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Looking Out for the Whole Enterprise

Nov 02, 2017 | by Andrew Smith, Principal Architect | Tags: Agile

"Think Globally, Act Locally." I recall first hearing this phrase in my youth, applied to connecting our personal choices to environmental impact. I'm thinking about it today in the context of Agile teams: having the bigger picture in mind is an important piece of our overall success. I've seen this recently with several team interactions… 

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A Portfolio Approach to Test Automation

Oct 05, 2017 | by Andrew Smith, Principal Architect | Tags: Agile

At what level should you automate tests? Unit test only? GUI-driven tests? Something else? In this blog post, I reflect on a recent experience with both pain and value, and how I am coming to imagine a portfolio approach to test automation. 

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How About a Retrospective... On Our Retrospectives?

Sep 07, 2017 | by Andrew Smith, Principal Architect | Tags: Agile

Are our retrospectives valuable? Are our teams improving? These are two questions that come to mind when I think about comments or articles I've seen about resistance to retrospectives or the time spent in themI think we can learn a lot by conducting a retrospective… on our retrospectives. Through such a retrospective we seek learning by exploring the following questions:

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The Perils of Project Estimation

Sep 05, 2017 | by Briana Hoffman, Senior Software Engineer and Project Manager | Tags: Agile

The Hardest Part of Software Project Management

I have been a software engineer and project manager for over 20 years. Can you guess what I’ve found to be the hardest part of managing software engineer projects? It isn’t persuading the engineers to put aside their running shoes and holey T-shirts for customer visits. It’s not riot prevention when the coffee pot breaks down. It’s figuring out how much it’s going to cost to build the software and then persuading the customer that that’s really how much it costs to build the software. As a rule of thumb, if the price feels right the first time you hear it, it’s too low.

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