Gatineau-Ottawa Agile Tour 2016 Day 1

Mon, Nov 21

    Registration and Breakfast - 90 mins


    Keynote 1: The uncertainty advantage - Doc Norton - 60 mins


    Break - 15 mins

  • Added to My Schedule
    Steffan Surdek

    Steffan Surdek - The Silent Leadership Crisis

    schedule 09:45 AM - 10:30 AM place Leadership and people (Agile Pain Relief Room)

    There is a silent leadership crisis going on right now in workplaces around the world. The generation shift and the changing needs of current workplaces are forcing an older generation of leaders to evolve their leadership styles. The crisis is in how these leaders either are not even aware that their leadership needs to change or are aware of it but do not know what to do about it and no one around them can have the the right conversations with them to help them. This conference explores this silent leadership crisis from the perspective of an integral coach that works with these leaders in various organizations on a daily basis .

    This is not a session of blame, it is a session where participants can better understand some of the organizational and people dynamics they are living through at work as a person. This talk is for directors, line managers, software architects, project managers, team leads because of their key roles in organizations but it is also for anyone else in a leadership role that feels their leadership is ineffective.

    This talk is centered around how to bring collaborative and authentic leadership to the workplace and will also allow participants to reflect on their own leadership styles. The content is based on Steffan's personal experience coaching in organization over the last five years.

  • Added to My Schedule
    Rob Villeneuve

    Rob Villeneuve - Agile for Normal People - non-technical teams need agile too!

    schedule 09:45 AM - 10:30 AM place Technical skills and practices (Neuland Room)

    Agile is alive and well in the technical sphere, but why should we stop there?  At the root of it teams from every discipline are simply a group of people working together to reach their goals. Their subject matter is unique but the challenges are not.  We are all normal.

    Rob Villeneuve is a software developer turned CEO, and who used Agile to empower a team of 50+ at  This first hand account will share the transition story of from a few agile teams into an Agile Organization.  We will explore the rewards of thinking agile at every level, from leadership to the front line, and Rob will share experiences from each department at Rebel embarking on their own Agile journey.  If you wish others in your organization would simply try agile, or would improve their understanding of why you agile, then you may have something to learn from the cross-training experiences of introducing agile to non-technical teams.

     Rob has introduced agile to teams of many sizes, disciplines, and experience levels including: Board of Directors, Leadership Teams, Sales, Marketing, Finance & Accounting, Customer Service/Call Centre, Software Development, Network Operations, and Architects (Building Architects).

  • Added to My Schedule
    Scott Ambler

    Scott Ambler - Beyond “Easy Agile”: How to Overcome the Challenges of Adopting Agile in Established Enterprises

    schedule 09:45 AM - 10:30 AM place Scaling Agile (Halogen Room)

    Many agile methods and strategies are geared towards small teams working in reasonably straightforward situations. That’s great work if you can get it. Most organizations that are adopting agile today have been in operations for decades and sometimes centuries. They are typically dealing with significant investments in legacy systems and processes that won’t go away any time soon. They have an existing culture that is usually not-as-agile as it could be and an organization structure that puts up many roadblocks to collaboration. Their staff members are often overly specialized and many people do not have skills in agile software development techniques, and there are many thoughts as to what needs to be done to improve things, the adoption of agile being one of many. This is certainly not the startup company environment that we keep hearing about.

    In this presentation Scott Ambler reviews the challenges faced by established enterprises when transforming to agile and what enterprise agile means in practice. He then overviews the Disciplined Agile (DA) framework, a pragmatic and context-sensitive approach to enterprise agile, working through how it addresses the realities faced by modern organizations. Scott then works through advice for transforming your enterprise to become more agile, including the people-process-tools triad and the skills and experience required of enterprise agile team coaches and executive agile coaches. He ends with an overview of proven strategies for adopting agile in less-than-ideal environments

  • Added to My Schedule
    Gillian Lee

    Gillian Lee - The Product Owner Value Game: Uncover Strategies to Deliver More Business Value

    schedule 09:45 AM - 10:30 AM place Hands-on learning (MXI Room)

    What if your team worked from a common strategy to deliver more business value?  A strategy resulting from best practices they uncovered from a simple game that can be played quickly.

    Scrum teams need to agree on a sprint plan. And the Product Owner Value Game uncovers best practices that pay off in the real world. The game teaches people to think about refinement and value in a different way. In the game, teams compete to deliver the most business value from a backlog of items with associated business value and required effort to implement. An element of uncertainty is present in the game just as in the real world. 

    Deliver more business value each sprint. 

  • Added to My Schedule
    Anthony P. Sheehan

    Anthony P. Sheehan / Ryan Androsoff - How Agile is leading the Digital Government Revolution

    schedule 09:45 AM - 10:30 AM place Agile in Government (Scrum Alliance Room)

    Governments have typically been slow in adopting Agile principles. In 2014, the launch of the product was generally considered a failure. At the same time, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) published a report recommending governments to implement Digital Government Strategies to bring them closer to citizens and businesses. Since then, the flurry of activities around Digital Government has accelerated and led to some very interesting organizations and initiatives such as:

    Agile methodologies - combined with user-centred design principles - are often at the heart of these Digital Government initiatives.  The timing has never been better to help governments accelerate the implementation of Agile principles, user-centred design and outcomes management to deliver better value quicker to citizens.

    Through this session, attendees will:

    • Better understand governmental constraints and why governments have typically been slow adopters of Agile principles
    • Learn about recent worldwide Digital Government trends and initiatives
    • Review approaches as to how agile methodologies can be applied in the context of existing Government of Canada IT project management frameworks
    • Discuss examples of Government Agile projects and products that have delivered better value quicker to citizens
  • schedule 09:45 AM - 10:30 AM place More hands-on learning (Pyxis Room)

    My experience report is based on many years of collaborating with PEOPLE....and learning how to really collaborate better.

    Being authentic is a place I dial into when I am true to myself. It's about the choice to show up and be real. This allows vulnerability to be present and it's a choice we can make every day.

    I call it being honest - with ourselves and with others.

    This experience report will step beyond traditional Agile Values ... and share what I discovered with clients, global organizations and the United Nations - the presentation/experience report has (ups and downs)  - 

    Let's explore useful learnings about agile and human techniques to help participants gain insight and develop important skills with the people and the teams you encounter - let's explore wellbeing!

    I was at Agile2016 in Atlanta to present this year an experience report about Agile Marketing - the most important outcome from this conference for me - was the number of people who wanted to talk to me after my presentation about:
    Vulnerability, happiness, trusting ourselves, wellbeing, speed to market and how to talk to clients, clients -clients!!

    This talk is centered around client servicing, client solution making, relationship development stages and collaborative drivers.

    Marie-Christine’s personal hands on client experience and project management will provide participants a unique outlook on process, and discover how to bridge the gap between PEOLE (client, executives, stakeholders, teams) and the business. It’s a fundamental shift in mindset. Instead of focusing on what you can sell or deliver, the focus is shifted to what are the needs while leveraging rapid iterations for maximum output and trust.

    Few of us consciously choose vulnerability.

    Why? The stakes are too high.



    Break - 15 mins

  • schedule 10:45 AM - 12:15 PM place Leadership and people (Agile Pain Relief Room)

    You're a Manager or Executive not a ScrumMaster - what is the role of Leadership in an Agile Organization? You've seen the Dan Pink video on Motivation and are mystified as to how to help.

  • Added to My Schedule

    toddcharron - Following Your Fear: How to do the things you've always wanted to do

    schedule 10:45 AM - 12:15 PM place Technical skills and practices (Neuland Room)

    What stops you from doing the things you’ve always wanted to do? What stops teams from being truly great? What hinders most Agile transformations?


    That feeling in your gut when deep down you know what you need to do, but you're not sure if you can do it.

    Check out any of the “x things most successful people do” posts online. Every single one of them will mention fear. Why? Because fear can either energize you to success or paralyze you into inaction.

    I’ll show you how to move from paralysis to action and how you can apply these techniques to yourself and to your Agile teams. How you, as a coach, can create safe environments so that your teams can be fearless.

    In addition, we'll work hands on with the Fear Follower Canvas to help you move those things you want to do from the someday pile to done!

  • Added to My Schedule
    Jeff Kosciejew

    Jeff Kosciejew / Andrew Annett / Ardita Karaj / Ellen Grove / Jeff "Cheezy" Morgan / Lee Elliott / Sue Johnston - What we've learnt as Agile Coaches

    schedule 10:45 AM - 12:15 PM place Scaling Agile (Halogen Room)

    Join a panel of experienced Agile Coaches for a discussion and Q&A of their experiences as coaches. Each of the panelists has a different background, and a unique journey into their role as an Agile Coach. Along the way, they've each built up a wide and diverse set of skills, from their careers, interactions, and experiences. 

    What have some successes been?
    How do we even define success for ourself, as an Agile Coach?
    More importantly (and hopefully more entertaining), will be some of the lessons learned... We'll explore what was tried, but had a surprising and unexpected outcome. 
    And, we'll discuss some of the ways experienced coaches continue to learn, share, grow, and develop everyday!

  • Added to My Schedule
    Dave Rooney

    Dave Rooney - How Thin is Thin? A Practical User Story Workshop

    schedule 10:45 AM - 12:15 PM place Hands-on learning (MXI Room)

    Most of us have heard the mantra, "Slice your User Stories as thin as possible!" In my travels as a coach since the early 2000's, however, I've rarely seen stories that truly are thin. What are these rare creatures? Why don't I see more of them? Having good User Stories is crucial to the success of teams using them as the means for determining what needs to be built to fulfill a customer's need. Having thinly sliced stories is even more important!

    This workshop provides a level set on what stories are and explores why slicing stories very thin is important, what benefits thin slicing provides, and how to do it. Through a combination of examples and practical application in the workshop, you'll leave with slicing techniques that you can apply at your next planning session.

  • Added to My Schedule
    Caroline Sauve

    Caroline Sauve / Mike Lowery - Working Through Stressful Conflict - Workshop

    schedule 10:45 AM - 12:15 PM place Agile in Government (Scrum Alliance Room)

    As coaches, managers, or team members - we've all encountered situations in the workplace where a conversation moves from "constructive conflict" to "stressful conflict". In this workshop, we'll begin by exploring what the differences are between constructive and stressful conflict and establish the different behaviours that can bring forth these stressful interactions. We'll then quickly move into a series of practice exercises and facilitation techniques to help participants support a more healthy interaction both one-on-one and on the team.

  • Added to My Schedule
    Jesus Mendez

    Jesus Mendez - Behind the scenes of retrospectives

    schedule 10:45 AM - 12:15 PM place More hands-on learning (Pyxis Room)

    Ben Linders said: "if you want to solve the problems that you are having, and deliver more value to your customers, you have to change the way you do your work. That is why agile promotes the usage of retrospectives: To help teams to solve problems and improve themselves!" 

    In this workshop I will walk you through the reasons, concepts, phases, tips and tricks of agile retrospectives and everything that happen behind the scenes. We'll share the space and learn together how to make this event a great one in a practical, engaging, fun and interactive manner.

    Are you ready for the challenge?  



    Lunch Break - 45 mins


    Keynote 2: Leading with imperfect feet - Dave Dame - 45 mins


    Break - 15 mins

  • Added to My Schedule
    Sue Johnston

    Sue Johnston - The Geek's Guide to People - Shifting from Output to Impact

    schedule 02:00 PM - 02:45 PM place Leadership and people (Agile Pain Relief Room)

    The stereotype of technical professionals as inarticulate, socially inept geniuses inventing problems to solve is unkind and inaccurate. Yet the Dilbert image persists. So do jokes like the one about the engineer sentenced to death on the guillotine, who watches the instrument of death malfunction, then tells the operators how to fix it.

    Why do people make fun of engineers and those with their mindset? Do people wired and trained to analyze and solve problems and focus on the mechanics of a situation frustrate those whose brains are wired differently? And how does the engineer’s way of dealing with individuals and interactions - that first value of the Agile Manifesto - sometimes get in the way of team collaboration and productivity?

    In this interactive session, we'll show a little empathy for engineers and other analytical folk whose neurological wiring makes them seem different from the rest of humanity. We'll also explore how those with the engineering mindset can develop their own empathy and consciously adopt behaviours that amplify their value to their teams and organizations, make them more effective leaders - and make their own lives easier by positioning themselves for understanding.

    Join Sue in a lively exploration of what can happen when engineers and technical professionals shift their mindset from solving problems to creating impact.
    You will leave this session with an appreciation of:

    • How to make your ideas meaningful to others by taking their perspective
    • How shifting your language from "What?" to "So What?" helps people connect the dots
    • Why giving up the need to be smart may be the smartest thing you ever do
    • Techniques you can use to take someone else's perspective.
  • Added to My Schedule
    Rick Koeller

    Rick Koeller - Agile in a multi-faceted business environment

    schedule 02:00 PM - 02:45 PM place Technical skills and practices (Neuland Room)

    An overview of Agile across a multi-faceted organization

    The Canadian Internet Registration Authority is the not-for-profit organization that is responsible for the development and management of .CA for all Canadians. 


    CIRA is undergoing transformation in the face of market change and deregulation of the Internet’s Top Level Domains.  The organization is introducing new products and services using the Agile framework in the face of a changing market.  While Agile is highly flexible and suitable for product and service development it can both align and conflict with traditional corporate planning processes.  The presentation will discuss the points of alignment and friction between corporate structure, planning processes and iterative Agile planning.  We will examine how various teams have adopted Agile and will highlight the complexities of multi-team adoption of Agile.


  • Added to My Schedule

    Cherifa - Agile Requirements@Scale: Achieving a balance between compliance /governance and agility

    schedule 02:00 PM - 02:45 PM place Scaling Agile (Halogen Room)

    You can earn CDUs...

    "We have reached an impasse because of our regulations and current governance and cannot accelerate our agile adoption” " Does this sound like a common issue? Government, large and product-centric enterprises in aerospace, and automotive, are striving for more agility in their solution delivery. However, those organizations are bound with heavy governance, are stuck on how to comply with their regulations and at the same time being agile. Compliance is generally perceived in the software community as a way to evaluate solution delivery process from a formal and document-based perspective and many argue that Compliance/Governance and AGILE are just not compatible. The motivation of this presentation is to dispel this myth.

    Compliance is one of the scaling factor that makes agile practices more complex to adopt. However it is possible to find a balance. What is needed is a different approach, one that leverages agile and lean techniques to make Agile Requirements Definition and Management practices more scalable.

    • -Should you capture requirements up front or iteratively throughout the project?
    • Should you write detailed specifications as interpreted by some audit officers, light weight specifications, or something in between?
    • Should you take  a use-case driven approach, a user story driven approach, or something else? 

    Do agile requirements strategies really work? Do they scale?  Come listen /meet with the speaker who have a  long experiences around what really works in practice.

    In this presentation, we will discuss strategies for the balancing act between governance and agile.

  • Added to My Schedule
    Melanie Paquette

    Melanie Paquette - Using team kickoffs as a tool to make Scrum more effective

    schedule 02:00 PM - 02:45 PM place Hands-on learning (MXI Room)

    Scrum is a team sport.  We ask people to work closely together in small teams to achieve a common goal.  A significant failing in many Scrum teams I've worked with has been the team's inability to function as team -- they tend to function as a collection of individuals, focused on their individual goals first, and the team's goals second.  

    We have a tendency to put people together in teams and expect them to figure out how to work together and become effective very quickly, but we don't give them the tools to get started as a team, and move towards working together as team.  In this session, we'll explore how to use a team kickoff to accelerate the process of team formation.

  • Added to My Schedule

    Ken McMillan, PMP, CISSP, ITIL, MIPIS, PCIP - A Federal Government Shared Service Success Story:

    schedule 02:00 PM - 02:45 PM place Agile in Government (Scrum Alliance Room)

    Phoenix, the federal government’s pay modernization initiative, aptly illustrates the federal government’s challenges with successfully deploying shared services. Phoenix, Shared Travel Services, and the Government of Canada Marketplace demonstrate that traditional waterfall project management coupled with an excessive emphasis on specifications can exacerbate risk and produce less-than-ideal results.

    On schedule and on budget, began hosting the Government Electronic Tendering Services on June 1 2013. The shared services offered on help more than 80,000 private sector suppliers and buyers representing more than 90 federal departments and agencies to focus on doing business, instead of figuring out how to do business. hosts more than 1 million page views per month. constitutes a series of successful transformation projects. These projects are a possible template for transforming government services to citizens. However, in the case, leading stakeholders never considered transformation their goal and at no time was their work managed as a transformation project. is the result of an iterative process of discovery. The team asked open questions and was open to all possible answers. They eschewed traditional requirements definition and delivered incremental improvements guided by a strategic intent: to improve the user experience of tender management. By allowing tender creators and consumers to validate the improvements via real systems, and by accepting a long-term process of continued short-term iteration, a transformed system was made operational. That system is built upon loosely coupled foundation (platform) components that can be added to in order to deliver additional services without impacting itself.

    While this approach remains unfamiliar to many in the federal government, it is based upon Agile methodologies widely used in the private sector. These techniques present a lower risk than the waterfall project management approach (the National Project Management System) traditionally use for federal government projects.

    This presentation summarizes key Lessons Learned in the conception, design, implementation, and delivery of It references best Agile practices in relation to its achievements.

  • Added to My Schedule
    Sriram Natesan

    Sriram Natesan - Adaptive Planning using Impact Mapping

    schedule 02:00 PM - 02:45 PM place More hands-on learning (Pyxis Room)

    Have you ever felt you don't quite understand WHY you work on things that you do and HOW it actually supports your business' goals?

    Most (if not all) of us might agree that creating a shared understanding of the vision and goals is critical to success of the organization. But how do we do it?

    From my experience coaching numerous Product Owners and Product Managers over the years is that many of them struggle with creating or articulating the business goals and how each of their product increments support them. It turned out that some of them were just taking marching orders from the powers that be, they didn't know for themselves and their teams are in the dark as well. This challenge is amplified by lack of defining and communicating the measures of success needed to validate if the product increment is indeed contributing to your business objectives.

    These factors make it hard to answer questions like "should we start working on this?" or "should we continue working on that?".

    Fortunately, a technique like Impact Mapping helps overcome this challenge. Impact Mapping is a simple but powerful way of visualizing the mapping of the business goals or objectives down to the product increments that teams work on. It is a great tool that lends well to having meaningful dialogues between business, technology and other stakeholders, and most importantly useful for adaptive planning of what gets worked on or should be stopped.

    In this session, I will share what Impact Mapping is and how you can go about creating one. By the end of the session, you should have picked enough knowledge  so you can try creating at your work or if anything add it to your tool kit.


    Break - 15 mins

  • schedule 03:00 PM - 03:45 PM place Leadership and people (Agile Pain Relief Room)

    In this interactive session, we’ll explore how each of us views the world differently and how our perception is shaped by everything we've previously experienced. Through magic, illusions, and an interactive exercise, Jeff reveals the ways our perceptions and biases influence our reality and how our individual realities are unique.

    Discovering your distinct personal perspective by understanding how biases impact how we make sense of the world around us, we can learn to better understand others. We can gain insights which inform our interactions with customers, colleagues, and competitors.

    You'll leave this session with an appreciation for working with others, and approaches to team problem solving in our complex world. No magic spells required.

  • Added to My Schedule
    Chris Murman

    Chris Murman - Things Are Broken: A Case Study In Moving Tooooooooo Fast

    schedule 03:00 PM - 03:45 PM place Technical skills and practices (Neuland Room)

    “Move fast and break things.” — Mark Zuckerberg

    Mobile is no longer a hobby for companies. In that world, speed is the key. My company embraced the principle of “welcoming changing requirements, even late in development.” It’s allowed us to grow, and we have accomplished some amazing things.

    It’s also caused some challenges for teams. They felt the pain of this pace, and our clients were frustrated by delayed releases.

    This presentation describes a 3-month case study I ran to measure things like team communication, productivity, and quality while implementing Scrum for the first time. The results were convincing, and allowed us to learn what happens when you value speed more than anything else.

    I hope you’ll join me in seeing how we learned to work smarter instead of harder.

  • Added to My Schedule
    Patricia Kong

    Patricia Kong - Scale, the most hyped term today, but really, how do you scale successfully?

    schedule 03:00 PM - 03:45 PM place Scaling Agile (Halogen Room)

    Scrum is everywhere, with over 90% of agile teams using it. But for many organizations wanting to scale agile, one team using Scrum is not enough. Scrum is not enough. The Nexus Framework, created by Ken Schwaber the co-creator of Scrum, provides an exoskeleton to Scrum, allowing multiple teams to work together to produce an integrated increment regularly. It addresses the key challenges of scaling agile development by adding new yet minimal events, artifacts and roles to the Scrum framework. 

    In this talk, we introduce the Nexus Framework and how it, like Scrum, promotes bottom-up thinking with top down support in order to discover and emerge what works best for your organization. We will use case studies as examples to describe Nexus in detail showing how it works, how it is working, and what its strengths and weaknesses are. The audience will be taken through Nexus, its new events and the key role of the Nexus Integration Team.

  • Added to My Schedule
    Chris Fenwick

    Chris Fenwick - Behaviour Driven Requirements and Testing at Halogen Software

    schedule 03:00 PM - 03:45 PM place Hands-on learning (MXI Room)

    Behaviour Driven Development (BDD) aims to refine and enhance the Agile development practice of Test Driven Development. This session relates the ongoing story of Halogen Software's BDD initiative. 

    As part of Halogen Software's move to more agile software development, we adopted BDD techniques to improve how we gather and record requirements, manage our development work, and automate testing. 

    I will describe our journey and the lessons I've learned about introducing BDD practices into a software development shop.

  • Added to My Schedule
    Jade Stephen

    Jade Stephen / Samantha Lightowler - From dysfunction to cross-function in 8,593 easy steps: Team building at the CBC

    schedule 03:00 PM - 03:45 PM place Agile in Government (Scrum Alliance Room)

    When it comes to scaling Agile, there is no one size fits all solution. Frameworks like Scrum and XP prescribe roles, events, artifacts, and rules that make it very clear how interaction should take place within a team. When we begin to add more teams to the mix, communication between teams becomes more complex. This complexity threatens to reduce our transparency and damage our culture. How can we share information, build our culture and work together, all while keeping with Agile values?

    During this session Sam Lightowler and Jade Stephen will take an in depth look at the successes and failures of CBC Digital Operations when it comes to cross-team collaboration and information sharing. We will discuss what meetings and techniques have helped us build a one-team-one-product mindset, a sense of community, and a culture of Collaboration, Learning and Improvement. We will also discuss what we have tried in the past and how learning from those experiments helped us evolve into the agile-friendly and unified team that we are today.

  • Added to My Schedule
    Maurizio Mancini

    Maurizio Mancini / Martin Lapointe - How to Reboot your Agile Team: The Secret Sauce!

    schedule 03:00 PM - 03:45 PM place More hands-on learning (Pyxis Room)

    Why do so many organizations struggle to put in place mature Agile teams that can apply proper Agile principles and deliver awesome products? Some people will say, “Agile is hard” as an excuse to not do Agile or to become frAgile. Well we think we have developed the “Secret Sauce” to rebooting any Agile team that just doesn’t seem to be maturing and we want to share it with you!

    If you are thinking of scaling Agile across a large organization, then this talk is a must to attend to help ensure your teams have the right foundation. Organizations wanting to scale Agile must have a solid foundation of mature Agile teams who embrace the Agile values and have the right Agile mindset.

    Over the years, as we have done Agile transformations in different organizations, we have seen common patterns that keep repeating. The most common pattern we found in our experience is that teams are frAgile. Too many either pretend to be Agile or don’t even know Agile is not a methodology, so organizations question the value of using Agile. Very often the confusion and frustration that comes with thinking that a team is Agile when they are not Agile, brings people right back to their old habits of command and control. Creating successful mature Agile teams is not sorcery, you need to discover the secret sauce!

    In this talk, we will reveal our secrets on how to create a successful Agile-Scrum team in 5 sprints. Attendees will learn how we applied our secret sauce as we experimented with more than 30 teams and we refined the know-how. This recipe has proven to be successful in different organizations and teams delivering different types of products. Our Creative-Destruction approach goes through a human change process we labeled The Intervention Plan. The 5 steps are:

    • Step 1: Run in the rain
    • Step 2: Thunderstruck
    • Step 3: Cry over the M&M’s machine
    • Step 4: Open-up and look at the sun
    • Step 5: Removing the training wheels

    And by using these 5 steps, attendees will discover the 5th Agile value!


    Break - 15 mins


    Keynote 3: The Power of Play: Transforming Agile Teams - Laura Powers - 45 mins


    Lightning talks - 15 mins


    Closing and overtime! - 30 mins