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Thoughts on Agile Strategic Business Change and Agile Delivery

Another year has ended and I have been looking back at what I have worked on over the last 12 months.  An annual retrospective. What have I learned? What needs special attention and what will I be thinking about on day one with a new client?

Well I won’t go into the details because it’s a bit boring, but the highlights may be of interest to you.  I have listed the top three I identified based on what happened  to me in the last year.  It may not be the same retrospective format you are used to,  but this is what I needed.


Most Read Posts from 2012

Our most read posts from 2012 cover topics from all areas of IndigoBlue's services and interests.

Most of these posts were written in 2012, but a few older posts are still offering great value to our readers. Its interesting to see the range of topics that are included!

The top 10 are:


Old MacDonald

One of the unique specialisms we have at IndigoBlue is what we have to say about Governance and Incremental Business Change. We have a framework to support this; however we are not specialists in naming things. We tell people we are called IndigoBlue because that was the colour Buddha saw on reaching enlightenment. However, we are actually named after the single “Blue Monday” by New Order. So, our framework has been called a number of things: “ADAPT”, “Adapt”, “Adapt and Control” and less imaginatively “The IndigoBlue Governance Framework.”


Targets for Agile Adoption

Last week I was chatting to an organisation keen to adopt Agile. I was told, “We’re aiming to have 60% of our projects running as Agile by 2015”. This struck me as an odd target, and potentially counter-productive.


Which way does the gate go?

Imagine the scenario.  You are working for an organisation or PMO that takes  a relatively 'waterfall' view of the world, with phases and gates.  You spend a large part of your effort trying to get out of the current phase by satisfying the exit criteria to get through the gate.

Q: What can I personally do to become more Agile in this envrionment?

Quite often I hear clients referring to themselves along the lines of "we are not a call centre" yet at the same time the telephone remains a vital way by which clients acquire and then use their services. Toby Roberts the IT Director at The British Horse Society brought this very interesting article to my attention, it is worth a read and full of interesting and reusable information.


Why did the salesman cross the road?

This is, I should warn you in advance, an utterly pointless blog. It is also very boring. However, it has a joke at the end of it. It concerns the last part of my journey to work. I walk from Green Park Station to our office on Jermyn Street. I usually walk down the south side of Piccadilly and turn right just past the Ritz. I then make left turn and cross St James’s Street. It would be more efficient, if there was no traffic, to simply carry on down Piccadilly, but as St James’s Street is busy with traffic I end up slightly lower down and cross at the zebra crossing.

Following on from Stan's post on relative estimation I feel the need to comment on why we don't estimate in days or hours, and why relative estimation is better and lower maintenance for planning and tracking projects.

There are three key reasons we don't use absolute estimates:

  • Developers don't like committing to man day estimates
  • Contingency gets added in at many different stages bloating the estimates
  • Project managers assume the estimates are fixed

Why can't we get to the 'Point(s)'?

Whenever I work with a new technical team, one of the biggest challenges I usually encounter is establishing the use of relative estimation. People are simply uncomfortable with using points for relative estimation and want to constantly convert them back to days and then throw their hands up in the air and say ‘what’s the point?’ in more than one way.

The British Horse Society has launched a brand new digital destination, via its new website developed on Sitecore via digital partners e3.  The site overhaul is part of an on-going technology modernisation programme for the British Horse Society, architected and programme managed by IndigoBlue that will improve the overall membership experience and provide a strong platform for future developments. Further benefits planned for 2013 include the development of a fully personalised membership area and closer integration with the new CRM and membership system developed on Silverbear's Microsoft Dynamics CRM platform.

About IndigoBlue

Since incorporation in 2002, we have built an unrivaled reputation, successfully delivering a number of the UK's largest Agile change programmes.

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