Agile Day 9/15/10

The first Agile Day, held on September 15th, sold out with 120 participants.  We offered two tracks in the morning filled with experience reports for small/start-up’s (Silicon Alley track) and large organizations (Broadway track). During the afternoon we held an Open Space and closed with Panel. Below you will find the program overview and speaker bio’s from that conference day.

Conference Chair: Joe Krebs

Christopher Avery

Christopher Avery

Christopher Avery

Among the more outspoken, celebrated, and successful advisors on individual and shared responsibility in the workplace. Christopher Avery is an agile business mentor, the author of Teamwork Is An Individual Skill and hundreds of other articles, essays, and commentaries about productive relationships at work. Christopher consults to many of the world’s coolest corporations on the topics of responsible leadership, agility, and change. And he wants to make sure you expand your abilities as a leader everyday and develop cultures of ownership in your teams and organizations by applying the Leadership Gift in you.
 

Keynote: Are We as Agile As We Think?
Have you ever taken a good look at how we humans are wired from the viewpoint of complex adaptive systems? Paraphrasing Ken Schwaber, “Scrum doesn’t fix your problems. It exposes them.” Thus it is up to us to confront the problems ourselves, and we are all over the board in our ability to do that. Let’s expose and embrace our human defenses, coping mechanisms, and sources of resistance that keep us from learning, correcting, and improving.
And then let’s do something about it at the source. Get ready to access and master your innate Leadership Gift, and then introduce others to their Leadership Gift.

Monica Kumar

Monica Kumar

Monica Kumar

Monica Kumar is an IT professional with over 15 years of experience leading high performing technical and non-technical teams. She is currently Director of Project Management at Gerson Lehrman Group. She is a mentor, coach and trainer of Agile methodologies, processes and practices for her team of internal scrum coaches. She works closely with her colleagues to help enable the technology team to deliver enterprise capabilities that drive business.
Talk: Make me Agile – Expecting the unexpected!
In March 2009, GLG decided to embark on a journey to implement Agile (Scrum) in our Product and Engineering organizations comprised of ~150 individuals across our NY, Austin, Boston, India and Ireland offices. After rallying support for this transition from all executives and functional directors, we called in external coaches and started the quest to become Agile in earnest. We stuck to the textbook version as close as possible and adopted Scrum to its core. We also took some interesting decisions such as forming an Agile Leadership Team to champion the principles across multiple functions, planned coordinated monthly releases with cross-team release planning sessions and, instituted tools to support distributed teams. There have been some short term wins and there are some long term challenges which we continue to work on.
As we continue to inspect and adapt our processes, our belief in Agile and the principles behind it stands strong.
In this presentation, I will cover our impetus, journey, our metrics and how weíve matured as an agile organization over the period. Majority of the time will be spent discussing unexpected challenges we came across while scaling and sharing solutions weíve put in place. I will share many tips with those who are in early/mid stages of adoption.

 

 

 

Matt Raines

Matt Raines

Matt Raines

Matt Raines is Vice President of Technology for Bluefly, the leading online retailer of designer brands, fashion trends and superior value. He joined the company in May, 2002 as Director of System Operations. He is currently responsible for all areas relating to Information Technology, including Application Development, Quality Assurance, Project Management, Site Operations, Data Warehousing and Information Systems. He led two eCommerce platform implementation projects, the most recent being the migration to ATG. He has been a catalyst for change within the organization including leading the transformative effort of moving to an Agile software methodology.
Prior to joining Bluefly, Matt served as the Director of Site Operations for Bigstep.com, and Internet start-up company focused on serving eCommerce enabled websites for small businesses. Matt shares his thoughts on Twitter at @matthewraines.
Talk: History of Scrum at Bluefly: Part I
Bluefly management made a pivotal decision in late 2006 to leave the current waterfall project management system behind and migrate to Scrum. The initial rollout was fought by team and short-term result was less than stellar but everyone kept pressing on Ö because management was the driving force. Along the way we incorporated all of the operations teams and most recently added outsourcing to the mix. Itís been wild ride over these last 3 years. Come hear the good, the bad and the ugly but mostly our lessons learned along the way.

Lane Halley

Lane Halley

Lane Halley

Lane Halley is an Interaction Designer and agile/user experience coach based in Manhattan. She gained teaching and facilitation experience as a Principal Designer at Cooper in San Francisco, CA and has contributed to successful software projects at both startup and enterprise companies. Lane is an active member of the agile community, serving as co-chair of User Experience stage at the Agile Alliance Agile 2009 conference and participating in open space Agile events on the East and West coasts. Lane is also an organizer of the Agile Experience Design Meetup in NYC. Lane shares her thoughts on her blog and on Twitter as @thinknow.

Open Space Facilitator
At an open space event, people discuss things they care about with other people who share similar interests. An open space event promotes agile values of collaboration, conversation and self-organization. Open space events are used to surface common concerns, brainstorm solutions to a problem or simply to exchange information. At the start of the open space event, participants generate a list of potential conversation topics, choose what to talk about, organize into small groups, engage in conversation and then present their conclusions back to the larger group. The outcome of an open space event is a view into the ìhot topicsî that exist among your professional community, a chance to share your thoughts with peers, and learn what other people think. It’s also an excellent way to network and make new professional connections.

 

Rochelle Dire

Rochelle Dire

Rochelle DiRe

Since joining LimeWire in 2008 as the head of Human Resources, Rochelle DiRe has seen the company through a period of explosive change. Partnering with CEO George Searle and her progressive HR team, Rochelle has directed LimeWire’s transformation from a start-up to a mature company culture. She articulated and executed on a long-term organizational plan, which included the recruitment of LimeWire’s senior management team, 100% staff growth, and structure, processes and development programs that are in step with the company culture. She has continuously championed change initiatives that have allowed the company to scale and continue to prosper.


Talk: The Value of Collaboration in Fostering Agility
After ten years in business, the entire LimeWire development team adopted scrum in January 2010.
To make the transformation a success, an examination of our organizational habits was necessary. The resulting collaboration between our scrum and HR practices produced inspiring and far reaching results that allowed us to embrace constant change and energize our company in the face of dynamic external forces.

 

 

Cara Lemon

Cara Lemon

Cara Lemon

As Scrum Master at LimeWire, Cara Lemon leads the process improvement effort for eight agile teams. She joined the company in 2008 with an initial focus in quality assurance. When LimeWire decided to go agile in January 2010, she stepped into the newly created Scrum Master role. Since that time she has championed a scrum adoption uniquely suited to LimeWire at both the team and project levels. Cara holds a degree in Anthropology from Brandeis University and has found that the study of human behavior has many interesting applications in agile software development.
Talk: The Value of Collaboration in Fostering Agility
After ten years in business, the entire LimeWire development team adopted scrum in January 2010.
To make the transformation a success, an examination of our organizational habits was necessary. The resulting collaboration between our scrum and HR practices produced inspiring and far reaching results that allowed us to embrace constant change and energize our company in the face of dynamic external forces.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Adam Roberts

Adam Roberts

Adam Roberts

Adam Roberts is a Senior PMO Director at MTV Networks. He started his love of all things digital with his first computer, a Commodore VIC20 which he still owns. Educated in broadcasting and cinematic arts, his blazingly short career in local television was followed by 6 years at Electronic Data Systems as a Business Analyst and Systems Engineer. Riding the swell of the World Wide Web, Adam held different development and management positions in digital media and online games companies until the great bubble-burst landed him at KPMG Consulting in New Zealand in 2001. There he undertook his first agile project developing a content management system and web portal using principles of Extreme Programming. He spent the next four years traveling the world leading agile projects until taking a brief respite as a freelance video editor in Burbank, CA. He joined MTV Networks in late 2006.
Talk: Agility and Volatility: Agile Transformation at MTV Networks
The media industry is notoriously mercurial, and MTV Networks is no exception. In March 2008, the core software development group embarked upon an ambitious journey of wide-scale agile adoption during a tumultuous time. This is the story of how we did it, what we did right, lessons learned, and how far we still have to go.

 

Jeff Gothelf

Jeff Gothelf

Jeff Gothelf

Jeff Gothelf is a user experience designer based in metro NYC. He has spent his career designing engaging experiences for clients big and small. He is currently the Director of User Experience at TheLadders.com where he helps executive jobseekers and recruiters make meaningful connections with each other. Previously Jeff helped shape experiences at AOL, Webtrends and Fidelity Investments. Jeff publishes his thoughts on his blog and on Twitter as @jboogie.


Talk: Beyond Staggered Sprints: Agile user experience design teams in the real world.
When integrating design teams within an Agile framework, the general practice is one of staggered sprints keep the design team at least one sprint ahead of the dev team to ensure smooth transitions from sprint to sprint. Once put into practice however, the division of labor is never that clean. This presentation will cover how TheLadders.com product, technology and user experience teams successfully integrated an Agile framework into their process and evolved the “staggered sprints’ concept into a more holistic approach to UX/Agile success.

 

 

 

Jonathan Miller

Jonathan Miller

Jonathan Miller

Presentation

Jonathan Miller is a business-technology executive and entrepreneur who has spent over twenty years in information technology. In the early 1990s, Mr. Miller helped create Advanced Network & Services, the major national Internet Service Provider start-up that pioneered the commercialization and privatization of the Internet. In 1995, Miller cofounded iClick, the first developer of web-based self-service applications for Human Resources. iClick streamlined the administration of essential HR and benefits services to employees and managers over corporate intranets. As COO and a Director of iClick, he raised two rounds of venture capital, and built and managed iClickís software development and technology operations. He also played an integral role in sales and promoted the companyís image through frequent speaking engagements in the HR technology industry. In 2000, iClick merged with Consumer Financial Network, later to become ProAct Technologies, where Mr. Miller served as Executive Vice President and CTO. Jonathan Miller is currently CTO for the Equity Research Services business unit of Standard & Poorís, a McGraw-Hill company. He holds an M.S. degree in Electrical Engineering from Columbia University and a B.A. degree in Physics from Hamilton College.
Talk: Business Value-Driven Portfolio Management with Agile
Practicing Agile can lead to lean and high performing teams, but how does that translate at the portfolio or organizational-wide level? In the financial services industry most projects are measured by their return on investment. Business value in the form of increased revenue and/or cost savings and efficiencies are key metrics desired by senior management. At NYSE Euronext and at Standard & Poor’s we’ve experimented with models for leveraging such metrics on the foundation of Agile practices. In this presentation we will share our evolving model of Agile portfolio management and the measurement of business value leveraged at NYSE Euronext and at Standard & Poor’s.

Gabino Roche

Gabino Roche

Gabino Roche

Gabino Roche is a technologist with fourteen years experience in global IT environments at start-ups and F500 companies. During the deregulation of the telecommunication industry in the late 1990s, while at AT&T he helped in the system design of integrating disparate order taking systems to streamline their new bundled telecommunication offerings: local, long-distance, internet, and wireless. In 2000, Gabino joined the start-up Aluminium.com where they established one of the first online B2B auctions for non-ferrous metal contracts based on the London Commodities Market Exchange. In 2004, while at UPS, he led a two year business strategy to overhaul payroll/expensing processes for UPS’ Feeder operations, producing a minimal cost savings of $3 million per annum by designing a system with homogenous work activity tracking and tax management. Also a former member at McKinsey & Company, he currently works as the Managing Director of Application Development at NYSE Euronext. Gabino has practiced Agile for over four years with co-located and globally distributed teams. As a presenter at the Agile 2009 conference, he shared his experiences with organizational Agile adoption. Gabino holds an MBA in Global Management from the University of Phoenix and a B.S. in Management Information Systems from Seton Hall University.
Talk: Business Value-Driven Portfolio Management with Agile
Practicing Agile can lead to lean and high performing teams, but how does that translate at the portfolio or organizational-wide level? In the financial services industry most projects are measured by their return on investment. Business value in the form of increased revenue and/or cost savings and efficiencies are key metrics desired by senior management. At NYSE Euronext and at Standard & Poor’s we’ve experimented with models for leveraging such metrics on the foundation of Agile practices. In this presentation we will share our evolving model of Agile portfolio management and the measurement of business value leveraged at NYSE Euronext and at Standard & Poor’s.