Firefighting is one of the biggest and most common causes of lost productivity and morale in software development. It usually manifests as developers being pulled off their project to urgently fix something - the live site is spewing 500 errors, there's a button in the wrong place, or a senior »

Agile transformation: The Low

A few months into any company's journey towards agile development I often see a point which I call the Low. This is where you've brought in a few experts, and done a few of the things they've said... but nothing seems to have improved and now people are wandering round »


What's the difference between a merely good Scrum organisation and a great one? The answer is waste. Waste in a Scrum context is loosely defined as any activity which does not result in something the customer uses. At its most obvious we're talking things like TPS reports and bikeshedding, but »

Avoiding nightmare releases

Something I've seen a lot of supposedly Agile teams fail with is releases at the end of a project. Everything up to that point ticks along nicely, but the final sprint is a monstrous combination of time extensions, shifting scope, last-minute changes and unexpected problems. I've seen all sorts of »

JFDI Deployment

One of the things which small and startup companies often do so much better than large, established ones is encapsulated in this four-letter acronym: JFDI. Just Fearlessly Do It. (You can exchange your own 'F' if you prefer). The reason you JFDI so much as a small company is because »