The Friend Disclosure Agreement (FriendDA) – Love it.

notfriendsI believe that any ‘independent consultant’ or type of individual is an entreprenuer. It takes guts, gumption, and desire to go off on your own and build your own brand and take on all the risk. It’s scary and rewarding at the same time. Like driving 140+mph on a motorcycle. It’s scary but thrilling at the same time (not that I’ve ever done that…).

Entrepreneurs also have great ideas… good entrepreneurs share those ideas with others to get feedback. Sometimes though, you need a bit of a Non Disclosure Agreement to keep things kosher. How about a ‘lite’ version?

Found one.

www.friendda.org – Love it. Perfect for using when you have an idea to share with others. Some highlights (italics mine) below:

FriendDA

This agreement is entered into this ___ day of ___ 20__ by and between _____________ (hereinafter “The Advisor”) and _____________ (hereinafter “The Keeper of the Idea” or “I”) regarding information The Keeper of The Idea is choosing to share with The Advisor (hereinafter “The Idea”).

WHEREAS I possess a bright idea that I am choosing to disclose to you, The Advisor, with the mutual understanding that you are my friend and that you will not screw me.

Manners of screwing include, but are not limited to:

  1. Adapting some or all of The Idea for your own purposes.
  2. Choosing to share some or all of The Idea with those who are not bound to this agreement.
  3. Failing to do your best to protect The Idea.

This is a “warm blanket” agreement with which, by requesting your agreement to it, I am helping myself sleep at night by placing a small amount of formality on the sharing of The Idea. I believe The Idea will only improve as a result of having solicited your honest and clear feedback.

Term

The term of this agreement shall continue until The Idea is no longer confidential.

Breach

This agreement has absolutely no legal binding. However, upon breach or violation of the agreement, I will feel free to do any of the following:

  1. Curse you under my breath.
  2. Publicly disclose the manner of your screw-i-tude.
  3. Write about your transgressions in ALL CAPS.
  4. No longer consider you a person with whom I can share my ideas.

Sharing

Sharing of some or all of The Idea with third parties may occur provided that you have cleared this with me and the third parties agree to the principles of the FriendDA.

Termination

Termination of this FriendDA can be executed by either party, but don’t be a douche.

You are acknowledging and agreeing to this disclosure by reading it. If you find any part of this agreement uncomfortable or confusing, don’t sweat it. We’ll talk about something else.

*lol

Agile Gangnam Style

team-gangnam-style-agile

You know that pop culture … or Korean pop culture has infected the software development world when a team name is “Team Gangnam.”

If you’ve been living under a rock, this video is the most watched Youtube video of all time. WHY is it popular?! I have no freaking clue. Zero.

 

Becoming a Certified Scrum Trainer – CST

[I was recently asked what my journey to become a CST was like. So like an Agile blogger, I told them to wait for it to post on AgileScout.com :) ]

The path to becoming a Certified Scrum Trainer (CST) is one of the most arduous yet rewarding experiences I have ever gone through (and I spent 7 years in Master’s programs!). It has not only stretched me, but brought about a greater understanding of “mastery” of a craft, that, no matter how good you ‘think’ you become at something, you can always improve, become better, learn more, and grow as a person.

The day you stop learning is day you become ineffective in your work.

My CST Journey

I began my journey to becoming a Certified Scrum Trainer back in early 2009 when I began my investigation into the process and started collaborating with other CST’s about co-training opportunities. This was a time when the CST application process was evolving (and still is) and the requirements and application process wasn’t fully fleshed out. I, at the time, had been in my 8th year as an independent Enterprise Agile Coach and felt like the CST was the right way to go. I had completed my Certified ScrumMaster designation and my Certified Scrum Professional designation previously.

In early 2009 I had my first co-training opportunity with a fellow Agile coach. They went very well. I was stoked. I was excited. I had gotten a great review and was given priceless advice on how to become better. I felt like the CST was fast becoming a reality. I flew out to meet my 2nd co-trainer and we trained together. Another great workshop. I felt great… Then:

  • Client work picked up.
  • Timing just wasn’t working out.
  • Work-life balance just wasn’t what it used to be.

A full year later, I still had yet to co-train with other coaches and trainers. My client list was full, my schedule was so tight that it became apparent to me that I may not be able to finish this race due to scheduling conflicts and overall timing not to mention funding from the CFO of my house (wife). I was burnt out, tired, and a bit frustrated.

It was all about the timing. It just didn’t seem to work. So what did I do? I made the tough choice to lighten my client load (OUCH! SCARY!) so I could open up opportunities to co-train. I made the time available, I reached out to friends and fellow Agile coaches for time slots, and I invited Agile coaches to come train with me at my client sites. I patiently prayed that the opportunities would come… and they did.

After a full 3.5 years I completed it… The road to becoming an official CST was complete… but the journey forward has just begun. YES!

[Peter Saddington Training on ScrumMaster Roles]

On Co-Training Continue reading “Becoming a Certified Scrum Trainer – CST”

7th Annual State of Agile with @VersionOne

There’s something about the Lucky Number 7…

It’s Version One’s 7th year conducting the Annual ‘State of Agile Development’ Survey and they are feeling the itch to give away a MacBook Air 11two new iPads and some Amazon gift cards. Might be your lucky day to win!

Just give it 10 minutes of your time to share your experiences with agile. Participants get access to the data before anyone else. These results have delivered valuable insight and agile success to the more than 20,000 software professionals who have taken the survey since its inception.

Don’t miss out! The State of Agile Survey is now open and will run through September. Go to www.AgileDevSurvey.com to participate.

[FREE SWAG? 10 Minutes? I’m down.]

You are Fired Agile Coach

You can’t please everyone. We often hear that sometimes the best career move someone made was a move made for themgetting fired… in turn it jumpstarted their career.

Maybe my career is just getting started.

Maybe, for you, reader… the best thing you can do is make a BIG change. Life is short. Too damn short. Take smart risks. Try the un-tried. Do something fantastic.

[No, I didn’t really get fired, and this email-snippet lacks a lot of context… but yes, my client DID write this…in jest]

Where have YOU needed to make a change… Or what happened? Please share with us!

An Agile Coach Dinner

I recently had a dinner after a long day with a client. I let the steakhouse I was dining at know that I would be ‘shacking’ up for a while. They said “Ok… … …” And so I did.

What was most amazing during this time was that halfway through my lobster and steak dinner a random woman came up to me and asked:

“Hey, are you a ScrumMaster???”

Woah. I was super impressed! Then we had a great conversation. She knew I was doing SOMETHING agile… because of the sticky notes. Duh.

What Project Managers Say and What They Really Mean

WHAT YOUR PM SAYS:

“I’ll check with the team to see if we can squeeze that change into the current release.”

WHAT YOUR PM REALLY MEANS:

“I’ll check to see whether the lead developer will say “no” or “hell no.”

 

WHAT YOUR PM SAYS:

“I think it would be beneficial to streamline the requirements and redefine the user stories.”

WHAT YOUR PM REALLY MEANS:

“These user stories strung together read like the plot of “The Hangover II.”

 

WHAT YOUR PM SAYS:

“This delivery schedule appears to be very aggressive.”

WHAT YOUR PM REALLY MEANS:

“We can meet your timeline if HR will sign off on letting us chain the development staff to their desks and beat them with sticks until the 15th of the month.”

Continue reading “What Project Managers Say and What They Really Mean”

University of Agile Launched – New Certification – Certified Agile Blogger

Agile Blogger Certification - University of Agile
Click for Larger View

University of Agile – Certified Agile Blogger

AgileScout.com is announcing their new premier certification program from the University of Agile.

Atlanta, GA – April 1, 2012 – AGILESCOUT Inc. [NYSE: AGILE] AgileScout.com announces their new certification through the University of Agile, established through accredited university partners Harvard and Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Demand Is Growing for Certified Agile Bloggers
Many project professionals are seeing the demand for Agile bloggers to talk more and blog more about Agile related stuff. Thus we are eager to announce that you can now become a Certified Agile Blogger.

Organizations Are Embracing Agile 

Like a shotgun approach, organizations who use Agile techniques in managing projects have documented the value they see from its practice:

Stop Boring Meetings Fast with a Gun

SpeechJammer is a gun that “jams” people’s speech, by firing their words right back at them within milliseconds of being said.

In the above video, the wizards at the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology in Japan show how the gun works.

Now, consider how many great uses it would have in your workplace…

Is it Agile? :)