Food for Agile Thought #418: Spotify Product Model, Advanced Forecasting, Healthy Storming, Biases in Product Management

TL; DR: Spotify Product Model — Food for Agile Thought #418

Welcome to the 418th edition of the Food for Agile Thought newsletter, shared with 49,581 peers. This week, we traverse the landscape of agility in leadership: from Joakim Sundén’s ‘Autonomous Squads’ in the Spotify Product Model to Takeshi Yoshida’s facilitative leadership model. Moreover, Pim de Morree discusses Krisos’s transformational investments, while Daniele Davi offers a cautionary tale on agile adoption. We also dissect the ‘Illusion of Velocity’ in agile metrics, advocating for servant leadership and pushing past conventional metrics to embrace innovation and actual progress.

Then, John Cutler explores delivery tactics; Tiago Nogal delves into strategies against cognitive biases, and Roman Pichler shares inclusive product leadership insights. Plus, experience the ‘Product/Market Fit’ journey with Jason Cohen, from the initial customer pursuit to the overwhelming demand.

Finally, Troy Lightfoot interviews Dan Vacanti and Prateek Singh on advanced agile forecasting, while John Miller champions a Kata-style practice for revitalizing Retrospectives. Sketchplanations brings us a powerful lesson in responsibility, and Marc Randolph praises the strategic value of saying ‘no’ for entrepreneurial clarity and prioritization.

Food for Agile Thought #418: Spotify Product Model, Advanced Forecasting, Healthy Storming, Biases in Product Management —

📖 Preorder the Scrum Anti-Patterns Guide book now for delivery in January 2024!

🗞️ Exclusively on my Substack Newsletter: Developer Anti-Patterns — An Excerpt from the Scrum Anti-Patterns Guide (3).

🥇 The most popular discussion on LinkedIn last week was: Learn for free every single day by following these creative Product peers! 🎓

Did you miss the previous Food for Agile Thought’s issue 417?

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🏆 The Tip of the Week: The Spotify Product Model

Joakim Sundén (via Crisp): The Product Model at Spotify

Joakim Sundén shares insights on Spotify’s true differentiator, ‘Autonomous Squads,’ and the company’s unique approach to product leadership, inspired by Marty Cagan’s empowered team concepts.

🍋 Lemon of the Week

(via Medium): What Is Agile? A Comprehensive Guide

This week’s Lemon depicts a graphic of “Agile” that is a Waterfall wolf in Agile sheep’s clothing, missing the iterative heart and collaborative soul of proper agile practices!

➿ Agile & Scrum

Takeshi Yoshida (via Medium): Facilitating Healthy Storming

Takeshi Yoshida emphasizes the role of facilitative leadership in navigating teams through Tuckman’s stages for robust development and trust-building.

Pim de Morree (via Corporate Rebels): Becoming Bossless: An Update On The Radical Transformation Of Our First Acquisition

Pim de Morree reveals how investment firm Krisos turns research into action, buying and transforming companies into self-managing, progressive workplaces with the NER approach.

Daniele Davi (via Medium): Stop! Stop hiring Scrum Masters!

Daniele Davi warns against hiring Scrum Masters without embracing actual agile change, highlighting a clash between old habits and Scrum values.

🎓 🖥 💯 🇬🇧 Product Backlog Management Cohort Class of Jan 23 to Feb 20, 2024

Discover the Product Owner success principles in this engaging Product Backlog Management cohort class and accelerate your professional growth and career perspective with tried & tested, hands-on practices:

  • Excel at delivering value regularly — your #1 career success factor.
  • Learn to distinguish between valuable and useless ideas.
  • Abandon the feature factory. Instead, learn to contribute to customer and organizational success.
  • Gain actionable insights, learn supportive tools, and practice everything in a safe community of like-minded peers.
  • Learn to say no and build trust and rapport with stakeholders while focusing on creating value.
  • Create engaging feedback loops.

The class will be offered in English.

Enjoy the benefits of an immersive cohort class with like-minded agile peers on the following dates:

  • Tuesday, January 23, 2024, from 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm o’clock CET.
  • Tuesday, February 6, 2024, from 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm o’clock CET.
  • Tuesday, February 20, 2024, from 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm o’clock CET.
Product Backlog Management Cohort Class of Jan 23 to Feb 20, 2024, with Stefan Wolpers —

Learn more: 🖥 💯 🇬🇧 Product Backlog Management Cohort Class of Jan 23 to Feb 20, 2024.

👉 From time to time, we can offer last-minute seats for training classes at cost to individuals who do not have access to a corporate training budget. If you like to be notified about these opportunities, please register here.

🎯 Product

John Cutler (via Loom): My 5 minute manifesto on measuring velocity, impact, "efficiency", etc. I use emojis like 🔥, 👩🏼‍🚒 , 💵 , and 🚀 and even add a little humor.

John Cutler distills the essence of agile delivery: prioritize, work small, and value feedback to fuel strategy and prevent system overload.

(via Mind The Product): Navigating biases in product management

Tiago Nogal highlights insights on cognitive biases in product management, from the Bandwagon effect to the Recency bias, advocating for strategies that promote informed, bias-aware decision-making.

Roman Pichler: Decoding Product Leadership

Roman Pichler discusses the essential role of solid product leadership beyond job titles, offering advice for fostering inclusive and impactful leadership within product management teams.

(via Jason Cohen): Product/Market Fit: Experience & Data

Jason Cohen articulates the palpable shift to ‘Product/Market Fit’ as a transition from customer chase to demand surge, outlining its challenges and critical growth indicators.

📯 The Illusion of Velocity — The Effect of Unsuitable Practices on Agility

In this article, I explore the pitfalls of ‘The Illusion of Velocity’ in agile contexts, peeling back the layers of traditional metrics as leadership tools. Moreover, I point to the advantages gained from leadership engaging directly with teams.

Understand why servant leadership and practices like the Gemba Walks are crucial for coping with complex, adaptive environments toward actual progress. Moreover, get an idea of how to start flipping outdated hierarchies and embrace the natural rhythm of productivity and innovation.

The Illusion of Velocity —

Learn more: The Illusion of Velocity — The Effect of Unsuitable Practices on Agility.

🛠 Concepts, Tools & Measuring

Daniel S Vacanti and Prateek Singh (via Agile Uprising): 🎙 Advanced Topics in Metrics and Predictability

Troy Lightfoot explores advanced agile concepts with Dan Vacanti and Prateek Singh, debunking myths and offering tools for enhanced predictability in their new book “Actionable Agile Metrics For Predictability Vol II.”

John Miller: Revitalizing Agile Retrospectives with Katas

John Miller probes the inefficacy of agile Retrospectives, advocating for a deeper, Kata-style approach to foster genuine continuous improvement and learning.

(via Sketchplanations): Whose job is it?

Sketchplanations reflects on a tale of accountability, reminding us that action often falls through when left to ‘Everybody,’ ‘Somebody,’ ‘Anybody,’ and ‘Nobody.’

🎶 Encore

Marc Randolph: I Promise I’m Not Avoiding You

Marc Randolph champions the power of ‘no’ in entrepreneurship for focus and balance, heralding it as a key to managing priorities effectively.

📅 Scrum Training & Event Schedule

You can secure your seat for Scrum training classes, workshops, and meetups directly by following the corresponding link in the table below:

Date Class and Language City Price
🖥 💯 🇬🇧 December 6, 2023 GUARANTEED: Hands-on Agile #57: Humble Planning: How To Make Your Plans Suck Less with Maarten Dalmijn (English; Live Virtual Meetup) Live Virtual Meetup FREE
🖥 💯 🇩🇪 December 11-12, 2023 GUARANTEED: Professional Scrum Master Training (PSM I; German; Live Virtual Class) Live Virtual Class €1,299 incl. 19% VAT
🖥 💯 🇩🇪 December 13-14, 2023 GUARANTEED: Professional Scrum Product Owner Training (PSPO I; German; Live Virtual Class) Live Virtual Class €1,299 incl. 19% VAT
🖥 💯 🇬🇧 December 18-19, 2023 GUARANTEED: Professional Scrum Master (Advanced) Training (PSM II; English; Live Virtual Class) Live Virtual Class €1,299 incl. 19% VAT
🖥 💯 🇬🇧 Jan 23-Feb 20, 2024 GUARANTEED: Product Backlog Management Cohort Class (English; Live Virtual Class) Live Virtual Class €499 incl. 19% VAT

See all upcoming classes here.

Professional Scrum Trainer Stefan Wolpers

You can book your seat for the training directly by following the corresponding links to the ticket shop. If the procurement process of your organization requires a different purchasing process, please contact Berlin Product People GmbH directly.

📺 Join 5,000-plus Agile Peers on Youtube

Now available on the Age-of-Product Youtube channel to improve learning, for example, about the Spotify Product Model:

Download the Remote Agile Guide for Free —

✋ Do Not Miss Out and Learn More About Spotify Product Model — Join the 19,000-plus Strong ‘Hands-on Agile’ Slack Community

I invite you to join the “Hands-on Agile” Slack Community and enjoy the benefits of a fast-growing, vibrant community of agile practitioners from around the world.

Feature Team Fallacy: Join the Hands-on Agile Slack Group

If you like to join all you have to do now is provide your credentials via this Google form, and I will sign you up. By the way, it’s free.

Help your team to learn about the Spotify Product Model by pointing them to the free Scrum Anti-Patterns Guide:

Download the free Scrum Anti-Patterns Guide by PST Stefan Wolpers — 160 ways to improve as a Scrum Team —

🗞️ Last Week’s Food for Agile Thought Edition

Read more: Food for Agile Thought #417: Working Backward at Amazon, “Marty Cagan’ization?” Agile Contracts, AI to Analyze User Feedback.

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