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Troy Daniel
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The Mosaic Bowling Team
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Giving Direction vs. Self-Organization

In today's Agile world of software development, self-organization is sometimes misunderstood to include self-direction.  Very few teams can be truly self-directed and require the direction of some kind of stakeholder.   Providing clear direction however, need not interfere with self-organization.  By providing strategic intent that focuses on the "What+Why" teams can be freed to implement around the "How".  

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Jurgen is my modern-day management hero. I love what he has to say about all things management.

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Big Ego's and Star Trek

Transactional Analysis is a very accessible theory of modern psychology. It's been a great tool to learn how engage in "Adult-to-Adult" conversations.  

Special thanks to +Greg Witz  and his team for introducing me to Transactional analysis at a Witz Education leadership course (  

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Whispering Wednesdays

Our department recently moved to a large open space without cubicles.  We've been given large tables, chairs, whiteboards and a beautiful 8th floor view of the Toronto airport.

It's been an experiment in creating better face-to-face collaboration and increased productivity. For the most part we're happy with the move.

There have been occasions where individuals have wanted to have a quiet space to focus and get work done.  Our new office space was not conducive to a quiet and focused space.

Driving to work, I'd listened to Jason Fried in an interview on the CBC.

He spoke about how the modern workplace does not support getting work done. (Jason Fried is the co-founder of 37 signals and the author of the book "Rework").

We decided to experiment ourselves by creating a "Whispering Wednesday" on the first Wednesday of the 2 week sprint.

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My Management Experiment - where do I start?

An overview of 3 books that have provided me some practical tools to experiment while learning how to manage a contemporary software development team.

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Design Tomorrow
Jonathan Ive Talks About Steve Jobs and New Products

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Summary from Forbes article

1. Speak to people in the language they understand.
“In my experience, communication is a matter of patience and imagination. I would like to believe that these are qualities that we have in sufficient measure.”

2. When you’re overwhelmed, ask for help.
“You wanted to frighten us. We’re frightened. You wanted to show us we were inadequate. For the moment, I grant that. You wanted me to say ‘I need you.’? I NEED you!”

3. Always value ethical actions over expedient ones.
“There are times, sir, when men of good conscience cannot blindly follow orders.”

4. Challenge your team to help them grow.
“Lieutenant, you are a member of this crew, and you will not go into hiding whenever a Klingon vessel uncloaks!”

5. Don’t play it safe – seize opportunities in front of you.
“Seize the time… – live now! Make now always the most precious time. Now will never come again.”
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