Agile Book Club: Optimizing Outcomes

In its full glory, Agile is a world in which teams twirl and dance in response to changing market conditions. They experiment and learn; develop new markets; outmaneuver the competition. In the Agile Fluency Model, this is called Optimizing fluency. In this, our final book club session, Mary and Tom Poppendieck join us to discuss how to achieve it.

Mary and Tom Poppendieck wrote the classic book Lean Software Development in 2003, outlining the application of Lean principles to software engineering. Subsequent books include Implementing Lean Software Development, published in 2006, Leading Lean Software Development in 2009, and The Lean Mindset in 2013. Over the past two decades they have extended these ideas at

πŸ“– Optimizing Outcomes
πŸ“– Autonomy
πŸ“– Discovery
πŸ“– Into the Future

πŸŽ™ Discussion prompts:

  • Optimizing outcomes depends on a truly cross-functional team with a clear purpose and ownership over its business decisions. What does that look like in practice?

  • What does it mean for a team to have financial responsibility, and how can organizations make that work?

  • Feedback and learning is crucial for success, and that requires teams to have a direct connection to their customers and stakeholders. How can teams make the most of that connection?

  • Let’s talk about options. How can teams use options and adaptability to improve their outcomes?

About the Book Club

From October 2021 to August 2022, I hosted a call-in talk show based on the second edition of The Art of Agile Development. The series used the book as a jumping-off point for wide-ranging discussions about Agile ideas and practices, and had a star-studded guest list.

For an archive of past sessions, visit the book club index. For more about the book, visit the Art of Agile Development home page.

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