schedule 01:30 PM - 01:30 PM place Grand Ball Room

‘One bad apple soils the barrel’ is a very true saying even in an Agile environment. Not identifying and managing poor behavior and performance can completely undermine any Agile transformation effort.

How can Leaders, both within and external to Agile teams, set higher standards of accountability and hold people to it? Is self organization, peer pressure and the wisdom of the crowd enough to handle the wiles of organisational psychopaths?

The fact remains that most teams will have a few difficult personalities and underperforming members.

Agile is seen in many senior management circles as a softer, less accountable, way of working. Is that true?

This talk will delve into how the human psyche works, drawing on latest studies in neuro and psycho analysis, combined with Harvard studies, to outline the best ways to define, identify and deal with ‘bad apples’ in an Agile environment while honouring the values and principles of Agile

 
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Outline/structure of the Session

- Introduction

- The 4 types of difficult people in teams, both Agile and otherwise

- The challenges that Agile teams face in dealing with them

- Tips and advice on how to deal with each of the types in an Agile environment

I will be drawing on my 10+ years of Agile and leadership experience and using 'real world' case studies to illustrate each type and successful response.

Learning Outcome

How to hold people accountable in an Agile environment?

How to manage poor performance in an Agile environment?

How do deal with bad attitudes and difficult people?

How to do all this and maintain trust,  live core values of Agile and build a high performing team

Target Audience

project managers, iteration managers, scrum masters, line managers, leaders

schedule Submitted 3 years ago

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comment Comment on this Proposal
  • Ellen Grove
    By Ellen Grove  ~  3 years ago
    reply Reply

    Hi Phil - Great talk! Would it be possible to post your slides (or a link to where they are posted elsewhere) with your Agile India 2014 proposal  at http://confengine.com/proposal/192/caramelising-bad-apples- for the benefit of participants who have been inquiring about them?  This is how we've been making presentations available to attendees after the conference.  Thanks!

  • Ellen Grove
    By Ellen Grove  ~  3 years ago
    reply Reply

    Hi Phil

    This is a topic of great interest - in my experience many teams struggle with really practicing individual accountability, and there is often confusion about how to balance self-organization and building trust with dealing effectively with underperformance.  Combining a discussion of this topic with real-life case studies could be very helpful to many people.  What will be the balance between theory and case studies in your talk?

    Also, is this a talk you've given before or still a work in progress?

    Thanks!

    Ellen

    • Phil Abernathy
      By Phil Abernathy  ~  3 years ago
      reply Reply

      Hi Ellen

      I have given this talk 3 times before and to resounding feedback. Its a subject that is often avoided and the excuse 'we are Agile' used to glaze over prickly issues. 

      I use case studies to talk to the various typle of 'bad apples' that a team could encounter and its about 60% case and 40% theory behind it.....and tips on how to handle it. 

      I also use audience interaction cards ( green and red pieces of paper) that they can vote with on scenarios that I paint, and on case studies. The response is amazing to watch. 

       

      I dont mind giving it as a 20 min TED talk if thats the only slot available. 

      Cheers

      Phil

       

       

       

      • Ellen Grove
        By Ellen Grove  ~  3 years ago
        reply Reply

        Thanks Phil!

        The additional clarification about the content is useful to the review team.  I'm very much intrigued by this talk, and I appreciate your flexibility in considering alternate durations.

        Ellen

         

    • Ellen Grove
      By Ellen Grove  ~  3 years ago
      reply Reply

      Hi Phil

      Might you consider doing this as a 20-min TED style talk?  I'm certain the subject matter could cover a whole day, but I think it could also be very powerful as a focused short talk.  What do you think?

      Thanks!

      Ellen

  • Naveen Indusekhar
    By Naveen Indusekhar  ~  3 years ago
    reply Reply

    Hi Phil,

    I totally agree the sensitive nature of teams being accountable and self organizing and at the same time being able to segregate a bad apple isn't an easy topic to handle. It is also exciting to see the proposal be backed with lot of experience, research and study in the domain.

    Couple of questions though:

    1. Is the presentation intended for team members to help them scale further? Or is it for the management as a helping guidance?

    2. Will you be using "Productivity" as a scale for measuring underperformance? If yes, is it based on behavioural aspect or through Scrum metrics?

    Thanks,

    Naveen

    • Phil Abernathy
      By Phil Abernathy  ~  3 years ago
      reply Reply

      Hi Naveen,

      The presentation is intended for line management and for PMs and Iteration Managers ( Scrum Masters). The team members also benefit a lot from it as it shows them how to collectively deal with the 5% of nasties that can totally manipulate and damage a high performing team

      I address both attitude and aptitude and how one can disguise itself as the other. The problem is never identfying the symptom, its in identifying the root casue and in dealing with it. The focus in more on behaviour and attitude as opposed to aptitude but address both.

      Cheers

      Phil

       


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