Over the past few months, I have been in traffic jams on the highway several times when traveling to our weekly hike.  In more than one instance someone has decided to pull over and drive on the berm.  In more than a few cases the outcome of this technique for getting things done ends poorly. Despite the unpredictable outcome, jumping the queue is practiced by many in traffic and even more when funneling work to teams. The consequences when working on information technology products are far more predictable than driving, and they are ALWAYS bad. Let’s fix some of the problems leading to queue jumping.

We also have a visit from Susan Parente, who brings her I Am Not A Scrumdamentalist column to the cast.  We discuss risk management when using hybrid agile approaches. 

Contact Susan on LinkedIn linkedin.com/in/susanparente or at Parente@s3-tec.com


The majority of work entry problems are caused by eight problems. The eight problems often occur in clusters and are a reflection of organizational culture.  Knowing that there are eight problems is useful when they can be recognized. Unless people wear their motivations on signs hung around their neck, recognition requires conversation and observation.  Fixing any problem starts with recognizing that problem. 

We will also have a visit from Susan Parente who brings her, Not A Scrumdamentalist column to the podcast. Today Susan and I discuss the concept of Hybrid Agile and the new book Hybrid Project Management https://amzn.to/3al4b4F that Susan wrote with Mark Tolbert



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The Software Process and Measurement Cast 607 features our interview with Mark Tolbert and Susan Parente to discuss their new book Hybrid Project Management: Using Agile with Traditional PM Methodologies to Succeed on Modern Projects. Agile hybrids are often pilloried, Mark and Susan make a strong case that hybrids have a place in delivering value. Without hybrids, there are places that can’t go!   (more…)

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SPaMCAST 579 features our essay on fear-driven agile hybrids.  Most hybridization issues stem from techniques that conflict with the framework and/or agile principles due to clashes with culture or lack of knowledge. Blindly making changes will never reflect what the environment’s context demands. Expecting to get good results by randomly changing how you work won’t be effective. 

We will also have a visit from Jeremy Berriault from QA Corner.  Jeremy and I talked about frameworks and what should happen if the framework is not helping.  

Contact Jeremy at https://www.berriaultandassociates.com/
Email: Jeremy.Berriault@Berriaultandassociates.com 

Business Agility Conference (more…)

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SPaMCAST 575 features our essay on the lightning-rod issue: hybridizing agile methods and techniques. We can all agree that fitting a model to an observed reality requires the flexibility to hybridize. Why do we it so wrong so often?

We will also have a visit from Jon M Quigley and his Alpha and Omega of Product Development column. Jon and I talked about Deming and his impact on our lives and a book club we are launching early next year.

Re-Read Saturday News (more…)

Special Parking For State Police

A hybridization of parking rules!

As we complete our 2019 arc on hybridizing how teams use agile, I want to draw a distinction between messing with frameworks and messing with techniques. Less than a decade ago during a Keynote at a Scrum Gathering, Ken Swaber described user stories as barnacles on the ship of Scrum. He used the metaphor of barnacles to describe the impact of increased drag and reduced efficiency. In 2019, user stories are almost as ubiquitous as Daily Scrum meetings because they are useful and facilitate agility. Frameworks are scaffolds that by design are not complete methodologies. When context demands, the right techniques can be used to augment the framework. Most hybridization issues stem from techniques that conflict with the framework and/or agile principles. (more…)

I recently spoke with Susan Parente while recording an episode of her Not A Scrumdamentalist column about the idea of hybrid agile. The definition of hybridization spans a wide range of territory ranging from combining methodologies and frameworks to changing techniques. For example, Scrumban combines Scrum and Kanban.  SAFe combines many frameworks and methodologies. Prima facie evidence suggests that hybridization at the methodology level is part and parcel of agile implementations. Hybridization of techniques is characterized as changing or combining techniques so they serve other purposes.  For example, changing the daily scrum from a planning meeting to a status meeting. Hybridization has the potential to generate value or conflagrations that destroy value.  

Evaluate Hybrizations using the following simple checklist: (more…)