Don't Mess with Button Bear (and other key lessons from the US Small Business Administration's Agile Transformation)

schedule Oct 16th 03:15 PM - 04:00 PM place Ballroom A people 8 Attending

Many organizations struggle with failure and turn to Agile as a game-changer. But how do the dynamics of government magnify the challenge of Agile adoption? Through this 45-minute case study of the "SBA Certify" program, the start of the US Small Business Administration's Agile journey, we'll

  • Describe what triggered SBA's transition to Agile from waterfall software development
  • Explain how key players from the SBA, USDS and 8(a) contractors Telesis & Enquizit led the transition to Agile
  • Review the combination of tools, technologies and practices that led to the successful launch of certify.sba.gov in just seven months
  • Cover how the SBA has built upon the success of certify.SBA.gov to become a leader in Agile adoption among small government agencies

In addition, co-presenters Aditi Dussault (former SBA Deputy Chief of Staff), Phil Jones (Telesis) and Donald Patti (Cedar Point Consulting) will propose a framework for understanding government inaction, helping others to make radical, transformative change in government possible.

(And, of course, we'll also explain Button Bear).

 
2 favorite thumb_down thumb_up 4 comments visibility_off  Remove from Watchlist visibility  Add to Watchlist
 

Outline/structure of the Session

Through our 45-minute case study, we'll cover:

  • OneTrack - The program that triggered the drive for radical change
  • Why can’t we move the ball? Understanding inaction in government
  • The arrival of USDS, the SBA's digital services vision and the SBA Certification Program
  • The tale of SBA Certify - from contract start to launch in 7 months
  • Agile takes root
  • Why the ball moved at the SBA
  • Implications for other Agile government initiatives

Learning Outcome

1. To help others to succeed in implementing and adopting Agile in government by providing a tangible, real-life example of a successful adoption & implementation.

2. To provide a framework for understanding government inaction that can be applied to trigger significant, lasting change.

Target Audience

This session is geared toward government Agilists and those who are helping to build a more agile U.S. government.

Prerequisite

Attendees need a basic understanding of Agile principles and practices, as well as an interest in Agile in government.

schedule Submitted 5 months ago

Comments Subscribe to Comments

comment Comment on this Proposal
  • Bob Payne
    By Bob Payne  ~  5 months ago
    reply Reply

    Can you get a Fed to co-present.  These sorts of case studies can be compelling but we like to get Client View as much as we can.

    -bob

    • Donald Patti
      By Donald Patti  ~  5 months ago
      reply Reply

      Dear Bob:

      Mary O'Toole, formerly with SBA and now with DHS, is slated to co-present and I have her listed as one of the co-presenters in the overview.  I also updated the description to show that she was with SBA. 

      Do I need to have her create an account so she can be listed as an official co-presenter?

      --dp

      • Bob Payne
        By Bob Payne  ~  5 months ago
        reply Reply

        Adding her as an official co-presenter would help.

        Thanks for clarifying.

        • Donald Patti
          By Donald Patti  ~  5 months ago
          reply Reply

          Just added her as an official co-presenter.


  • Liked Colleen Johnson
    keyboard_arrow_down

    Colleen Johnson - End to End Kanban for the Whole Organization

    45 Mins
    Talk
    Intermediate
    We often look to our engineering teams first to drive efficiency and speed to deliver but as we optimize the flow of our development processes we quickly create pressure in the organizational workflow with the activities that feed into and out of product delivery.  Product definition struggles to keep pace and establish a queue of viable options to pull from.  Marketing efforts begin to pile up as features release faster than we can share the news.  All of this stems from optimizing only one part of the overall system.  In this talk we will look at how to scale Kanban practices to the entire organization to provide the visibility, flexibility and predictability to make every part of the business truly agile.  
  • Liked Richard Cheng
    keyboard_arrow_down

    Richard Cheng - Group Hug: Implementing Agile Across Multiple Teams

    Richard Cheng
    Richard Cheng
    Principal
    Excella Consulting
    schedule 3 months ago
    Sold Out!
    45 Mins
    Talk
    Intermediate

    The patterns for implementing Scrum at the team levels have largely been set, but what about dealing with Agile and Scrum across multiple teams. Is the answer just magical words like scaling, or SAFe, or LeSS? What are the core concepts and successful patterns? Is it just one big group hug?

    In this session, we will explore core concepts around implementing Agile concepts across multiple teams. The session starts with a simulation that explores distributing people across teams (which will actually NOT involve any hugging). From there, this session dives into:

    • Prioritization across multiple teams
    • Product Ownership across multiple teams
    • Dependencies and team alignment
    • Communities of Practice
    • Communication and collaboration across teams
    • The role of managers
    • A quick look at scaling methods

    Coming out of this session, attendees will have an understanding of core concepts and fundamental helpful practices in implementing Agile concepts across multiple teams.

  • Liked Brian Sjoberg
    keyboard_arrow_down

    Brian Sjoberg / Julie Wyman - Understanding the Whole System, Not Just a Part

    45 Mins
    Tutorial
    Beginner

    Are your solutions to recurring issues having only minor improvements? Are some of these solutions actually making things worse in the long run? When answering yes to these, typically, we are trying to solve the issues with too narrow a view. Oddly we think we are addressing it at sufficient level but usually not. In order to see the entire picture we need a common language that will enable us to understand an entire complex adaptive system (e.g. organizations, teams, individuals). Join us as we learn a language called System Modeling (aka. Causal Loop Diagrams).

    With this language we will be able to have rich dialogue to gain a full understanding of the entire complex adaptive system so that we can create solutions at the fundamental level and not the symptomatic level. Addressing system issues at the fundamental level will significantly improve the system. Symptomatic solutions may give the appearance of improvement in the short term but typically make things worse in the long run. Unfortunately we usually pick the symptomatic solutions because they seem obvious and we don't realize the long term impacts because of feedback delays that could take weeks, months or even years to realize.

  • 45 Mins
    Workshop
    Intermediate

    Imagine you were hired to provide consulting assistance for a new team just starting out with Kanban. The team has been struggling with their implementation and is looking forward to your expert guidance, support, and advice. It’s your first day and you just walked into the team room to look at their board. You want to make smart observations and thoughtful interpretations so you can have meaningful conversations with the team members. The team starts assembling in the team room for the daily standup and you plan on making some comments afterwards.

    What comments would you make? What thoughtful questions would you ask?

    This interactive presentation provides a detailed look at how to interpret and thoughtfully observe Kanban Boards to better understand the work of your teams. We will start with an overview of the Lean Kanban Method and then proceed through a series of interactive exercises that give you an opportunity to review and interpret various Kanban boards. The exercises will increase your understanding of Kanban systems and provide opportunities to practice interpreting various board setups so you can have thoughtful and meaningful conversations with your teams.

  • Liked Matt Barcomb
    keyboard_arrow_down

    Matt Barcomb / Trent Hone - Thwarting Your Agile Despondence!

    45 Mins
    Talk
    Beginner

    Tired of Agile As A Lip-service?

    Feel like Lean is getting lost?

    Being asked to improve everything without changing anything?

    Do you want to know what you can do about it?

    If so, this talk is for you! Join Trent and Matt as they use Institutional Theory to examine the current state of Agile adoption, what it means for our work today, and what it suggests for the future.

    They’ll explain the increasing emphasis on frameworks, the move away from lightweight methods, and the paradoxes we’ve all observed in Agile adoptions. These developments follow clear and established patterns; they’re not unexpected. Come explore why we are where we are, and what we can do to move beyond Agile Despondency.

  • Liked Joshua Seckel
    keyboard_arrow_down

    Joshua Seckel - Lean Large and Small

    45 Mins
    Talk
    Intermediate

    Most organizations are embracing the desire to be lean, at least espousing the desire.  But what does lean mean in different contexts? Is embracing lean as a startup different than lean delivery as a midsize company or a large organization or a government agency? 

    This talk will explore what it means to be lean in various sized organizations, what is the same and what is different about lean implementations based on the size of the organization.

  • Liked Richard Cheng
    keyboard_arrow_down

    Richard Cheng - Story Time - 5 Top Attributes of a Product Owner

    Richard Cheng
    Richard Cheng
    Principal
    Excella Consulting
    schedule 3 months ago
    Sold Out!
    10 Mins
    Experience Report
    Intermediate

    In this lightning talk, Richard Cheng will share a story from his Motley Fool days in regards to the 5 things to look for in a Product Owner:

    • Bandwidth
    • Power
    • Knowledge
    • Interest
    • Vision

  • Liked Richard Cheng
    keyboard_arrow_down

    Richard Cheng - How do I know if I have the right Product Owner?

    Richard Cheng
    Richard Cheng
    Principal
    Excella Consulting
    schedule 3 months ago
    Sold Out!
    45 Mins
    Talk
    Intermediate

    Is your Product Owner available to the team, empowered to make decisions, knowledgeable in their business domain, engaged in the product and leading the way for delivery of value? This session does a deep dive in the these ideas.
The session starts with a brief Seinfeld video to demonstrate the importance of Product Ownership. The session then discusses 5 key attributes to look for in a Product Owner:

    1. Bandwidth
    2. Power

    3. Knowledge
    4. Interest
    5. Vision

    After that discussion, we will have an interactive exercise to identify what a Product Owner does day to day. The debrief will identify the balance a Product Owner must have between working with stakeholders, end users, customers AND working with the Scrum team AND product backlog refinement.

    The session concludes with the presenter sharing a Product Owner persona sheet. This persona sheet measures product owners across the 5 attributes mentioned above and presents a narrative on their core strengths and risks.

  • Liked Brian Sjoberg
    keyboard_arrow_down

    Brian Sjoberg - Let's Sharpen Your Agile Ax ... It's Story Splitting Time

    Brian Sjoberg
    Brian Sjoberg
    Agile Coach
    Excella Consulting
    schedule 4 months ago
    Sold Out!
    45 Mins
    Talk
    Beginner

    Do you want to write great User Stories (a.k.a. small features that are part of a product) that provide the vehicle for conversation and confirmation that we build the right thing? Do you struggle with completing stories (of business value) that are potentially shippable within a fraction of an iteration/sprint? During this session we will do a quick refresher on User Story formatting to include Acceptance Criteria. The reason for the refresher is that over the last few years, despite people using User Stories, I have experienced their usage far from the intended purpose.

    After the refresher, we will learn at least 2 techniques for splitting stories in this interactive workshop.

  • Liked Julie Wyman
    keyboard_arrow_down

    Julie Wyman / Sarah K. Park - Managing Resistance: How the Kanban Method Supports Lasting Change

    45 Mins
    Talk
    Beginner

    “Going Agile” is a big cultural change for most organizations and it’s significance, impact, and the effort required for successful implementation can often be underestimated. There are many benefits to be gained by adopting a more Agile approach, including quicker feedback loops, more focus on value, and higher levels of collaboration. However, for Agile to succeed in the long-term it’s essential to set expectations up front and to balance the amount of change with the amount of disruption it will cause. In this session, we will look at how David Anderson intentionally built change management principles into his Kanban Methodology and explore other change management techniques the Agile community can leverage when helping organizations transition to Agile.

  • Liked Brian Sjoberg
    keyboard_arrow_down

    Brian Sjoberg / Julie Wyman - Why Are We Going So Slow? ... Time to Get Your Productivity Game On!

    45 Mins
    Workshop
    Beginner

    Are you struggling with delivering a potentially releasable working product every iteration? Ever wonder what one of biggest reasons we have difficulty getting things done at the individual, team and organizational level are? Do you keep doing something even though you know it reduces your productivity and lowers quality? We are going to run an exercise that highlights one of the major culprits that you have all experienced and probably continue to experience. The exercise will likely ignite a little (or big) fire in your belly that will help you become more productive and improve the quality of your work. From this, we will discuss ways to improve this at the individual, team and organization levels.

  • Liked Mindy Bohannon
    keyboard_arrow_down

    Mindy Bohannon - Effective Meetings Sins and Tips

    Mindy Bohannon
    Mindy Bohannon
    Business Analyst
    Excella
    schedule 3 months ago
    Sold Out!
    10 Mins
    Talk
    Beginner

    Everyone asks us to setup a meeting but we are never taught how to do arrange a good meeting. What are the steps needed before a meeting takes place, what takes place during the meeting, and follow-ups afterwards to ensure its not a waste of time for yourself and others.

  • Liked Mindy Bohannon
    keyboard_arrow_down

    Mindy Bohannon - Case Study: Agile & Scrum during GiveCamp

    Mindy Bohannon
    Mindy Bohannon
    Business Analyst
    Excella
    schedule 3 months ago
    Sold Out!
    10 Mins
    Case Study
    Beginner

    GiveCamp is the most magical, tiring, and worthwhile 48 hours of my year. In 2015, 200 techies volunteered their talents and passion to help 19 non-profits with projects including data collection, websites, GPS-enabled mobile app, an educational online game, and database applications. How does so much work get done in such little amount of time? Agile at the speed of light– standups every 4 hours, adhoc swarming with heavy hitter devs roaming the projects, and lots of free food and drinks to keep everyone fortified.

    This case study reviews how so much work gets done in such a short amount of time using agile principles and scrum ceremonies.

  • Liked Daniel Davis
    keyboard_arrow_down

    Daniel Davis - So You Want To Go Faster?

    45 Mins
    Talk
    Beginner

    How frequently does a good agile team deploy to production? Not every team is capable of deploying "on every commit". What does it take for a team to even start deploying at the end of each sprint, or each week, or each day?

    Most companies don't realize that deploying more frequently often requires both significant technical change as well as cultural change. In this talk, I'll guide you through what it takes to deploy more frequently, both from the technical side of setting up pipelines as well as the organizational side of removing red tape. I'll draw on the unique challenges that teams must overcome at each step of the way, from deploying once a month all the way down to full continuous delivery. If your team has been struggling to go faster, come see how you can change to get there. And if you already are at full continuous delivery, come see how to go even faster than that!

  • Liked David Fogel
    keyboard_arrow_down

    David Fogel / Yogita dhond - TAS'mania! Successes (and failures) at TSA Agile Services

    45 Mins
    Case Study
    Intermediate

    TSA Agile Services (TAS) began on January 4th, 2017 after extensive collaboration with contracting officials, various bids, and the Agile community. Come hear the aspects that have enabled successful delivery within a government agency. TAS encompasses over 65 applications supported by a team of 80+ people. Also - because transparency is a large key to our success - we will cover the failures we have experienced and the struggles we are still working on. Lastly - it is important for contractors and government to work closely together - this presentation will be co-presented by two Agile Coaches: one is a federal employee and the other a contractor.

  • Liked Kevin Burnett
    keyboard_arrow_down

    Kevin Burnett - Navy Agile Roadblocks and How to Overcome....or Not

    45 Mins
    Talk
    Beginner

    Agile in the Department of Defense is frustratingly difficult to implement. Acquisition regulations and cyber security policies impact successful agile development endeavors for the Navy. During this session, I will detail the successes and failures of agile development as it is being applied to the My Navy Portal program which is the single point of entry, self-service portal for sailors to manage their careers from hire to retire. I will discuss the acquisition, systems engineering process, and cyber security issues encountered during this agile development endeavor and how we were either successful or failed to resolve.

  • Liked Daniel Davis
    keyboard_arrow_down

    Daniel Davis - Everything Object Oriented Design Taught Me About Leadership

    45 Mins
    Talk
    Beginner

    Most senior software developers eventually find themselves in a position of leadership. About two years ago, I was in the same boat, being asked to take over as tech lead for a large agile project. I felt unprepared, I didn't know the first thing about being in charge! I found myself falling back to the thing I had spent years learning: object-oriented design principles.

    In this talk, I'll walk through some of the parallels between clean coding and leadership. I'll discuss some design anti-patterns with different styles of leadership and how to avoid falling into classic management traps. If you've always felt like your bosses treat you like a class with too many responsibilities, come learn how to code better leadership!

  • Liked JENNIFER M FORREST
    keyboard_arrow_down

    JENNIFER M FORREST - Jira 101

    45 Mins
    Talk
    Beginner

    This session is for newbies to JIRA who want to learn how to survive (and thrive!) using JIRA every day. We'll be walking through a variety of real projects in JIRA and you'll come away with a better basic understanding of the tool. 

  • Liked Rose Hyde
    keyboard_arrow_down

    Rose Hyde - Five Common Agile Transformation Misconceptions

    45 Mins
    Talk
    Intermediate

    Organizations follow frameworks and playbooks and drive to achieve successful results in their Agile transformation.   As the organization and teams continue on their journey the challenges may seem to increase rather than decrease.   The larger the organization and the more detailed their software development life cycle the more arduous it is to make the shift.   This session discusses observations on five common misconceptions that slow an Agile transformation and the ability of teams to embrace the mind shift needed to be Agile.