Defining a delivery strategy is difficult. We tend to underestimate the risks, aren’t explicit about our assumptions, and don’t involve the delivery team early enough in the process. I recently introduced the idea of delivering in bets to several clients. The idea that each delivery is a series of bets with different odds and risks. Each bet or investment could be matched with our corresponding confidence levels. For those bets deemed risky, we improved our odds by placing smaller bets. Delivering in bets helped us remain outcome focused, view our decisions as a portfolio, and express the expected timeframe of payouts. In each case, mindsets shifted and delivery performance improved.

In this talk, Chris will demonstrate how using bets can reshape your delivery approach. He’ll show how using some familiar tools such as Opportunity Canvas, Dual Track Agile, Story Mapping, and Monte Carlo Forecasting can improve results. He’ll discuss different methods for defining and sizing releases. Participants will leave with a new approach for identifying and forecasting a delivery.


Outline/Structure of the Talk

  • What is a bet? How does this language help and reshape our thinking?
    • Bets help us remain outcome focused
    • Bets communicate odds, payouts, and risk
  • Explain 4 Quadrant Model of Product Development
  • Create an Opportunity Canvas and Story Map to frame bet
  • Use Dual Track Agile to reduce risk on larger bets with smaller bets
  • Slice Story Map using bet thinking and results from Dual Track
  • Determine size and odds of bet using a Monte Carlo Forecast worksheet
  • Update Story Map to communicate and align delivery strategy

Learning Outcome

Gain understanding of modern product development using 4 Quadrant model

How to use the Opportunity Canvas to frame a bet (feature or capability you intend to deliver)

How leveraging Dual Track Agile reduces risk on bigger bets

How to use Story Maps for communicating risk and alignment of the delivery strategy

How to use a Monte Carlo forecast worksheet to size deliveries (bets) and communicate likelihood/confidence level with stakeholders

Target Audience

Product Managers, Product Owners, Scrum Masters, UX Leads, Engineering Leads, participants creating a release or delivery plan

Prerequisites for Attendees

There are no required prerequisites other than working as part of an Agile team. Some experience with sprint planning, release planning, or defining how work will be sliced and delivered would be helpful, but not required.

schedule Submitted 1 year ago

  • Chris Shinkle

    Chris Shinkle - Dual Track Agile - Balancing Continuous Discovery and Delivery

    Chris Shinkle
    Chris Shinkle
    schedule 1 year ago
    Sold Out!
    60 Mins

    In most organizations practicing Agile, all the focus is on building more stuff faster - velocity and predictability. And yet, we all know that delivering more stuff faster on time doesn’t guarantee product or organization success. Does this mean Agile doesn’t work? No, I don’t think so. But, I believe we are missing an important piece of this puzzle. It starts with recognizing there are at least two types of work in software development. There’s no way around it.

    Enter Dual Track Agile - a method for balancing these different work types. Most of us are familiar with the first type of work: Development. This is what most Agile practices are optimized for. Development tends to focus on predictability and quality. The second type of work, Discovery, focuses on fast learning and validation. The inconvenient truth is that these different types of work require us to work in different types of ways.

    In this talk, Chris will define the Dual Track method. He will explain the basic mechanics of dual track and how to get started. Chris will also cover the most common implementation questions:

    • Who is responsible for the types of work?
    • How should we organize our teams?
    • How does it change common Scrum ceremonies?
    • How do you plan?

    …and more.

    You’ll leave the talk with a new method for Agile product development and a plan for introducing it to your teams. Chris has seen this method work across many different companies and domains. Stop fighting your organization's velocity focus and give them a better way of working.