leadership headstone

Fear, Slack and Agile Transformation

So, if there are any “leaders” out there looking to make significant changes in your organization, like an agile transformation, please pay attention. If you want change, you must first remove fear. In its place, install some slack. Give back some time. Allow people to learn. Allow people to reflect. Allow people to change. Allow people to fail gracefully. You want to lead? Give them a reason to follow, something that aligns with their own intrinsic motivation. Stop using motivational junk food. Stop using fear. Read More →


larry apke, agile coach

A New Chapter Begins

We call our new effort 10XP Solutions. “10X” comes from the well known adage that the best programmers are ten times more productive than the least. The “XP” alludes to Extreme Programming whose emphasis has always been on high quality code, something that is central to the value that we bring to our clients. Read More →


size matters

Agile metrics

No More Agile Checklists – Can We Concentrate on Outcomes?

As an agile coach and change agent I am always asked how maturity can be measured at the team and organizational level. What I have found over the years is that there is no lack of different checklists that can be used to give us these “metrics”. In fact, a recent Google search gave me a page that contains links to literally 41 checklists. In addition to these I have personally worked on many different custom checklists myself as if the 41 currently available do not adequately address the needs of teams transitioning to agile! Why is it that these already existing measures are not enough? Read More →


quality inspection for blog

We Must Inject (not just inspect) Quality

Not sure where I first heard the phrase “you can’t inspect quality into a product” but I have certainly used the phrase myself all too often in my consulting gigs. After a quick Google search, I found the originator of the quote was Harold Dodge and it was first used in a manufacturing context. While I generally eschew appropriating manufacturing analogies for comparison to software development, in this case, it is certainly apt. Read More →


building for scaling agile blog 2

Individuals, Teams, Systems – The Evolution of Agile at Scale

Once upon a time I coached one of the most amazing agile scrum teams. They were able to deliver things that their management found quite unbelievable so much so that they conveyed a meeting to find answers to why this particular group of people were able to so greatly outperform others in the organization. As an aside I was not originally invited to the meeting but the team lobbies for me to be there as they considered me one of the team and, as a team member, partially responsible for their success. Read More →