Where has the customer gone in large scale enterprise agile frameworks? Customer Collaboration is one of the main tenants of the Agile Manifesto, but it seems that have we lost touch with this concept as we have scaled agile into large organizations. If we look at the SAFe Big Picture, the customer is represented, but only at the end of the process consuming the solution. This talk explores how and why it is important to pull the customer to the beginning and middle of the process and not just the end. This isn't to pick on SAFe -- the customer doesn't appear at all on the graphics for Disciplined Agile, LeSS, and Nexus at all! The concepts and principles explored in this presentation are universal in any large enterprise and can, and should, be applied to to any framework.
Each of the main enterprise agile frameworks today (Disciplined Agile, SAFe, LeSS, Nexus, etc) have a graphic representation of their model, which present an inside-out view of how an enterprise is organized to delivery in an agile fashion. But what do our agile enterprises look like from the outside, from our customers' view point? As agile becomes widely adopted as the way of developing products, there is a growing gap with where new product development ideas are generated and how customer input is integrated into the agile process. Increasingly we are seeing organizations struggling because of a lack of an effective and experienced product management group and even experienced agile coaches not knowing how to effectively engage customers in their process.

 
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Outline/Structure of the Talk

0:10 -- Introduction: Why the customer is important and today's product management imperative. Relate several real-life stories of organizations that had to rebuild their product management function and rebuild their approach to customer input
0:20 -- Where's the customer? Exploring the graphics from SAFe, LeSS, DAD, Nexus looking for the customer. Are they there, can we find them, is there a proxy? What do these frameworks look like to the customer looking from the outside in?
0:30 -- Putting the customer first. What would these frameworks look like if we made Customer Collaboration a first order objective, as it is in the Agile Manifesto? Examine Effective models for engaging customers. Identifying the right level of customer engagement for the type of work and product you are creating in your organization, and then applying specific techniques for engaging customers in the right way and at the right time. Specific real world examples from different types of organizations and the ceremonies and cadence for involving customers will be shared.
:40 -- Q&A and wrap up.

Learning Outcome

  • - Understanding the role of the customer, the voice of the customer, and market validation of new product ideas
  • - How to define who your "customer" is
  • - How to identify opportunities for involving customer input into your enterprise agile process, taking into account different kinds of product development and a framework for identifying the right way to engage customers in your process
  • - Understanding how design thinking, lean start-up, and usability testing are powerful tools when combined with agile for engaging the customers

Target Audience

Product Owners/Managers, Agile Coaches, Managers/Leaders, Change Agents

Prerequisites for Attendees

Participants should be experienced Agilists and this talk is most appropriate for people building large, complex product development efforts.

schedule Submitted 9 months ago

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