Hans Solo

Yesterday, I tried to prepare for a meeting about implementing some practices from the Scaled Agile Framework. In particular the planning process and the IP sprint.

I used SAFe in my previous role and it helped the team to prepare for the next increment (8 weeks work). I need more structure in my workflow otherwise I get stressed out and worry that I’m missing something or not communicating frequently enough with the right people.

While I was trying to plan this meeting, thinking of how I can present the facts to the team, I felt really stressed and uncomfortable. I had a chat with our ATF about how I can get team buy in and how to present what I propose we try out. The more we talked about it, the more stressed out i was getting. Eventually I cancelled the meeting and went home feeling defeated.

I felt like I had let my team down somehow. I’ve made a reputation for myself that I encourage change, I’m brave and I push things forward. But for some reason I couldn’t get to grips with how to present my thoughts to them.

Eventually the coaching our ATF had done that evening sunk in and I realized that I was trying to frame AND solve the problem all by myself. EXACTLY what I tell pother people not to do! My whole mission is collaboration, clarity and communication. What the hell was I trying to prove?!

So today, I focused on framing and sharing the problem. I had an honest chat with our designer, I told her that I need a lot of structure otherwise I get stressed out trying to hold everything in my head. I laid out my requirements:

  1. Structure
  2. Timeline/calendar events of what to do and when
  3. Written out workflow that works for design and tech

We wrote out post-its with the key events and then laid them out like you would in a story mapping session.

DSC_0879

Feeling a lot better today! Things that were great about this process:

  1. Honest conversation and feedback about current process
  2. I practiced asking for what I need
  3. Exercise in self awareness – able to step back and change direction
  4. I now have what I need!
  5. Time factored in to keep the ideas/Funnel filling up so we can plan a road-map for a year in advance.
  6. I can plan and refine so we have stories ready just in time with just enough detail.

Next step is to see if this process works for the team, we also need to decide who comes to which events and scheduling them in without having too many meetings.

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