Food For Agile Thought #114: Rockstar Engineers, Psychological Safety, Products Spiraling out of Control

Food for Agile Thought’s issue #114—shared with 12,308 peers—focuses on team building and rockstar engineers, or better: the lack of them. We also come back to psychological safety and wonder whether the term is overused or abused?

Steve Denning explains why SAFe == pre-Copernican command and control thinking, and we learn what misconception lets software product spiral out of control.

Lastly, Kate Bennet shares the results of her survey on product prioritization methods.

Have a great week!

Food For Agile Thought #114: Rockstar Engineers, Psychological Safety, Products Spiraling out of Control

Tip of the Week: Rockstar Engineers

Jonathan Solórzano-Hamilton (via Free Code Camp): We fired our top talent. Best decision we ever made.

Jonathan Solórzano-Hamilton tells the tale how firing the genius rockstar engineer liberated the whole organization.

Agile & Scrum

Margaret Heffernan (via TED Talks): Forget the pecking order at work

Margaret Heffernan dissects ‘the super chicken model,’ where organizations place value on star employees who outperform others.

John Cutler (via Medium): The (Psychological) Safety Dance

John Cutler asks: Why are we obsessed with psychological safety?

Steve Denning (via Forbes): What Is Agile? The Four Essential Elements

Steve Denning explains why SAFe, and other ‘agile scaling frameworks’ represent outdated command & control thinking.

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Product & Lean

Kannan Chandrasegaran (via Medium): Why software projects spiral out of control

Kannan Chandrasegaran points at a core misunderstanding that dooms many products from the start.

Kate Bennet (via Mind The Product): Product Prioritization by the Numbers

Kate Bennet surveyed 50 product managers on how they prioritize features.

Maxime Prades (via Brainmates): 5 Lessons from Growing 5 to 40 Product Managers in Just 4 Years

Maxime Prades looks back at his time at Zendesk where he took the product organization from five to 40 people in seven locations.

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