In a few years Spotify has grown from a small startup in Sweden to a pretty big company with more than 40 engineering teams in four different development offices on two different continents. And we have no intention of slowing down. Such rapid growth carries big challenges. How can we continue to improve our product at great speed, while growing the number of users, employees and supported platforms and devices? How do we stay lean and agile when we grow from a small startup to a big corporation? In this talk I will present how Spotify is addressing these challenges. I will talk about autonomy as a guiding principle, and how we support autonomy and create alignment throughout the organization.
Organizational hyper-productivity seems like the mythological Chimera: powerful albeit a fantasy. However there are examples of organizations that have outperformed their competitors, contesting with opponents 10, 20 and even 50 times their size. Anytime organizational hyper-productivity has been observed, two foundational patterns were present. Hyper-productive organizations are always characterized by a deep and shared unity of purpose of all its individuals, and a community of trust amongst them. So "Unity of Purpose" and "Community of Trust" can be considered as necessary preconditions for the emergence of a hyper-productive organization. However, the majority of organizations actually employ metrics that effectively prevent these two foundational patterns from gaining a foot hold. The reason why organizations find it so difficult arrive at a hyper-productive state is more rooted in what gets measured, rather than in a lack of willingness or inability to improve. This presentation will show how it is possible to foster Unity of Purpose and Community of Trust simply by thinking differently about what gets measured; and thereby set the stage for improving towards the hyper-productive state.
Kanban's value system can be organised into three layers - a familiar core that drives change, a middle layer that is about giving direction and alignment, and a protective outer layer of discipline and working agreements. Or from the outside in: discipline, direction, and drive.
This system (comprising nine values in all) can be put to practical use: it can help us engage more effectively with the organisation as it currently is; it encourages us to self-reflect on our responsibilities as change agents; it provides a convenient framework for the capture of community stories.
There is strong resonance too with the unifying ideal of the Learning Organisation, suggesting that this values-based approach may have broader applicability.
Did you know that teams where all the members are dedicated to that one team produce 36% fewer defects than teams that have even 25% "multi-taskers"? A relatively simple decision (dedicate folks to one team) for such a huge gain in quality.
Software process coaches know the above statement is true, but they have never before had the data to quantify HOW TRUE.
For the last year, Rally Software has allowed me to crawl around in the data of over 20,000 Kanban and Agile projects. We have been busy correlating "decisions" like team size, dedicated %, etc. to performance measures of Predictability, Quality, Productivity, and Responsiveness. We have some amazing results.
Have you ever wondered if switching to Kanban after Scrum is more or less effective than starting with Kanban directly? Come to this session to have your most passionate convictions confirmed (or refuted) with real data.
WARNING: Do not come to this session if you are not prepared to see data that refutes your most closely held beliefs about software development practices.