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Project Program and Portfolio Management [clear filter]
Monday, August 3


A (Story Map) is worth a thousand words (Elliot Susel)
Limited Capacity seats available

Manage project scope from ideation to delivery by using a story map. They’re quick to make, easy to maintain, and perfect for explaining your project to others. Elliot will introduce the fundamentals, and then we’ll break off into teams to build your first story map. You’ll leave with the core concepts, resources for further study, and a killer tool to communicate your product vision.
Learning Outcomes:
  • Ability to articulate when and why you use a story map
  • Ability to create your own story maps
  • Methods for using story maps throughout delivery lifecycle to manage and communicate project scope
  • Methods for using story maps to convey level of effort
  • Methods for using story maps to plan iteration themes, and support cross-team coordination

avatar for Elliot Susel

Elliot Susel

Head of R&D, Paid Services, AOL
Elliot Susel is the Head of R&D for Paid Services at AOL, where he is growing a team that performs lean startup-style concept validation and agile delivery for innovation projects.Prior to this role Elliot was the Acting VP of Technology at the Alexandria-based technology startup... Read More →

Monday August 3, 2015 10:45 - 12:00
National Harbor 13


Your User Stories Are Too Big! (Chris Sims)
Limited Capacity seats available

Product owners often struggle to translate their big ideas into small user stories that the team can deliver in a short period of time. When a user story is too big, it is harder to understand, estimate, and implement successfully. This experiential session will give you hands-on experience with 4 simple techniques to split the large stories in your backlog into smaller stories. While there are many additional techniques, this set of four has proven itself sufficient to splint virtually any big story into smaller stories. You will work in small teams, applying each of the techniques to break some big user stories into smaller user stories.
Learning Outcomes:
  • Participants will be able to use four specific techniques to split large user stories into smaller, more specific stories.

avatar for Chris Sims

Chris Sims

Agile Coach and Certified Scrum Trainer, Agile Learning Labs
Chris Sims is a Certified Scrum Trainer, agile coach, and recovering C++ developer who helps software development teams improve their productivity and happiness. Chris is the founder of Agile Learning Labs and co-author of two best-selling scrum books: The Elements of Scrum and Scrum... Read More →

Monday August 3, 2015 15:45 - 17:00
National Harbor 10/11
Tuesday, August 4


Living the Trade-offs: Interactive Agile Roadmap Building (Todd Olson)
Limited Capacity seats available

Product management is essentially a set of trade-offs. This session will interactively break-down and prioritize Agile Roadmaps. The Roadmaps will be refined in iterative sessions. Each session will introduce a new concept that groups will then use to refine their Roadmap. Groups will then present their findings for feedback.
Concepts covered will include:
  • Business Value Prioritization
  • Using Metrics to Inform Decision Making
  • Cost of Delay
  • Usage Metrics
  • Lean Startup-like Experimentation
General Outline:
  • Presentation: Business Value Prioritization and Using Metrics to Inform Decision Making (15)
  • Exercise 1: How to prioritize a backlog based on business value prioritization and data usage decision-making (20 + 10 debrief)
  • Presentation: Measurement and Lean Startup-like Experimentation (15)
  • Exercise 2: How will you measure your top features’ impacts? (10)
  • Debrief + Q&A (5)

Learning Outcomes:
  • 3 takeaways include:
  • * How to prioritize a backlog based on business value prioritization.
  • * How weighted shortest job first (WSJF) can influence prioritization
  • * How to use data to inform product decision-making
  • * How to prioritize experiments and leverage the results to inform prioritization


Todd Olson

CEO, Pendo

Tuesday August 4, 2015 10:45 - 12:00
Chesapeake 7/8/9


Rebranding as a Product Delivery Office: Transforming Uncertainty into Knowledge (Pat Reed, Walt Wyckoff)
Limited Capacity seats available

As organizations realize the benefits of agile development and start to transform into agile enterprises, traditional PMO's often struggle to understand their new value proposition and shed traditional governance frameworks and mindsets. This workshop will walk through a Discovery exercise to explore how the Agile PMO delivers value and a rebranding exercise into transforming the traditional PMO framework and practices into a high performing Product Delivery Office (PDO) or even a Value Management Office (VMO). Workshop outcomes will include a deeper understanding of how to transform your PMO into a catalyst for learning and enabling your enterprise transformation.
This workshop will be highly interactive with the following agenda:
1. 15 minute presentation on how Agile PMO's create value (with an emphasis on cultivating an organizational growth mindset and understanding what changes and why)
2. 10 minute table exercise of crafting a new value proposition for your agile PMO using Value Proposition Design combined with an Appreciative Inquiry approach
3. 20 minute table exercise of crafting a new vision, value model and change canvas for transforming your PMO into a PDO or VMO
4. 20 minutes for table presentations and idea sharing where participants from each table will share their top ideas and challenges while facilitators affinity map and mind map
5. 10 minute synthesis of ideas about how participates might take action to apply on the job; Q&A and wrap

Learning Outcomes:
  • 1. Recognizing challenges and recognizing pitfalls of applying traditional PMO practices in an Agile transformation
  • 2. Emergent thinking and cutting edge techniques for taking the organization to the next level
  • 3. How to create a culture of value and a clear line of sight to teams and individuals
  • 4. Understand that the role of an Agile PMO is to transform uncertainty into knowledge and value through setting the foundation for a learning organization

avatar for Pat Reed

Pat Reed

Consultant, iHoriz
Experienced enterprise agile coach and consultant adjunct professor at UC Berkeley Agile Management Program Director on the Agile Alliance Community Leader and co-founder of PMI's Agile Community of Practice experienced Agile Executive for more than 25 years at The Walt Disney Company... Read More →

Tuesday August 4, 2015 14:00 - 15:15
Potomac C


Budgeting vs Estimating for Agile Projects (Debbie Madden, Rex Madden)
Limited Capacity seats available

Nearly every software development project starts with one question: "How much is this going to cost?" Want to learn a powerful 4 step, tactical approach to budgeting that gives you the confidence to answer this question well and that takes 20% of the time than estimating? Read on.
The Problem
Product managers and stakeholders are constantly deciding, “Should I build this?”, "How big a team do I need?", “Which features should I build next?”, "How long will this take" or "What will I get by X date?" Knowing whether a project is going to take a few weeks or several months is a big factor. But estimating software projects is hard. You're trying to predict the future. Realistically, teams will usually be off by 40% to 50%, maybe even 100% or 200% (http://bit.ly/1yGeybG). And estimating takes time: even the lightest-weight Agile processes take several hours...sometimes even days or weeks. Finally, detailed overly-specific estimates end up restricting creativity. In the end, paying a lot of time for poor estimates that helped lead to the #noestimates movement, with teams refusing to do any estimates up front.
The Truth
Most people know estimates aren’t perfect, but they’d still like to have some sense of scale. “Are we talking days, weeks or months?” is often enough to make a good business decision. After all, a set of features might sound good if it’s 1-3 weeks, but might not be worth it if they’re 1-3 months.
The truth is: It's still the responsibility of the technical team to provide these estimates. Why? Because technical teams are the ones that have the most relevant knowledge to answer the question.
The Solution
We’ve got a powerful solution. For strategic and high level decisions: Stop estimating, start budgeting. We walk you through a tactical, 4 step solution that you can use in your job today to budget both new projects as well as ones that are in progress. We will show you how to fit the process to the decision, doing just enough estimating to satisfy the business side. We will also show you how to present your estimate as a range of outcomes so that you can reinforce the “inexactness” of the estimating process.
Who's This For?
This is truly valuable for anyone on an Agile team that wants or needs to know "How long is this project going to take?", "What features will get done by X date?" or "How many people should I put on this project?" If you are a Product Manager, Project Manager, CTO, VP Engineering, Developer, Stakeholder, CEO, then you will want to attend this session.
Learning Outcomes:
  • Decision-Making - Step 1 of 4 of our tactical solution walks through the importance of clarifying the true decisions you are making. You'll learn how to get to the root of 'Why' you need to know "How much this is going to cost?" and you'll learn techniques you can use to determine if Estimating or Budgeting is the right tool for your specific decision.
  • Probability Calibration - You get to try your hand and probability calibration. Most people aren’t as good at it as we think. Most people are either generally over confident or under confident in their estimations. We teach you techniques on how to level yourself to get better at accurately 'guessing' an appropriate range of how long something will take.
  • Monte Carlo Simulation - We show you how to run your calibrated probability guesses them a Monte Carlo simulation 1000's of times. The result is a range of cost and time results that you can be confident in.
  • Budgeting New and Existing Projects - We teach you how to budget a brand new project as well as use feedback from in progress projects to continue to refine your budget model, in a way that embraces variability and risk inside Agile projects. We walk through a sample project and teach you how to get a realistic budget in 20% of the time it takes to do a full Agile estimating sessions, by using Monte Carlo simulations, or by using Ballpark (www.stridenyc.com/ballpark)

avatar for Debbie Madden

Debbie Madden

CEO & Founder, Stride Consulting
Debbie has built 5 companies from the ground up and has been CEO of three of them. As CEO and Founder of Stride Consulting, Debbie brings 22 years of tech leadership, and a daily passion for helping businesses improve through software. Due to her reputation as a passionate woman executive... Read More →

Rex Madden

CTO, Stride
Tinkering, learning, improving are my passions. As the Technical Co-Founder of Stride, I am bringing 19 years of running startups to the NYC tech community. I've run and formed 5 startups and have been writing code my entire life. Agile software development and Lean Startup drive... Read More →

Tuesday August 4, 2015 15:45 - 17:00
Potomac 5/6
Wednesday, August 5


Taming the Agile Release Planning Beast (Linda Cook, Doug Depew)
Limited Capacity seats available

Trying to figure out Agile Release Planning? We've done it and we've done it well. Twelve teams - done! Twenty teams - done! Forty teams - done! If your organization needs to tackle the enterprise release planning beast, you should attend this session. Whether you are struggling with planning a large Agile release planning event or simply trying to figure out how to improve your current Agile release planning events, this session will provide nuggets of learning from planning teams with hundreds of people spread around the globe. Many organizations have tried to conduct enterprise Agile release planning and gave up because they could not overcome some of the basic obstacles like who to invite, where to hold the event, and how to keep everyone engaged.
If you are trying to figure out how to coordinate two teams or dozens of teams, this session will provide insights into what works and what doesn't. You will gain experience by practicing actual Agile release planning exercises to help you prepare for your organizations next Agile RP event. The learning experience starts with a presentation on the key steps to consider as you launch a large Agile program.

Learning Outcomes:
  • Participants will learn how to plan, execute, and iterate through Agile release planning for 2 - 50 teams. Learning outcomes include how to:
  • » Start at scale
  • » Plan the 1st Agile release planning event
  • » Pre-plan activities
  • » Budget
  • » Prepare the Release Backlog » Coordinate logistics
  • » Keep participants engaged
  • » Facilitate and execute Iterate using retrospective outcomes
  • » Map dependencies across multiple teams
  • » Slot stories across the release

avatar for Linda Cook

Linda Cook

Chief Learning Officer, Project Cooks, LLC
Early in 2015, I made the decision to re-launch my consulting practice to help organizations find their way to agility. My small team is made up of collaborators, employees and business partners aimed at delivering the best training, coaching and mentoring. All our work is based... Read More →
avatar for Doug Depew

Doug Depew

Enterprise Agile Conslutant, Looking Glass Consulting LLC
Agile / Lean Consultant who has experience with some of the largest enterprise agile adoptions in the US. From the team level to C level, Doug has helped organizations go from Forming to Performing. Check out his workshop with Linda Cook on 'Taming the Agile Release Planning Beast... Read More →

Wednesday August 5, 2015 14:00 - 15:15
Chesapeake 7/8/9


Agile Chartering from Strategic to Tactical: Managing Risk & Quality (Ainsley Nies, Elizabeth McClellan)
Limited Capacity seats available

Agile chartering adds practices associated with starting a project or stream of work– previously missing from the Agile “body of knowledge”–and connects the work with the larger organizational strategy and direction. Through agile chartering we consider the whole system that delivers business value. In this interactive session Ainsley, Elizabeth and Diana will demonstrate how the model of agile chartering from Liftoff: Launching Agile Teams and Projects can clarify direction through all organizational levels and amplify strategic intent with aligned tactics. We will present a high-level description of the agile chartering elements and participants will practice the activities used to mitigate project risk and reinforce the team’s ability to deliver quality products.
Learning Outcomes:
  • Participants will:
  • • Identify a list of tools and techniques for chartering teams to strengthen business strategy, mitigate risks, and achieve quality
  • • Practice with visual tools and techniques for elements of chartering
  • • Discuss pros, cons, and applications of tools and techniques for chartering


Elizabeth McClellan

Visual Notes Artist, Elizabeth McClellan
Conversations are not linear. Topics move round and ideas bounce. My challenge is to capture the moment with text and images in order for participants to retain information. Ask me how to make your conversations visible.elizmcclellan.com

Wednesday August 5, 2015 15:45 - 17:00
National Harbor 4/5
Thursday, August 6


Business Models, Pivots, Architecture and Agility (Jason Tanner)
Limited Capacity seats available

We can’t always be Agile...And we can’t just change our technical architecture on a dime without considering business model impacts. Likewise, we can’t change the business model without understanding architectural impacts.
This workshop thoroughly examines the linkage between business models, technical architectures, Agility and the implications of change to make faster pivot decisions. Further, this session will explain how business model or architectural changes can constrain Agility.
This session for product owners, product managers, and leaders ventures far beyond backlog prioritization. Through an interactive case study format, attendees will receive a model for understanding the interrelationship between business models and architectures and limitations on Agility. This model will help attendees avoid countless hours grappling with tough decisions.

Learning Outcomes:
  • Apply a business model generation framework.
  • Practice mapping business models to the generation framework.
  • Identify value exchange models and their relationship to architecture.
  • Describe what can and cannot be Agile about business model and architectural changes.
  • Manage architectural change through collaborative roadmapping.
  • Determine how business model change influences product roadmaps.
  • Manage business model change.
  • Describe how product owners and product managers leverage this model to manage backlogs of features and epics.

avatar for Jason Tanner

Jason Tanner

CEO, Applied Frameworks, Inc.
Jason Tanner is the CEO of Applied Frameworks, a product management consulting firm. Jason’s passion is coaching people to develop products that customers love. He mentors, teaches, facilitates and sometimes does the work to identify and apply the optimal frameworks for a situation... Read More →

Thursday August 6, 2015 09:00 - 10:15
National Harbor 10/11


Value Network Mapping - Raise portfolio performance by balancing demand and supply (Bruce Winegarden)
Limited Capacity seats available

Participants will learn a proven technique for modeling how to organize development teams while minimizing dependencies and maximizing business responsiveness. Value Network Mapping builds on Lean’s value stream concept by recognizing two orthogonal dimensions; 1) the business value stream for how the business generates value through interactions with customers, plus 2) the delivery value stream from concept, through development and launch. Part one of the session will discuss the concept and advantages of this approach, then participants will do a Value Network Modeling exercise to experience it for themselves.
Value Network Mapping makes it easier to match business demands to the capabilities and capacity of the knowledge worker supply. The traditional view of programs and projects can cause problems when moving to agile techniques because they typically represent both the demand side and supply side of the equation. This coupling makes it more difficult to fund and staff stable, dedicated teams and complicates portfolio capacity planning. This exercise has proven valuable for dozens of companies and is particularly well suited for transaction-oriented businesses such as insurance, financial services, telecom, and retail that rely on an array of different information systems.
This approach overcomes limitations in popular scaling frameworks such as SAFe because it addresses the entire set of work in a software or IT portfolio, and can be used in mixed mode environments where some groups may be agile and others use different development methods.
Learning Outcomes:
  • Split traditional project view to decouple demand and supply
  • Match business demand to the capabilities and capacity of IT supply
  • Reduce dependencies and increase throughput and quality
  • Experience technique for modeling complex IT portfolios
  • Overcome limitations in agile scaling frameworks


Bruce Winegarden

Agile Transformation Consultant, Rally Software
Bruce Winegarden combines extensive business experience with Agile and Lean knowledge to transform software and IT organizations. He focuses on adaptive business techniques to overcome the inertia of traditional plan driven approaches and achieve breakthrough results. Bruce has a... Read More →

Thursday August 6, 2015 09:00 - 10:15
Chesapeake 10/11/12


Hoshin Kanri: Collaborating to Chart and Manage Strategies (Gail Ferreira)
Limited Capacity seats available

Hoshin Kanri, 方針管理 which means “direction management” in Japanese, is a method based on lean principles and practices. Designed to capture and cement strategic goals about the future, and the actions needed to bring them to reality, Hoshin Kanri allows organizations to build collective corporate strategies and visions, mapping into actionable and measurable results. According to Professor Yoji Akao. "Each person is the expert in his or her own job, and Japanese TQC [Total Quality Control] is designed to use the collective thinking power of all employees to make their organization the best in its field." Hoshin kanri aligns organizations to reach a common goal by creating a high level vision and strategy, and mapping into measurable results.
This talk will present the tenets and link of Lean and Total Quality methods to Hoshin Kanri, and allow the audience to experience the deep wisdom and direction that can be realized by creating strategies, tactics, processes, and key results collectively in a group activity by participating in a Hoshin Kanri event.
This session is aligned to the portfolio, program, and portfolio management track as it will help organizations select and relate corporate strategies with visions, create plans using the Hoshin Kanri method, manage results at the portfolio, program, and project level, and adapt by using collective techniques to manage and adapt initiatives.
The following agenda is proposed:
1. Introduction (5 minutes)
2. Introduction to TQC and Hoshin Kanri (10 minutes)
3. Link of Lean principles and practices to Hoshin Kanri (15 minutes)
4. Introduction to Hoshin Kanri planning (15 minutes)
5. Hoshin Kanri exercise (30 minutes)
Exercise: Form into groups with easels and flow chart pens, and using a Hoshin Kanri tool from ASQ (X Matrix Chart), we will accomplish the following activities.
1. Create strategies
2. Create tactics
3. Create processes
4. Define results
How we will get there:
Teams of 5-7 individuals will form into an organization or group of their choice, and complete the following steps:
1. Deep Dive Review of current business activities and business environment
2. Design of Innovative Breakthrough objectives
3. Obtain agreement of company business objectives
4. Develop world-class strategies designed to meet the agreed business objectives
5. Develop key measures and balanced scorecard for tracking performance
6. Develop supportive action plans and measures
7. Implementation of Strategic Business Plan
8. Structured execution of strategies across the organization
9. Process Design for Periodical Review and Adjustment
Learning Outcomes:
  • 1. Identify Lean Principles and Practices and their Link to Hoshin Kanri
  • 2. Identify tools such as the Balanced Scorecard and the link to Hoshin Kanri
  • 3. Understand the fundamental steps of applying the Hoshin Kanri method to strategy planning
  • 4. Implement a specific Hoshin Kanri tool to create strategy, tactics, processes, and results.
  • 5. Group exercise to reinforce concepts.

avatar for Gail Ferreira, PhD

Gail Ferreira, PhD

CEO, Prima Leader
Dr.Gail Ferreira is an accomplished senior executive, award winning author, and speaker with 25+ years of deep experience in lean and agile methodologies and consulting. Gail utilizes this experience to help organizations realize maximum value on their investments by leveraging agile... Read More →

Thursday August 6, 2015 10:45 - 12:00
National Harbor 10/11


Scrum Tetris: The Secret to Fitting All That Work Into a Single Sprint (Jesse Fewell)
Limited Capacity seats available

Do you struggle with the notion having a shippable product increment every two weeks? Do you have too much architecture and testing that could possible fit? Are your teams demanding more time than the business can wait? This hands-on exercise will help you plan what to do now, what to do later, and why.

Learning Outcomes:
  • Rather than waiting for everything we could want to do our work, the agile mindset is one that demands forward movement with what we have.
  • Rather than pushing out all the quality and deliver work until the end, the agile mindset is one that demands prioritizing our work.
  • Rather than settling for Sprint 0 and Release Sprints, we can evolve and mature to do more work
  • Rather than focusing on the local efficiency of more features at once, an Agile mindset is one that demands faster delivery, even at the expense of rework

avatar for Jesse Fewell

Jesse Fewell

Agile Coach & Trainer, JesseFewell.com
Jesse Fewell is a writer, coach, and trainer in the world of management and innovation. From Boston to Bangalore, he's helped startups and conglomerates alike catapult to breakthrough results. His adventures are written down in "Can You Hear Me Now", his handbook for remote teams... Read More →

Thursday August 6, 2015 10:45 - 12:00
Chesapeake 7/8/9
Friday, August 7


Achieving transformational agility through enterprise architecture - a Cisco case study (Gustav Toppenberg)
Limited Capacity seats available

Most industries in today’s competitive environment are undergoing some level of business transformation to evolve its value and impact. As organizational leaders look to continue to differentiate their companies from those in the marketplace they plan transformational efforts to build or maintain competitive advantages.
Change initiatives are time consuming and costly, significantly impacting an organization’s drive toward success and nearly half of them fail. In the face of mounting pressures to continue to deliver value fast, organizations are looking to agile practices and principles to generate the needed speed to deliver solutions to the marketplace faster than their competitors.
Agile practitioners will not be surprised to learn that while 82% of Fortune 500 CEO's feel their organization did an effective job of strategic planning. Only 14% of the same CEO's indicated that their organization did an effective job of implementing the strategy.
Change and transformation is unavoidable, organizations need to resolve how to successfully adapt and sustain change, bridging the gap between strategic intent and execution to deliver the intended value.
In this session, Gustav Toppenberg will share how Cisco Systems is implementing ‘delivery transformation’, a combination of Agile Development and Continuous Delivery practices and principles to ensure the speed of value delivery is faster than the pace of its competitors. As the head of enterprise architecture operations in Cisco IT, Gustav will share how in the face of the need to change the pace Cisco has changed the role of enterprise architecture and portfolio management, capabilities that spans beyond IT & technology to business and operating models, to enable a succinct and coordinated approach to enable the execution teams to ensure their work is tied directly to strategic intent.

Learning Outcomes:
  • The presenter will share the Cisco ‘Architecture-led Investment Planning’ process utilized at Cisco pausing to show specific examples of how the EA and the Portfolio Mgmt. capabilities have changed to be useful and enabling for agile delivery teams. The examples will include the connection of architectural roadmaps, investment planning and the transfer of architectural decision to agile teams.
  • Participants will have real-life examples of the challenges and benefits Cisco is seeing from this transformation. They will also see first-hand the roles and responsibilities architects, agile team members and others in Cisco IT have that make the transformation possible.


Gustav Toppenberg

Head of Enterprise Architecture Operations, Cisco Systems, Inc.
A goal-oriented, insightful and seasoned strategic leader & transformation agent, with 14+ years of experience in start-up, high-growth and fortune 100 companies. Extensive experience building & leading transformational efforts for both small & global operations. A strong track record... Read More →

Friday August 7, 2015 09:00 - 10:15
National Harbor 12