In this Agile Online session, Mark Warner drew a compelling parallel between the journey of an amateur figure skater and the adoption of the Agile framework by organizations and teams. A passionate figure skater himself, Mark shared insights from his personal experiences on the ice, highlighting the importance of proper training and guidance to prevent falls and failures.
Mark began by posing a thought-provoking question: Why would anyone attempt a risky sport without proper training? And yet, he observed, many teams diving into Agile or scaling operations often adopt a “let’s wing it” mentality. This approach, more often than not, leads to pitfalls ranging from inefficiencies to outright project failures.
Drawing on his figure skating journey, Mark emphasized the significance of avoiding common missteps in the world of Agile. Attendees were enlightened with tips on spotting early warning signs of a struggling team and actionable steps to guide their teams toward success.
A highlight of the session was the discussion on the prerequisites for attending his talk. Mark stressed the importance of understanding the role of a product owner and having a foundational knowledge of the Agile framework.
Key takeaways from the session included:
- The dangers of jumping into projects with only a surface-level understanding.
- There is an absolute necessity for proper training, coaching, and guidance to truly harness the power of any Agile methodology.
- Identifying and addressing signs of inadequate knowledge and comprehension within teams.
- Innovative methods emphasize the importance of training and coaching in an organizational setting.
About Mark Warner
Mark Warner is an ICAgile certified Agile Coach (IPC-ACC) with experience coaching, mentoring, and supporting large, globally distributed software development teams. Mark is very familiar with the challenges of coordinating on-site and offshore multi-vendor teams. Mark has spent much of his working life leading teams, first as a Project Manager, then as a Scrum Master, then as head of Agile PMO, and now as an Agile Coach. He’s helped teams that were misunderstanding and struggling with adopting Scrum, Kanban, and Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe). Mark especially enjoys helping teams flourish by improving estimating and planning capabilities as well as communication and coordination, both within and between teams. A keen believer in continual improvement and lifelong learning, Mark holds an MBA (specializing in IT Management) together with various other academic and professional qualifications. He has a background in business intelligence and database solution development.