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Blog Post

7 Tips for Setting More Effective Goals

January 12, 2023
Goal setting is an essential tool supporting agility in complex environments. Various A-B-C formulas lead us to believe it’s a straightforward process, but setting and using goals effectively is challenging. Common pitfalls include not going deep enough with what we aim to achieve and bringing a success-or-failure perspective to the process rather than an empirical mindset. If it feels like your team is missing the mark, consider my top seven tips for setting more effective goals.
Blog Post

Fixing OKR Theater Using Agile/Scrum Principles

November 1, 2022
Many organizations are trying to improve the alignment between strategy and execution with the OKRs framework (Objectives and Key Results). There’s good intent there, but more often than not, looking under the hood, you notice:  OKRs that look more like tasks than strategic objectives – especially by the time they reach working teams OKRs are used to micro-manage teams and individuals rather than empower and enable them.  Too many OKRs are set without any respect/consideration of the ability to deliver them sustainably while dealing with other work in the organization. Defining OKRs and then forgetting about them until it's time to grade them. (Even worse, some organizations don’t even bother with a serious consideration of how they did on their OKRs…)  These are smells of "OKR Theater" or "OKRs in Name Only."
Blog Post

Improving Private Equity Outcomes using Agility / Evidence-based Operating Systems

October 13, 2022
In this article, I’ll explore the need for and the attributes of an agile business operating system related to Private Equity (PE) portfolio companies. It hopefully helps leaders of such companies and PE professionals focused on the operations side expand their perspective on what “Agile” and "Agility" mean in their world and how they can help them improve returns realized in their investments. 
Video

OKRs and EBM

August 22, 2022
In this short Scrum Tapas video, Professional Scrum Trainer Yuval Yeret discusses why OKRs and EBM (Evidence-Based Management as defined by Scrum.org) have some interesting synergies. (1:55 Minutes)
Whitepaper

Using Measurement to Improve Scrum Team Performance

August 15, 2022
Managers in organizations like to look at how their teams are performing. Traditional organizations often look at things like performance against plans to evaluate teams, but they need to ask themselves whether they are certain that the plans they develop will produce the results they desire. Most plans are merely guesses that assume that if a group of people do a series of things, the good results will follow. The problem is that plans can, and often are, wrong. So how can a team know whether they are performing effectively? This whitepaper by Kurt Bittner and Patricia Kong explores how to use measurement to improve the performance of a Scrum Team.
Blog Post

How to Measure Agile Maturity

April 7, 2022
When I coach, consult and teach classes, I often get questions about creating an agile maturity tool or defining agile maturity metrics. Agile Maturity metrics are used by many businesses to better understand their present agile practices and monitor to improve them. I understand the need for this kind of metric. I also noticed that the purpose and value of agile maturity metrics are misunderstood. This article will help you to find agile maturity metrics that bring value and offers a free maturity tool to download.
Blog Post

If You Want to go Faster, Try Empowering your Teams...

April 6, 2022
Some years ago, I was working with a team developing a new product at a technology company.  The team was concerned that their Time to Market (T2M) was too slow, and they believed that they would be able to improve it by automating their build-and-test process. Automating any manual process is usually a good investment to improve T2M, but I suggested that we should first look at their overall T2M using a very simplified value stream map to understand where they were spending their time. 
Podcast

Ask a Professional Scrum Trainer - Evidence-Based Management with Mark Wavle and Chris Conlin

September 29, 2021
In this episode of Ask a Professional Scrum Trainer, PSTs Mark Wavle and Chris Conlin along with Patricia Kong from Scrum.org take your questions about Evidence-Based Management (EBM) and content covered in the new Professional Agile Leadership - Evidence Based Management (PAL-EBM) training course! EBM is an Agile approach to help leaders guide their teams toward continuously improving customer outcomes, organizational capabilities, and business results. Mark, Chris and Patricia  answer all of your burning questions about measuring value, shifting to a more agile mindset, outcomes over outputs thinking and more!
Webcast

10 Steps to Integrate Evidence-Based Management with Scrum in 21 Days or Less

September 9, 2021
In this webinar moderated by PST Ravi Verma with Anca Tanase, PST Magdalena Firlit and PST Nagesh Sharma, they propose one possible approach that evidence based Agile organizations can take to overcome these challenges. They will propose 10 steps that can be followed in 21 days or less to integrate EBM with Scrum to achieve these outcomes.
Webcast

Using Objectives and Key Results (OKRs) in Scrum

September 1, 2021
Objectives and Key Results (OKRs) act as goal-setting framework for defining and tracking objectives and their outcomes. OKRs are often misunderstood and are a powerful practice to create razor sharp organisational focus. Isn’t Scrum about goals and focus as well? There is the Vision, the Product Goal, the Sprint Goal as well as the Sprint Review. These elements of Scrum can be very well combined with OKRs. Actually, you might want to turn it around, start with OKRs and map your Scrum implementation to them. In this Scrum Pulse webinar Professional Scrum Trainer Ralph Jocham with Agile Actors #learning  gives a quick intro to OKRs, and you then you will learn how Scrum can benefit from using OKRs to create a network of responsibility from the vision down to individual Sprint Goals. This responsibility network offers a transparency most corporations long for.
Blog Post

Time to Market - It’s Not Just About Speed

July 21, 2021
When I’m describing the Key Value Areas (KVAs) of Evidence-Based Management, I find Time to Market is often misunderstood to mean “just go faster.” We need to scrub off the scent of “we know what we need to do, we just need to do it faster.” In complexity, goals and execution have a lot of unknowns, and things emerge as we do the work. So, we will be unsuccessful if we choose to follow a plan, even if we do it faster.
Blog Post

Professionalism, Leadership and EBM

July 21, 2021
The role of an agile leader is to create and foster an environment where empiricism thrives to support the delivery of value. Evidence Based Management supports this, by providing a framework to link goals and objective measures to provide insights in to how effectively the organisation is working.
Blog Post

Making Measurement Meaningful with Evidence-Based Management

July 21, 2021
EBM provides organizations with an opportunity to use empiricism to improve customer outcomes by delivering greater value. It helps to improve collaboration by elevating conversations from opinion-based discussions to evidence-based discussions and decisions. EBM may feel awkward at first, but it will be rewarding. The seeds of learning and changing are there.
Blog Post

Success of Implementing EBM

July 21, 2021
Previously, I have described some challenges with the Evidence-Based Management implementation. There are plenty of challenges regarding the process of applying Evidence-Based Management, there are also great results.

Gestión Basada en Evidencia de Scrum.org

July 21, 2021
La Gestión basada en evidencia de Scrum.org es un marco de trabajo que provee un enfoque empírico para mejorar continuamente el valor entregado a los clientes, las capacidades organizacionales para entregar ese valor y los resultados de negocio en un entorno de alta incertidumbre.
Webcast

How to Make OKRs Better - Outcomes over Outputs

July 13, 2021
Objectives and Key Results (OKRs) are a powerful tool for setting and measuring goals, but like all power tools, they can come with great responsibility. Matt Hodgson, CEO and Executive Agile Coach of Zen Ex Machina and Patricia Kong, Product Owner of Enterprise Agility at Scrum.org will discuss how to use OKRs in informed ways, so that they can help organizations improve focus and lift outcomes. In this webinar, they will explore how to improve your use of OKRs by using Evidence-Based Management, an empirical framework developed by Scrum.org, including how to align OKRs with strategic goals, and why focusing objectives on activities and outputs leads to poorer results than focusing on outcomes.
Podcast

Mastering Agility - Evidence-Based Management

June 14, 2021
When creating any sort of product, it's important to understand whether we are moving in the right direction. But how do we know that? How do we measure that? And what metrics do we use for that? Agile organizations know that frequent inspection of results limits risk and improves the ability to deliver value. Scrum.org created a complementary framework called Evidence-Based Management. Patricia Kong is here on the Mastering Agility Podcast with Sander Dur to talk about how we can use EBM to elevate our ability to deliver value. (45:57 Minutes)
Blog Post

Why Experiment?

May 19, 2021
People in organizations are often afraid of running experiments. I have observed that approximately 70% of people responsible and accountable for products are reluctant to validate their assumptions by experimenting. There are several reasons for this hesitancy. The most common is misunderstanding what exactly the Agile experiment means. The second one is the negative result of the experiment. I always answer that this is fine that we have such a result! It means that there is no need to develop a solution that no one wants or does not fulfill users' expectations.
Blog Post

Returning the Organization Back to the Present

May 9, 2021
Does an organization live in the present or in the past? The answer seems obvious: of course in the present! But what if organizations are living in the past? How that night be the case and what can bring the organization back to the present? Let's dive deeper into this questions.
Blog Post

Measuring Agility

December 14, 2020
For organizations in the midst of an agile transformation, the question “how do we know if/when we’re agile?” is pressing.