Agile: We Are People Team (HR) not SWE

By March 24, 2013 No Comments

The last time I shared information with you, the People Team was just starting out using the project management methodology of Agile.  A few of us were excited, some were nervous but we all agreed that we could not use it exactly as it was laid out for our technical counterparts on the Software Engineering (SWE) side of the wall.

In our initial meeting, I identified a few things that we, as a non-technical team, needed to consider as we ventured to use this new approach to getting things done.

  • Long standups – Our daily standup is meant to be quick and informative. We tend to dig into deeper conversations and try to fix issues then. We have to take those offline.
  • Large tasks that don’t move. – Self-explanatory.
  • Being too optimistic.  – Our mantra is to present options and say “Yes”.  Sometimes we get so excited about the end result that we over estimate what we can get done.  We will fine tune this ability as we go.  It’s okay though.
  • We are HR and not SWE. – We are not going to do things exactly like the software engineers. That’s okay. It’s the framework that will work for us. Everything else we will make our own.

And make it our own we have.  From the length of our sprints (1 week) to what we actually put on our task board (projects only, no day to day tasks). We started off having our sprint planning sessions on Mondays, then realized that day wasn’t the most optimal day for the team. Now we meet on Fridays and plan for the week ahead. We have more discussions during our planning meetings. This is something we did learn from our SWE counterparts. Thanks Childcare team! And on and on…

Below is a clip of a brief conversation from Julie, Sara and Kim, members of the People Team, sharing how they felt and now feel about the use of Agile. Hear what they have to say about it.

Concetta L. is a bean counter turned social butterfly. She loves to laugh, sing, dance and sleep. Just trying to figure out how to do it all at once.

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