the
attack parties do so this is how a
battlefield map looks like on the top
you would see the features or the
requirements that we need to complete
each with a size and complexity right
here you have different roles defined
the different attack parties the
different project platoons that you see
which could be formed off your
programmers testers architectures as the
case might be and then the tools of the
battle which everybody needs to know now
before any argument goes into a bet
allow the train into those tools how to
use them yes so in this case let me when
I d there
you be a new training that the team
needs to do so they need to prepare for
that battle right now when they actually
start this battle and because the number
of requirements number of features might
be huge how are they going to track
where they are now so that is why the
team splits these large requirements
multiple requirements into something
called as a battlefield feature map the
requirements which are immediate which
are top on priority which you need to
complete now versus what can be
completed later so if you see these
little lines show the dependency that
they have these show how we which troops
or which team members are going to be
working on each of these and when are
they going to be completed so the
estimate in given is again by these team
members these troopers but every war has
certain rules so we are also talking
about certain rules probably you have
already experienced them but I just want
to repeat them once no true works on a
feature alone so whenever you are
working on a requirement on a feature on
a story on a task it's not somebody
who's working alone at least two team
members they work together to complete
it right sometimes we do multitasking
sometimes we do switching I am working
on item one and I turn to and item three
but here not more than two battles at a
time not more than two tasks at a time
why is that essential because even
scientists are now found out from human
behaviors right that the moment somebody
switches beyond to how much other
efficiency go down to any guesses
fifteen percent the moment the number of
switches into tasks and stories go more
than two so even though by splitting up
team members into ok fifty percent into
this project thirty percent of that
project we are trying to gain more
efficiencies but you actually lose
efficiency so no team member fights it
more than two battles at a time to task
at a time and what happened if you are
not able to move forward I think you
guys also did it if you are not able to
move forward for certain reasons I'm
it is very important to report back it
is very important to tell the product
owner tell the project commander we are
stuck we need to do something about it
there may be another team which is ready
and available to work with you there
maybe you need to change the tactics and
probably come back roll back the changes
but this is something that you need to
do continuously not just once and what
is the ultimate mantra that every team
needs to take the only thing which is
important here is success did we
complete that requirement did we close
on that tasks and if you are not able to
move forward we need to make sure that
we regroup again and see what we need to
do and that is why I think one target
that I take this is the flexible not
more than two lost features in a month
is that it is that it of target we were
talking about zero defects right your
toes are six sigma so we are talking
about not more than two features two
requirements that we have not been able
to complete in a month so this is what
battlefield abilities of all about now
these are some of the benefits that we
have seen implementing it with 16 we
rigidity for with about 16 organizations
now across india singapore and dubai but
these are some of the benefits which
have been reported across different
organizations and these are some
statistics some data which is the field
data which is available now so we
already have 16 successful adoptions
about twenty two platoons that means
close to 24 250 people and another
probably vanity here so we have closed
to foreign adoptions now now the average
reduction that we have seen in terms of
time to market in terms of the quality
is closer to twenty five to thirty
percent working versus traditional
methods versus working with even
struggle so that's why when we use
battlefield agility it has been about
the team's how does it
please self-organized to work on the
next set of equalities but obviously it
is very important that you divide your
requirements in the right way in the
right form so the teams are able to take
it on that's why when I did that little
activity I also give you a little
preparation time now prepare and see
what you are going to do a bottle so
that brainstorming with the team here at
continuous intervals is also important
now let's stop over to the case study
when we started it one of the largest
digital media houses in the world which
is about 36 products in the market now
we are all very familiar with that
obviously I cannot use the names here
but they started using scrum in 2012 and
because of multiple dependencies because
of multiple products involved there are
multiple security test which were
involved they were only able to add not
more than three features unique promise
to their products every month and they
were struggling where to keep their
Sprint's right because the stories will
eventually roll over because of our
dependencies now when we started using
battlefield agility and they started
adopting and improving after one month
so first month of us the more chaos how
do we adopted trainings that need to be
done and so on and so forth now the same
themes radios 35 features 35 new updates
35 upgrades in a month so that's the
kind of effect that we have these case
studies also available on our website
which you can go through i can also
share with them with you later but some
of these effects have been noticed when
we talk
and that's why I said the ninety percent
part is already had done experiencing
but we'll be late already by spring into
smaller teams working with smaller
targets and then finishing it but I just
now said is more about reading more
about understanding what you just
sounded so if you have any questions do
please put it on the app so that I can
get to the modem later I can on sauce on
the data but we also need to make sure
that we have learned those lessons right
am i right and we also need to learn the
last ones already say is the most
important part for the team to do what
is the proof that they have been working
correctly such as yes so let's try to
learn that mantra Lord and once more
before the close so shall be again do
some yoga yes 80 from your seats quickly
okay we are going to actually do a
little childhood game that we so used to
like so that's something that we are
going to be closing out with and one of
the favorite games that I used to play
was to form a train okay so what we are
going to do is in this whole room we are
put hands on the shoulders of people in
front of a steamers front of us and I'm
going to form one little trade which is
before people escape from this train
let's do it fast okay ready get started
and I'm gonna shout one month I which
all of you are going to repeat okay yes
yes keep up moving one single train
trying to enjoin the train 23 and 24 yes
now please shout with me when I say we
will when i say we will what will you
repeat then okay keep running keep
running keep running keep running yes
keep running through the room okay keep
running through their own quickly we
will wait wait wait we will thank you
easy the session pics on the App any
company questions I can be running away
though officials and city we do have a
and eating
do you have any questions by the way yes
we have more persons here first one says
how does it in your experience the
battlefield metaphor influency
atmosphere team ok I think we already
have some proof here right how do you
feel how do you feel happy yes or no yes
so teams are more happier they are more
efficient how is different from Trump
plus some store nothing except from the
use ok so scrum talks about time boxers
did we have any time box per se yes we
said we'll do it in three minutes but
when we talk about better fuel is really
there no time boxes the only thing
important is completing the features we
have to focus on features completion ok
ok another one is more mistake this is
not a job in my papers sorry ok yes and
this is what a lot of people when they
hear about battlefield when they hear
about the Defense Forces they do get a
feeling but the very important role of
the project commander when you talk
about comes into picture right is the
predicament of really doing command and
control or is it a more mentor and a
facilitator now in my opinion whether it
is a CEO or a product owner or a product
manager they also need to facilitate and
mentor their teams right here the teams
also focus on working software our
documentation that says activity focused
on we need to deliver scrum sometimes
say looking will deliver in two weeks
here we are focusing on delivery almost
every day so yes there might be opinions
we can discuss about this later yes ok
another one noticing lines how does that
feel
collaboration in commander which is
pushed to income yes so now in India let
me give some example from India and have
seen this change happening what happens
is we live in those small cluster of
houses or cluster of houses so this is a
time there's a builder there is a
constructor was going to do it it is
very easy everything run smooth the
moment when a collector and collectively
managing sometimes the team's was a
while that's why when I said one person
guiding the team or showing the light to
the team that's why the role comes into
picture but yes very important here
someone also mentioned walking word says
come on and control versus being a
mentor that defines the way somebody who
can provide leave listen to the team
then nurture them guide them to that
particular part that something is very
important on the role of that project
commander if these okay last one why do
we need a new with no D it seem to be
many similarities to happen yes as I
said earlier there is a lot of these
methodologies have already beam and use
but what we brought about was some more
discipline what we brought about was
more even more collaboration even more
faster delivery so yes you might read it
as a mythology you might read it as
something that again still do working
with scrum working another
expecting a normal project management as
long as we are able to use some of these
roots yep ok that's it for the go-to
guide app but if there are any more
questions we have no okay okay thank you