Storytelling: Developing the Big Picture for Agile Efforts

schedule Oct 24th 02:00 PM - 02:45 PM place Ballroom A

Agile reminds us that the focus of any set of requirements needs to be on an outcome rather than a collection of whats and whos.  Storytelling is a powerful tool to elevate even the most diehard requirements analyst from a discussion of individual requirements to a discussion of outcomes. Outcomes are the big picture that acts as an anchor for whole efforts and which is continuously broken down into more and more detailed backlogs. The onion metaphor that is popularly used in agile planning (Cohn’s Planning Onion) can be used to describe the evolution of backlogs. Building an initial backlog is much like peeling through the layers of an onion to get to the core. There are many mechanisms for developing and maintaining the detailed backlogs, including asking, observing, showing and all sorts of hybrids. Using the onion metaphor, techniques for developing and splitting user stories are the second layer of the onion. However, before getting to the center of the backlog evolution onion, composed of features, epics, and user stories, we need to understand the big picture. 

 Presentation:

Provide an overview of storytelling in a business context and a lean change canvas framework.

Exercise

The room will be broken into teams (aisles will be used if auditorium seating).  Each team will be seeded with a common product change scenario. Based on the scenario the teams will be asked to tell the story of the change and capture the story on a small change canvas.  The exercise and session will culminate in by sharing ideas and lessons learned.

(Note the longer workshop would break the changing canvas into epics and stories)

 

 
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Outline/structure of the Session

  1. Backlog Onion
  2. Scrum Starts With A Backlog
  3. Storytelling had been used throughout the ages
  4. So Where Do Backlogs Come From
  5. Storytelling As A Tool: Basics
  6. Facilitating A Story Telling Session
  7. Patterns
    1. Stories Using Journey Patterns
    2. Other Useful Patterns
  8. Eight Attributes Of An Effective Story
  9. Facilitating A Story Telling Session - The Nuts and Bolts
  10. A Process For Using Storytelling To Generate The Big Picture
    Pre-session Plan
  11. A Process For Using Storytelling To Generate The Big Picture:
    Storytelling Session
  12. Lean Change Canvas (Jeff Andersen)
  13. The Excercise
    1. Instructions
    2. Vignettes
    3. Lean Change Canvas
    4. Debrief

Learning Outcome

  1. Stories can be used to generate a more emotive vision of the future in the words of the leader(s) or stakeholders.
  2. Structured storytelling is an effective tool to elicit a description and nuances of the desired outcome of an effort
  3. A story is a powerful tool for establishing the big picture while connecting with customers or team members.
  4. Storytelling in the business environment requires a process.
  5. Three facilitation tools commonly used to help a team or an individual to build a story in a business environment.
  6. Starting any effort begins with establishing an understanding of what the project needs to deliver

Target Audience

Product Owners, Business Analysts, Stakeholders

schedule Submitted 1 year ago

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comment Comment on this Proposal
  • George Dinwiddie
    By George Dinwiddie  ~  1 year ago
    reply Reply

    Would it be possible to do this topic in 45 minutes?

    • Thomas Cagley
      By Thomas Cagley  ~  1 year ago
      reply Reply

      George,

      The short answer is yes (I am already customizing the material for Agile Philly which is one hour).  I am working on customizing the material so that the interactive material is not lost or overwhelmed by the lecture components.  I do not want this to be an in-person webinar :). 

  • Clareice Chaney
    By Clareice Chaney  ~  1 year ago
    reply Reply

    The messaging and exercises are good and should provide value


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