Initiative Purpose

The purpose of the Women in Agile initiative is to encourage, support, and expand women’s presence in the Agile community. Ongoing efforts across Science Technology Engineering and Math (STEM) fields strive to increase recruitment of women in order to promote diversity benefits in their respective industries. However, recruitment activities often do not address the engagement and professional growth of women who are currently working in the aforementioned industries. These women must be empowered and active to create a sustainable community of female leaders and mentors to lead the next generation of women. In addition, greater levels of involvement from women in the Agile community will enhance the knowledge and idea sharing experience, benefiting the whole community of people of all genders.

This initiative expands on last year’s event at Agile2018, which informed attendees of the problems and current state and how to meet the issues with compassion. This year’s event strives to activate attendees to self-organize both at the event and in their local communities to make small but cascading changes. This initiative will create an avenue empowering attendees to take individual and group action through a motivating keynote, collaborative workshops, targeted networking, and will launch three new female speakers into the community through our New Voices program. These activities will address the symptoms of the involvement gap and will provide a sustainable learning environment to increase involvement, idea sharing, and motivation toward the broader causes of this inequality. The results of the initiative will allow the Agile community more sustainability through increased knowledge sharing, inclusion, diversity, and passionate involvement in the future.

Woman In Agile Conference

Keynote Speaker April Wensel

Empowering the Changing Face of Agile: Women in Agile

EVENT DATE: Afternoon of Sunday August 5, 2018

TIME: 1 – 5 p.m.

LOCATION: San Diego, CA – Marriott Marquis (Agile2018)

PRICE: $50/person


The #WomenInAgile workshop is back at Agile2018 for its third year! This year’s half-day event strives to expand our reach as a community and continue supporting, cooperating, and compassionately including all underrepresented groups in the agile community. Let’s continue driving change and inclusively supporting new ideas!

We will start with a keynote by April Wensel, an international speaker and the founder of Compassionate Coding, a social enterprise that’s bringing emotional intelligence and social consciousness to the software industry through training and coaching. She has spent the past decade in software engineering and technical leadership roles at various Silicon Valley startups, building products in fields like education, healthcare, and bioinformatics. She also mentors widely and volunteers with organizations like Black Girls Code to advance the cause of diversity and inclusion in the software industry. When not coding or coaching, she enjoys writing, running ultramarathons, and cooking vegan food.

April will be speaking on: Expanding Your Circle of Compassion for Greater Impact:

“Traditional professional advice emphasizing competition and ambition over cooperation and compassion has become obsolete. In the modern business landscape, caring deeply for others is not a weakness, but rather a source of incredible strength. Only by connecting to our core values and focusing on the human beings we’re serving through our work—our customers, collaborators, and the community at large—can we unlock the motivation and resilience required to speak up, take risks, and create positive change in our industry and beyond.”

The remainder of the program will create an avenue empowering attendees to take individual and group action through collaborative workshops, and targeted networking. These activities will provide a sustainable learning environment with actionable outcomes able to be implemented immediately to further expand our community.

Continued from last year, we will provide the opportunity for new voices in the agile community to be heard by including three short talks on the program agenda. Are you interested? Please submit a talk idea!

A networking happy hour at the hotel bar will follow the event! We hope to see you there!

Time Activity
1:00 – 1:10 Introduction and welcome
1:10 – 1:20 Code of Conduct
1:20 – 2:00 Keynote (April Wensel)
2:00 – 2:10 Break
2:10 – 2:20 Introduce purpose, themes, and abbreviated open space model
2:20 – 2:35 Marketplace
2:35 – 3:05 Sessions round one
3:05 – 3:15 Break
3:15 – 3:45 Sessions round two
3:45 – 3:55 Wrap-up and readout (~2 min each group)
3:55 – 4:05 Break
4:05 – 4:45 Short talks (3 speakers @ 7 minutes each)
4:45 – 5:00 Closing and feedback
5:00 – ? Happy hour at hotel bar

Initiative-Generated Content