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Recent Articles

  • Promoting Working Together With Value Streams

    Mapping your work system’s value stream doesn’t only give you insight into how to reorganize the work, but it also promotes true collaboration by aligning co-workers against a common problem, rather than pitting them against each other.

  • "Being Agile": An Example

    You will read many articles about the difference between “doing Agile” and “being Agile”. For better or worse, I have written another one. Thankfully, I have made it brief.

  • Sooner, Not Faster: Revisited (and Intensified)

    It seems like common belief that “Agile = Faster”. That’s wrong. It seems like common practice to blame the people who have this common-yet-incorrect belief. I don’t think that’s fair. Let’s stop blaming them and instead meet them where they are and move forward.

  • How Does One Start With Unit Tests?

    I have all this web stuff. I want to test it. I don’t know how to start. I think I want to write unit tests. What does that even mean? How do I get started?

  • A Simple Question to Ask About Estimating Tasks

    If you’re going estimate the effort/cost of relatively small tasks, then ask yourself and your group this one simple question before investing time and energy in that work.

  • Better and Cheaper Estimates, If You Must

    I tend to advise groups to stop estimating the cost of small tasks, but if you need to do it, then this advice from How to Measure Anything might help you get much more out of the activity.

  • Breaking Free Of a Damaging Behavioral Pattern

    I’ve been plagued by impatience, leading to annoying outbursts and harmful “venting” of emotional pain. I’ve never liked this behavioral pattern of mine and finally, after years of searching, a few key ideas have found me and they’re helping me break free of this pattern.

  • Remind Yourself To Schedule A Thing

    When practising GTD, it’s sometimes hard to frame a task as an action. If you want to remember to do something, but you’re not prepared to do it just yet, then remind yourself to schedule time to do it.

  • Practical Steps to Delay Burnout

    I have read many articles about avoiding or recovering from burnout. I usually find the advice true, but useless, due to a lack of concrete steps that can help me get started. Here, I try to augment an article that I recently read with the concrete steps I’ve taken and which seem to have helped.

  • Managing the Uncertainty of Legacy Code: Part 5

    How do we commit tiny changes without disrupting everything? And a case study of sorts.

  • Managing the Uncertainty of Legacy Code: Part 4

    You don’t need a test framework to start adding tests to legacy code.

  • Managing the Uncertainty of Legacy Code: Part 3

    Refactoring without tests carries risk, so take it seriously, but don’t let it block you entirely.