I’m now of the opinion that creating a specific set of tools for software development and giving them a name (Scrum) was a double-edged sword. I think it made it successful (viable even?), but resulted in serious long-term consequences.

I’m finding framing lean and agile in terms of shortening learning loops is extremely effective. It helps take the discussion away from “how do I make this tool work” and refocuses it on “how does this tool help me shorten learning cycles?”

I think I like the idea of TheBrain (which, admittedly, I’ve only just begun playing with and don’t fully understand), but the iOS apps, where I would exclusively use it, are infuriating.

Does anyone have alternatives they suggest?

“You can’t manage something if you can’t measure it.”

I’d add:

“Just because you can measure something doesn’t mean you should manage it.”

I find the argument that “You can’t build a high-performing team if they didn’t get to choose work they are passionate about” to be a poor excuse for poor leadership. Is it harder? Sure. But not impossible.

In the US anyhow, I believe it likely employment continues to bifurcates into a handful of massive firms and a massive number of small firms. I think a next frontier of lean/agile is therefore figuring out how to effectively bring this knowledge to small firms.

If we accept that lean/agile are primarily learning systems, then a key question to ask is, “What is it trying to help us learn?” The double-loop learning followup question should then be, “What is it that we need to learn?”

If lean/agile are thought of first as learning systems, Respect for People moves from good and necessary to critical. This changes how you frame everything, including discussions around what to change. It also brings an interesting perspective to the term “organizational learning.”

I can’t stop thinking about this notion I had that lean and agile could be viewed primarily as learning systems, and how that transforms how you think about them.

It doesn’t help that The Lean Strategy has been published since and makes a similar argument.

“[W]e’re not going to make people work better (after having decided what they should do differently). We’re going to seek and explore with them what working better means.”


“From blame comes shame. And then hurt, denial, anger, and retaliation.”

  • Daring Greatly - Brené Brown

Unfortunately, in many organizations, “accountability” is code for “blame.” With disastrous consequences.

“The perception that vulnerability is weakness is the most widely accepted myth about vulnerability and the most dangerous.”

  • Daring Greatly by Brené Brown

After 16 years with my employer, today was my last day. It was also the last day for my colleagues. It was a good run, but I’m excited to see what the future holds!

I’ve been very quiet of late, preparing for something I expect will finally happen around the end of this month.

Shortly after, I intend to be back in force. As I prepare, if there are any topic areas I’ve touched on that are particularly interesting to you, please let me know.

I co-taught SAFe PO-PM training with a colleague the last two days, the first training I’ve done in a long time. It was such a great time! We had a very engaged class that was asking really good questions. It reminded me of the parts of my job I really love. I’m still exhausted (as an extreme introvert, training really wipes me out), but it’s completely worth it. 👍🏻

There has to be some way to disable the Caps Lock key on my Smart Keyboard Folio. I can’t imagine a single scenario where I want it active and yet I hit it nearly daily.

“We, … in knowledge management and strategy work, hire experts and consultants to tell us how the world works instead of figuring it out ourselves. We outsource the legwork.”

Boy does that hit home.