Personal Agility Workshop Boston, Amr Elssamadisy, Ashley Johnson
Agile Boston, Agile MA, Agile training Boston, Agile training MA Agile Boston
Phone: 203-234-1404  Email:
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1-Day Workshop on Tuesday, September 14, 2010


Course Instructors Amr Elssamadisy and Ashley Johnson, of Gemba Systems


Course Description

Have you tried Agile (Scrum and/or any other derivative) and achieved only minor improvements? Are you looking for more significant results? Are you banging your head on brick walls trying to get the QA/QC to test within the iteration? Do you have twenty years of legacy code or integrate with hardware development efforts which you can't test iteratively? Are you unable to get marketing to participate frequently and effectively enough? Have you heard claims of substantial gains by teams using Agile - and wondered what they're doing different from you?

Personal Agility is a workshop for individuals who have started adopting Agile and not yet experienced the full benefits. Whether self taught or having learned through a formal method of training and certification, most new-comers to Agile apply the practices but encounter many problems and fail to harness the real power available to them. Such teams make some progress but frequently find obstacles to Agile in their real world environment.

This one day workshop helps you start to change that. Unlike conventional training, this intensely experiential workshop teaches participants about the fundamental individual skills that fuel hyper-productive teams. Lecture and exercise are interleaved to make human dynamics concrete and actionable. Participants experience personal breakthroughs, and leave with actionable items to increase their effectiveness as team members and members of their wider organization.


REGISTER HERE. Price: $99 per student.


Related Links

1) Infoq interview: Amr Elssamadisy on Making Agile Stick

2) Amr's blog: Recognize And Respond

3) Amr on Agile Journal: Personal Agility

Intended Audience

Members of Agile teams, their collaborators, stakeholders, and management.

Participants should have prior experience with Agile, having worked in Agile teams or been stakeholders of them, for at least 3 - 4 iterations. This is not an introduction to Agile methods.

It is extremely beneficial for whole teams to participate in this workshop together.


The Instructors

Amr Elssamadisy

Amr Elssamadisy, a partner at Gemba Systems is a software development practitioner who helps his clients build better software that is more valuable to their organizations. Amr and
his colleagues at Gemba Systems help both small and large development teams learn new technologies, adopt and adapt appropriate Agile development practices, and focus their efforts
to maximize the value they bring to their organizations. Amr's technical background and experience in C/C++, Java/J2EE, and .NET, allows him to appreciate the problems of and support development teams 'in the trenches'.

(NOTE: One of Amr's books: Agile Adoption Patterns: A Roadmap to Organizational Success) the same time, Amr teaches that most problems - even in software - are "people problems", and therefore are not solved by tools and technology. Therefore, Amr and his colleagues at Gemba Systems are focused on helping their clients build better software within their organizations by focusing on issues such as personal agility, team-building, communication, feedback, and all of the other soft skills that distinguish excellent teams. Amr is also the author of Agile Patterns: A Roadmap to Organizational Success, and Patterns of Agile Practice Adoption: The Technical Cluster. He is the lead editor for the AgileQ at InfoQ and a frequent presenter at software development conferences.

Ashley Johnson

Ashley Johnson is a partner at Gemba Systems. He has over 10 years of Agile experience and has advised and coached teams and organizations of all sizes. He is an invited speaker at Agile2008 and Agile2009 on group dynamics and the social teamwork. Learn more at



This workshop is one day of training that is experiential and exercise-based. There is minimal lecture to kick off exercise and group activities. After the exercises, the group reflects on the collective and individual learning that is taking place.


Individuals exit the class understanding a core aspect of hyper-productive teams and the individual skills that they can learn to improve their current results.

Teams attending this workshop together get real leverage from this class. Teams that attend this class exit the experience with new team-level skills that clarify team objectives and improve team-level results.

Through this hands-on work, participants learn how to:

- Create Personal Agility - the essential behaviors for individuals to achieve effective teamwork,
o Identify critical success factors for any high performance team - and recognize gaps in your team(s),

- Replace conflict and "silo behavior" with tightly aligned teams,

- Use problems in applying Agile as an early warning system - to expose hidden sources of project failure and correct course,

- Leave with a concrete action plan for next steps to apply the next business,

- Deliver on the promise of Agile.



$99 for the one-day class including materials and everything needed to attend.


REGISTER HERE. Price: $99 per student.


Course Outline

This is an experiential course where you learn by doing.

Part 01

* Introduction: task, schedule, and expectations for the day.

* Five foundational concepts and mental models.

Part 02

* Exercise: characteristics of highly effective teams.

* Exercise: where's the bottleneck?

* Exercise: defined and empirical methods.

* Exercise: value gaps.

* Exercise: 3 problems.

* Personal Agility: ownership and responsibility, the 3 keys, developing confronting skills, responsibility vs. accountability.

* Agile connections and Agile as an auto-diagnostic.

* Team agility, shared task, agreements, breakthrough curve

* Exercise: Do we unconsciously avoid ownership?

* Exercise: content vs. confront.

* Improving effectiveness of specific Agile events: retrospective, reviews and demos, iteration planning, standup meetings.

* The essence of Agile.

Part 03

* Congratulations, you reached the base of the mountain!

* Exercise: Punch lists vs Action lists.

* Exercise: Wouldn't it be great if?

* Exercise: Next steps (multi-part exercise).

* Exercise: Commitments and accountability.

Related Links

1) Infoq interview: Amr Elssamadisy on Making Agile Stick

2) Amr's blog: Recognize And Respond

3) Amr on Agile Journal: Personal Agility


REGISTER HERE. Price: $99 per student.