Dr. Mitchell's Scrum Shack

Ian Mitchell, BSc Hons, PhD, FRGS
DZone Most Valuable Blogger
IBM Certified Enterprise Developer
Scrum.org Advanced Member
Certified Scrum Master

Ian in the Dev Shed
Latest post: 12 August 2016

Ever since their inception some 20 years ago, agile methods have been associated with the delivery practices of small teams. This executive summary of agile scaling frameworks considers the most popular options for "crossing the chasm" to enterprise agile practice.

Read More..."Agile Scaling Frameworks: An Executive Summary"

    1. DZone Scrum Refcard Update
    2. Sprint Goals in Practice
    3. Ordering a Product Backlog to Minimize Development Team Dependencies
    4. Counting Chickens: Undone Work in Scrum
    5. Is agile transformation at risk?
    6. Pull in Practice
    7. Choosing Metrics for Agile Practice
    8. Choosing Columns for Agile Team Boards
    9. Stabilizing Teams for Agile Practice
    10. Agile Transformation in Organizations that Suck
    11. Method Wars: On the Commoditization of Estimates
    12. Method Wars: Scrum vs SAFe
    13. Limiting WIP: Stories vs Tasks
    14. Sprint Retrospectives in Practice
    15. Your boss, the Invader from Mars
    16. Sprint Backlogs in Practice
    17. The Agile Response to a P1 Incident
    18. The Kanban Sandwich: A Bite-Size Recipe for Agile Work Flows at Scale
    19. Agile Teamwork in Practice
    20. Sprint Reviews in Practice
    21. Taking One for the Team: the Refactoring of Failure
    22. Definitions of Done in Practice
    23. Product Backlogs in Practice
    24. Confirmed or Busted: Are the Mythbusters Agile?
    25. Agile Estimation in Practice
    26. Sprint Planning in Practice
    27. Winging It: Going Live with Technical Debt
    28. Scrum Master: Servant Leadership in Practice
    29. An Agile Health Check: The Daily Standup in Practice
    30. Suiting Up for Agile Practice
    31. User Stories in Practice
    32. Product Ownership in Practice
    33. Why Stretched Teams do Scrumban
    34. Getting Real with Scrumban

    An archive of earlier posts is available here.

    Agile Development in Practice
    "Agile Development in Practice"

    I was asked to put the In Practice series together into a book, so I have. Here's the blurb:

    The development of complex systems is fraught with difficulty. Many organizations have taken the vocabulary and outward form of agile practice, but without sponsoring the deep change that agile adoption genuinely requires. The benefits they hope for escape them...and their projects continue to fail. All too often, nothing really changes at all.

    This book tells you what agile practice is really about, and how to achieve it. The essential components of an agile way of working are laid out chapter by chapter. The book concludes with a concise treatment of the agile transformation problem, and shows how to leverage agile patterns and practices in order to resolve it.

    You can buy it at amazon.com. ISBN 978-1-908552-49-5, 260 pages.

    Gargoyle on Brussels town hall in Belgium
    Gargoyle of the Month

    This is a gargoyle on Brussels Town Hall in Belgium. The oldest part of the present building is its east wing. This wing, together with a shorter belfry, was built and completed in 1420 under direction of Jacob van Thienen. The 96-metre-high (315 ft) tower in Brabantine Gothic style emerged from the plans of Jan van Ruysbroek, the court architect of Philip the Good. By 1454 this tower replacing an older belfry was complete.The square tower body narrows to a lavishly pinnacled octagonal openwork. Atop the spire stands a 5-metre-high gilt metal statue of the archangel Michael, patron saint of Brussels, slaying a dragon or devil. The tower, its front archway and the main building façade are conspicuously off-centre relative to one another. According to legend, the architect upon discovering this "error" leapt to his death from the tower. More likely, the asymmetry of the Town Hall was an accepted consequence of the scattered construction history and space constraints.

    The Doctor Is In...

    Have a question about Scrum or agile practice in general? I hang out in the Scrum Forum and I'm a certified trainer. Post a query there and I'll help if I can:


    If you're after an overview of Scrum and what it's about, you can have a look at my presentation Scrum in an Hour.

    For the low-down on many topical issues, you can see Agile Tom, the Scrum Shack's resident cat.

    A little information about me

    m Chief Scientist at proAgile Ltd. You could pretty much say that software engineering methodologies are my bag.

    I specialize in agile transformations at enterprise scale, and tweet and blog quite actively about this. I'm also the curator at agilepatterns.org.

    Too much information about me

    Hobbywise, I'm into Extreme Ironing. I've ironed underneath the ice-sheet of a frozen lake, and I've also gifted the world with the "fusion" sport of bog snorkelling + extreme ironing.

    I do quite a bit of scuba diving in lakes and rivers, mainly in pursuit of antique bottles.

    Cave diving is another interest, and I have traversed White Lady sump in the Dan-yr-Ogof system while training under the redoubtable Martyn Farr.

    Of course, I have plumbed even murkier depths on public sector IT projects. This latter experience once lead to an outburst of Vogon Poetry; you can commiserate by reading it here.