Author Archives: markkilby

Lean Coffee notes May31

Again, great conversations on scrum vs kanban vs scrumban, motivating your teams, who is your real client and bad product ownership. Wish we had gotten to talk about agile in game dev. I wanted to find out if some folks knew about Clinton Keith and his book Agile Game Development with Scrum…

Other topics we mentioned Dan Pink’s Drive which you can see links to the book and two great 10min videos here:…

I’ll do some more research on Scrumban to see what is the latest info.

Lean Coffee notes May03


(1) How do you approach Agile Adoptions? Grass-roots/Bottom-up? Top down through management? Other ways? What are best ways to start?

(2) Release Planning – what are some best approaches to breaking down Epics to Features to Stories and keeping track of the big picture? Where does MMF and MVP come into play? How do you “validate” the epics using acceptance criteria, conversations on ROI of the Epic, or using tools like Innovation Games (see for descriptions and even some online versions)

(3) Scrum vs Kanban (vs Scrumban) – what’s the difference? Where is one better than another? What and when would you transition from one framework to another? How might it work for Systems Integration? How do spikes play in Kanban?

(4) Walking Skeleton for Architecture? What is needed to make this work? How do you use the walking skeleton concept to safely explore alternatives? What infrastructure do you need such as continuous integration, TDD, etc?


Lean Coffee Notes Apr05

Great discussions this past Friday. We started with discussing starting agile teams, agile assessments, and challenges in product ownership. We then talked about “agile as an excuse” to wait until the last minute. This is a case where some folks don’t understand the discipline that agile introduces and instead look at agile as an excuse to drop disciplines instead of adding new ones. Lots of other great topics which I wish we had gotten to discuss.

Activities for Agile Orlando was a topic that we didn’t have time to get into, but it looks like folks were interested in a follow-on discussion over lunch. If you are interested in the outcomes, keep an eye on

There were some topics that we didn’t get to Friday such as “using agile in the role of Testing”, to Document or not, and “agile during downturns”. If you still have interest in those topics and don’t want to wait until the next Lean Coffee, feel free to post your question in the Discussions area of the meetup group.


Lean Coffee notes Mar15

Another awesome Lean Coffee this morning. Topics include: Sprint0/Architecture/Starting an agile project, Technical Debt and best ways to make visible, and synergies between agile and lean. Next one might be in 2 weeks (if I can get someone else to facilitate) or in 3 weeks. Also, I will post some information on set-based design and sources for agile-lean videos in the Discussions area of this group. Looking forward to the next one!

Some references:

Video (45min) overview of Set-Based Decision Making at the 2012 Lean Software and Systems Conference

Blog post giving a recap of the above talk

1999 article (MIT Sloane Review) going through details of set-based design

Lean Coffee notes Feb28

We had a record number of attendees this morning and a record number of topics: Agile and Deployment (aka Scrum or Kanban or hybrid?), Agile Testing and TDD techniques in particular, how to handle stories vs bugs in your backlog, rebooting Agile Orlando (it will happen!), and a little about introducing agile/kanban to your team.

Since we had a large group, there were some concerns about how well the format will work in the future. Some options: if we have 12 or more, we can split into 2 tables; if we have 15 or more on a regular basis, we might consider spinning off other lean coffees in other locations to attract other folks in different parts of town (that would be cool)

Some were also asking about upcoming training. Take a look at upcoming Orlando/Tampa courses at…

Looks like a bunch coming in April and May and I know most of the instructors. Looking forward to next time in 2 weeks!

Some topics that didn’t get voted up this time: role of automation (we discussed briefly as part of the test topic), next big agile opportunity in Orlando (we have folks looking for work), learning agile/lean (look for some upcoming opportunities at and the paleolithic diet — yes, it a lean technique 😉

Just because we didn’t get to them this time, you can certainly bring them up at the next agile-lean coffee orlando!