Yep you read that right. Agile Program management. Right now I am managing a project that has 5 Scrum teams and a little over 100 people involved including: Developers, Testers, Business people, DBAs , Infrastructure, and more. It can be a little crazy at times but it is a fantastic ride.
One of the challenges is keeping all of the teams in sync and focused on a common goal. Like this Ferris Wheel the project consists of multiple teams often in complete of semi-isolation. Keeping them all spinning around a common hub is a difficult task.
One of the key success factors is having a great team. Ihave a fantastic team of ScrumMaster, Project managers Product owners (yes plural) and team members. and I guess that is the first thing I would recommend. Have a great team. If you don’t have a great team, make them a great team. By and Large my team isn’t very experienced with Agile. This is a challenge, but they are positive and want to get better at the agile, learning and growing. With people who are excited and willing to learn, people who are coachable, you can do anything. As a matter of fact I think I would rather have a team who is willing to mold and work together than a team of experienced agilsts who were used to their own ways and are set in their own approaches.
In future posts I will cover other things we are doing to be successful including:
- Scrum of Scrums
- Joint Planning sessions
- Team specific Retrospectives
- Common Story Card backlog
Are you managing an agile program? What are you doing that works? Or doesn’t? Share your experiences.