Bonus Track (K) 2015
Bonus Track (K)

Session type: Bonus

Agile Teams – Synopsis & Biographies 2015

teamAgile Teams and Leadership – 2 day track with 10 sessions


  • #No Projects – Teams not Projects – Allan Kelly
  • Delivering governance for agile services in Government, in an agile way – James Ashton        Government Digital Service (GDS)
  • The Open Agile Profiling System  – Craig Girvan & Toby Parkins    Headforwards
  • Scrum…Really – Amy Thompson         Agilista Systems
  • This is agile? – Letitia Fearon – Lloyds of London
  • Herding Creative Cats – Andy Bartlett      Worlds Apart


  • The Magellan Project     Ricardo Mestre        Nokia, Germany
  • The Geek’s Guide to Leading Teams – Patrick Kua        ThoughtWorks
  • Creating the next generation of software developers – Mike Trebilcock – Cornwall College
  • Management 3.0 – a leadership framework for leaders of today – Pia-Maria Thoren
  • Working Remotely in a Global Team – Olly Brand        IBM UK Ltd


IMG_0134#No Projects – Teams not Projects

Allan Kelly @allankellynet

#NoProjects – Teams Over Projects

Good projects make for bad software. Software which is useful is used and demands change, stop changing it and you kill it.

In a world without projects how do you manage work? The answer is teams. Teams are the means of production, work should be based around teams and teams should be stable.

In this talk Allan Kelly will outline the #NoProjects agenda and discuss the role of teams as the unit of production and the team life cycle.
Allan Kelly advises teams from many different companies and domains on adopting and deepening Agile practices and development in general. He specialises in working with software product companies and aligning products and processes with company strategy. When he is not with clients he writes far too much.

He is the author of three books: “Xanpan – team centric Agile Software Development” (, “Business Patterns for Software Developers” and “Changing Software Development: Learning to be Agile”; the originator of Retrospective Dialogue Sheets ( and a regular conference speaker. He can be found on Twitter as @allankellynet ( and blogs (


jamesashdonnewDelivering governance for agile services in Government, in an agile way

James Ashton        Government Digital Service (GDS)


Do you want to gain the benefits of agile delivery, but you aren’t in a software team? Do you have a wide set of stakeholders, who hold strong and competing opinions and needs?

Would you like to know how someone has navigated this? Delivering iteratively, with quality built in, meeting user needs and driving change in wider government?

I’d like to tell you about how we at the Government Digital Service did this, delivering the Government’s guidance on how to govern digital services

When you are working in a new area with lots of competing opinions and voices how do you identify what to work on and then iterate around, making sure it meets user needs? But it isn’t software and doesn’t have some of the familiar feedback mechanisms of software development? While also it has to be authoritative and bring people along with you on the journey of change needed?

At GDS I was the delivery manager for the team that produced the guidance for governing digital services. I’d like to tell you about this work, why it is important and why us working in this way was novel and the lessons we learnt from it.

● The benefits of involving, product managers, user researchers, subject matter experts, designers and content designers in an non-software agile delivery team
● How to gather input from a wide and diverse range of stakeholders and build that into your delivery cadence
● How to iterate a process for generating guidance that meets the team’s and users’ needs
● How to approach changing attitudes to governance and delivery in large public sector organisations
● The things that went wrong and what you should avoid!”

James Ashton :  I am delivery manager at the Government Digital Service, where I’ve worked on the governance for service delivery, assisted digital and digital inclusion teams. Prior to that I had a brief sojourn as a generalist civil servant in the Cabinet Office, however, the bulk the of my career was spent at Macmillan Publishers covering a number of publishing and project management roles, including an agile project manager for



craigtobyhf_full300The Open Agile Profiling System

Craig Girvan & Toby Parkins    Headforwards Ltd    


Headforwards has developed an Agile Profiling system that can be used to assess and review an organizations agility across multiple departmental areas. Often a recognized or certified solution is adopted as it can be identified and officially approved. This approach doesn’t necessarily bring the correct mindset and philosophy into the organization.  This Agile Profiling system provides a framework to allow an organization to assess its progress in becoming more Agile.    

Through Agile consultancy that Headforwards have carried out we have developed an Agile Profiling system that practioners can use to assess and review an organizations agility across multiple departmental areas. We have observed that larger organizations in particular find adopting Agile particularly challenging for a number of reasons. Often a recognized or certified solution is adopted as it can be identified and officially approved. This approach doesn’t necessarily bring the correct mindset and philosophy into the organization. This Agile Profiling system provides a framework to allow an organization to assess its progress in becoming more Agile, without the inflexibility of a certified system. The aim of this talk is to share the system making it open source and thus allow others to utilize it, contribute to it, and to benefit from it.

Craig and Toby founded Headforwards in 2011 as an alternative outsourcing option for companies looking for better software development. They are currently engaged with NTT and AXA PPP Healthcare as well as some startup businesses.




Amy Thompson


Scrum has long been the most popular of the Agile approaches for software development. But what is Scrum really about? What does a great Scrum team look like? Is Scrum really the flexible, free-spirited collection of ‘frameworks’ that are so often believed to be able to be tailored to suit what works for us? In our attempts to be ‘Agile’, have we forgotten the benefits of structure and discipline? Do we bend Scrum too much to suit us, and what is the impact of this?

I’ve worked with many Scrum and Kanban teams, including those that sit within a heavier Agile methodology such as SAFe and RUP as well as those working in isolation of a surrounding Waterfall organisation. However, every time I work somewhere new I see the same problems over and over again that contribute to teams failing to meet their potential to be high performing. The same applies when I visit Agile meetings and conferences and talk to people about how they have tried to ‘go Agile’, but it doesn’t seem to be working for them.
Recently, I have seen a growing trend in Agile professionals coming to the conclusion that a more evangelistic approach is more likely to bring success to Businesses and teams. Management buy in is essential, however I’d like to focus my discussion on why I believe discipline, routine, structure and a thorough understanding of the Scrum process is key to a great Scrum team, and also explain that this doesn’t mean the team are stifled creatively, nor are their environments controlling, it’s actually quite the opposite…

Also known as ‘The ScrumMistress’, Amy is an independent Agile Coach, blogger and strategist specialising in the implementation of Scrum and Kanban to organisations.  Coming from a traditional Release Management and Project Management background, Amy’s switch to Agile soon saw her become winner of the Best Agile Coach/Mentor at the 2013 Agile Awards for her work transitioning thebigword in Leeds to Agile.  Amy’s passion lies in helping teams meet their potential and she is on a continuing mission to discover new ways of getting the best out of those she coaches.   Amy’s other passions include the British countryside,  equestrian sports and driving Land Rovers on bumpy roads.





letitiaThis is agile?

Letitia Fearon  @letitia_fearon

How many times have you been told that you will be working on an agile project but when you start this doesn’t seem to be the case. Sometimes all the scrum ceremonies are in place but it just doesn’t feel particularly agile.

In this talk we’ll take a look at what agile is, why you would want to run a project using it and the pros and cons of doing so.

Has agile lost its original meaning and just become a buzz word? Is it no longer possible to solve the problem it was intended to, due to the way people are trying to implement these techniques? If you are currently working on an agile project, we’ll look at what can you can do to improve things or change the way the team is working. I will demonstrate different ways of achieving this.

This talk will focus on how a team can make a difference to the way projects are delivered and how can you work together to create a happier, more productive team.

Speaker Biography
I’m a Business Analyst based in London. I started out working in the pharmaceutical industry, shadowing scientists, observing both the time spent in the labs and the analysis phase and then working with them to optimise processes, at times using an IT solution and at others a change in their practice. These improvements always focused on reducing the time required, without impacting the quality of the output. When I helped, for example, with the analysis of an experiment that took five days to complete and reduced the time it took down to a single day, it made me realise how much I liked enabling people to get back doing the part of their job they enjoy the most.

This realisation led me into the world of consultancy where I’ve helped a variety of companies (from start-ups to the more traditional organisations) over a range of industries (including pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, public sector, publishing, construction and financial services). Each company may have similar issues but there is no single solution that will solve the problem in every case. There needs to be an understanding of the individual team and culture, so we can work together and tailor the approach.

My role as a Business Analyst focuses on helping individuals, teams and organisations work effectively with Agile techniques, using Scrum, Lean or Kanban. I don’t see Agile as a change management solution but rather a way to focus on optimising the way the team works together to deliver a solution. I am currently working at Lloyds of London with a team of Business Analysts looking at the different techniques that can be used.



andybartlettHerding Creative Cats
Andy Bartlett        Worlds Apart Ltd

How the Agile toolkit helped to shape and build our creative design processes, and how our fun and visual take on it helped us to herd our 20 strong team of creative cats.   

With a 10 year period of sustained growth, a rapidly changing toy market and a bunch of demanding licensors such as Disney, Marvel and Pixar, things in the design studio can get pretty hectic. Processes that once did the job, can quickly become outdated and cumbersome, hindering not helping the flow of the creative juices.
If you mix in with that a bunch of designers whose natural tendency is to kick and scream all the way to the next planning meeting, then you have a heady cocktail for stress, inefficiency and an unhappy team.
I’d like to share our experiences with Agile and how we took the tools and played with them (well we are toy designers after all). With this we then developed new systems and processes (and polished our old ones), allowing us to not just stop drowning, but also improve team happiness by 20% in the first 12 months.

The presentation will be based on how Agile influenced:

  • Visualisation of workflow
  • Workspaces
  • Organisation of project teams
  • Communication

Andy Bartlett is Head of Product Design @ Worlds Apart via Xerox and Panasonic




Ricardo MestreThe Magellan Project

 Ricardo Mestre        Nokia, Germany  


We will focus on the transition of a 40 people team (responsible for the development of the map) inside Nokia from a mature traditional Agile implementation (Scrum and Kanban) into a bottom-up driven product innovation process, where teams are highly self-organised.  

This was only possible due to the maturity of the engineering practices within this group, namely: unit tests, acceptance tests and continuous deployment.

After version 1.0 was released, our Management decided to try a different approach to our ways of working, which lean towards an emphasis on self-organization and team empowerment.

In order for such a high level of self-organization generate a Product that fulfills the Product Vision, it needs to be guided by some boundaries defined by Management. This principle is embedded in several principles (that defined our ways of working) – during the talk we will walkthrough those principles:
– team ownership
– measurable and time-boxed projects
– self-organized teams
– work how you want but know where you are
– review, don’t specify
– done means done
– end to end

Included is also the format of the regular reviews with Management, as well as the Lessons Learned and actions taken to improve our performance using these new ways of working.

Ricardo Mestre is an Agile Coach in HERE, a Nokia company. He has 16 years of work experience in Software, in Portugal, Netherlands and Germany.
He is an Agile Practitioner since 2007 – started with Scrum, later added Kanban to his toolset, and is now on a daily journey to become a better Agile Coach everyday.
He has worked in several different contexts – from a 10-people startup up to Microsoft.


OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe Geek’s Guide to Leading Teams

Patrick Kua        ThoughtWorks  


The most challenging aspects to software development are always the people issues. Picking the right data structures, finding the right testing approaches are simple compared to building an effective software team. Most organisations fail to support developer promoted into technical leadership roles so where do you go to uncover the secret skills behind this important role. Come along to this session to discover practical tips for leading technical teams.   

In this talk, we will uncover a number of key principles and useful tools to help you better skills as a Geek who leads teams.

Patrick Kua is an author, speaker and consultant who still finds time to code. He works as an active, generalising specialist at ThoughtWorks and dislikes being put into a box. He is often found leading technical teams, coaching people and organisations in lean and agile methods, sometimes facilitating situations beyond adversity. Patrick is fascinated by elements of learning and continuous improvement, always helping others to develop an enthusiasm for the same.

Patrick Kua has published both “The Retrospective Handbook: A guide for agile teams” and most recently,  Talking with Tech Leads: From Novices to Practitioners .



CC with Group underneath (3)Creating the next generation of Software Developers – Mike Trebilcock Cornwall College

Find out about the exciting developments in Cornwall to improve the talent pool of skilled developers in the county.  We should have live demos, children, maybe robots and a bit of teleportation – what could possibly go wrong? It’ll be worth watching just to see if we can pull it off!


piaPia-Maria Thoren        GreenBullet
Management 3.0 – a leadership framework for leaders of today
@piamia2           Interactive workshop (no computer)

We believe management is not only the manager’s responsibility. It’s everyone’s job! Leaders need to create organizations that are great places to work for, where people are engaged, and clients are delighted. Pia-Maria (who is a licensed facilitator in Mgmt 3.0) will guide you through the highlights of Management 3.0 and we will also play  Delegation Poker  – a practical game where it becomes clear who should make what decision.    “What is the definition of leadership? Can anyone be a leader? Can anyone manage a team? We believe management is not only the manager’s responsibility. It’s everyone’s job! Leadership pursues the goal of growing and transforming organizations that are great places to work for, where people are engaged, the work is improved and clients are simply delighted.
 In this session, Pia-Maria (who is a licensed facilitator in Management 3.0) will guide you through the basics and highlights of Management 3.0 and we will also play  Delegation Poker  – a practical game where it becomes clear who should make what decision.

What is Management 3.0?
We’ve realized that almost every industry is ripe for change and ready for a new view on management. Management 3.0 is that future of management.
Management 3.0 is a movement of innovation, leadership and management. Management 3.0 is about defining leadership and management as a group responsibility. It’s about working together to find the most efficient way for a business to achieve its goals while maintaining the happiness of its workers as a priority.
Management 3.0 is a global management revolution that brings together thousands of project managers, mid-level managers, CEOs and entrepreneurs, developing solutions together, using games to encourage employee feedback and team collaboration.
You don’t want theories and soft management science, you want hands-on approaches that can become solutions for increasing employee engagement and improving results. You want to build a future. Management 3.0 is the future of management.

Pia-Maria Thoren is an Agile People Coach and facilitator of Management 3.0. She runs a consulting firm in Sweden with a few dedicated employees and customers ranging from 30 – 60 000 employees. GreenBullet specialize in solutions for Agile HR, Agile Leadership and Talent Management. She has worked as a consultant with many of Sweden’s largest companies, helping them to implement Talent management processes and solutions, always spiced with an agile mindset. She is a People management consultant and devoted change agent with an enterprise perspective. Her main focus is to contribute to creating organizations where people perform better and feel engaged. Agile leadership and agile frameworks are the best ways to create successful change, in her opinion. Her main drive is to see the movement from one state to another in a company, contributing by making that change successful both from a financial and human perspective. Her vision is to create customer value and have fun at the same time!

Special focus areas: Management 3.0, Performance management, Employee engagement, Talent management, project / program management, change management, agile leadership & HR, workshop facilitation, IT support for HR and Talent Management”


ollybrandWorking Remotely in a Global Team

Olly Brand        IBM UK Ltd    


The story of how adopting Agile practices helped me work remotely from Cornwall as part of a global team at IBM. Lessons learnt on our journey adopting Agile. How we use Agile methods to deliver across different time zones, working in a global market place. Including the many benefits of being in Cornwall, or free to work independently of location (but seriously… why wouldn’t that be Cornwall?).   

Case study of returning home to work for IBM from Cornwall, and how my geographically diverse team adopted Agile. Covering lessons learned from both working remotely and adopting Agile.

In a world that requires us to be in more than two places at once. Where physics, budget, life, time, travel bans and other factors conspire to keep us in one, and not always the correct one. What can we do? How Agile helped me, and how remote working doesn’t mean sitting at home in your pants (most of the time).

* The story of how I became free to work remotely
* Remote working fears
* Remote working skills / lessons learnt to date
* How Agile and SCRUM work remotely for us
* Agile Fluency
* Working in a team spread across different time zones
* My Agile paradox of tools enabling me to value people more
* Other things that worked for us
* The Future, Kaizen”

Olly Brand – Technology consultant and IBMer: specialising in the design, build and run of Business Intelligence and Data Warehousing projects. Performing roles such as: Technical lead, project manager and consultant. Working on both public and private sector projects. Implementing best practices, effectively using global delivery and consistently delivering Business Intelligence. Adopting Agile and SCRUM methodologies to run geographically diverse teams, with members all over Europe and India. Researched and developed remote working skills. Successfully delivering while living full time in Cornwall.   Coached Remote Working and Agile practices, including being featured in the Times, Guardian, and Financial Times.