Agendashift roundup, August 2017

In this edition: Launch anniversary; Book revisions; Scrum and Kanban; Public workshops; Speaking; Top posts

Launch anniversary

September 14th will be the first anniversary of the public launch of the Agendashift platform on and our partner programme. On the day I’ll publish and mail out a review of this very productive 12 month period.

Book revisions

Keeping to a regular schedule of fortnightly updates I pushed out a number of revisions to the Agendashift book this summer, most notably revision 3 incorporating the 5 principles highlighted in last month’s roundup:

  1. Start with needs
  2. Agree on outcomes
  3. Keep the agenda for change visible
  4. Manage options, testing assumptions
  5. Organise for clarity, speed, and mutual accountability

Existing readers will have been notified of these updates. You can get your copy here:

You can also request a sample chapter.

Scrum and Kanban

It has only been out for a couple of days, but this week’s post Scrum and Kanban revisited (inspired by some thought-provoking headings from Steve Porter and Dan Vacanti) is already the Agendashift blog’s third most visited page of the year. If you haven’t already, go read it! See also the recording of Steve and Dan’s webinar Scrum and Kanban: Make your teams better by busting common myths [].

Public workshops

Our September launch anniversary coincides with my fourth trip to India, a favourite destination of mine. I’ll be speaking at Lean Kanban India 2017 and then co-facilitating the Bengaluru Flow Days workshop (incorporating an Agendashift practitioner’s workshop) with Patrick Steyaert on the 17th & 18th. We’d love to see you there.

Coinciding with another big conference (Scrum Gathering South Africa 2017), I’ll be doing a 1-day Agendashift practitioner’s workshop in Cape Town on November 8th. It’s only my second trip to South Africa and my first to Cape Town. Can’t wait!

There will be at least one more practitioner’s workshop in the UK this year, possibly in the form of another Strategy Days in collaboration with Karl Scotland. Other collaborations are also under discussion. The planned workshop on Clean Language and Agendashift with Judy Rees has been postponed to 2018.

If none of these work for you and you think there’s an opportunity for a workshop in your city or at your company, get in touch. A trip to the US in 2018 is highly likely.


India, UK, South Africa, and France:

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Agendashift roundup, July 2017

In this edition: Latest on the Agendashift book; Cue card updates; Agendashift in 5 principles; #opportunities; Public workshops; Speaking; Top posts

Latest on the Agendashift book

Just a quick note to let you know how much I’m enjoying the Agendashift book. I haven’t read much in the Lean-Agile space for a few years as I felt nothing new was being said. Your book has changed that for me – great work!

That was from Alex Johnston. Thanks Alex!

To the main site I have added Recommended reading, a list of recommended books and other references extracted from the “behind the scenes” sections of each chapter of part I. The blog post that announced it was one of the top two posts this month, so clearly it was appreciated!

In case you don’t have it already, part I is published here: Agendashift: clean conversations, coherent collaboration, continuous transformation [].

Cue card updates

The post Revisions to the book and cue cards describes some recent revisions to part I of the book and the inclusion of an additional Clean Language question on the cue cards for the 15-minute FOTO game described in chapter 1. Anyone registered for the preview chapter or the cue cards will have received new download links by email; if you’d like either or both of these, just shout.

Agendashift in 5 principles

In the race for top post of the month and catching up quickly with the recommended reading announcement is this one: Agendashift in 5 principles.

You can read these as 5 principles of 21st century change management (it came about as the rewritten conclusion of my keynote on that topic) or – and you’ll know where I’m coming from if you’ve read chapter 5 of the new book – 5 principles for organisational adaptability.

Screenshot 2017-07-25 16.31.36


This is the name of a new channel in our Slack community, available for the posting of relevant vacancies, availabilities, etc. If you need a Slack invite, ask here.

Public workshops

India, UK, and South Africa – the next public Agendashift workshops in the calendar:

Want a private workshop? Get in touch, or find a partner near you.


India, UK, South Africa, and France:

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Agendashift roundup, June 2017

In this edition: Unbenchmarking; Three meetups in three weeks (with one on video); Public workshops recent and future; The book – don’t forget the book!; Upcoming events; Top posts

New: Unbenchmarking

A week ago we announced the Agendashift unbenchmarking service, in which we run your survey results against our dataset and identify areas of opportunity for you automatically. It’s our unique values-based assessment combined with machine learning.

For example, these three prompts clearly share some underlying issues, falling as they do some distance below the scores that our machine model would predict given the shape of this survey’s results overall and the correlations we have seen elsewhere:

unbenchmarking 2017-06-29 11.37.24 annotated

You can access unbenchmarking in a number of ways:

Three meetups in three weeks (with one on video)

This month I did three UK-based meetups in three weeks – Adventures with Agile (London), Agile Yorkshire (Leeds), and Agile Peterborough.

At Leeds and Peterborough I did my interactive keynote Managing change in the 21st century: what we know & where we must do better. In London I facilitated a Discovery session, normally the first of five sessions in an Agendashift workshop. You can watch the video here.

Public workshops recent and future

My most recent public workshop was Lean-Agile Strategy Days, London, a collaboration with Karl Scotland. We’ll definitely be doing this again!

My next two are also collaborations:

Both workshops incorporate an Agendashift practitioner’s workshop. Super-early bird for the London workshop ends on July 26th – don’t miss out!

The book – don’t forget the book!

As described in What next after part I?, the recent work on machine learning is part of a bigger plan, some of which feeds into part II of the book. Part I meanwhile is of course available on Leanpub.

Upcoming events

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Agendashift roundup, May 2017

In this edition: The book is out; Lean-Agile Strategy Days, London; A True North for Lean-Agile; Looking ahead; Top posts; Upcoming events

The book is out!

Part I at least – thoughts on part II later. You won’t blame me for blogging about it more than once:

Get your copy here: Agendashift: clean conversations, coherent collaboration, continuous transformation [].

Lean-Agile Strategy Days, London (June 7th & 8th)

I mentioned this exciting event in last month’s roundup and it is fast approaching. Karl Scotland (my co-facilitator) wrote about it here, and I gave my take here. Tickets here [].

A True North for Lean-Agile?

Imagine… everyone able to work consistently at their best:
 • Individuals, teams, between teams, across the organisation
 • Right conversations, right people, best possible moment
 • Needs anticipated, met at just the right time

If you’ve read the book or seen the blurb for our workshops, those words will seem familiar. As described here, I’d love to seem them used more widely. What do you think?

Looking ahead

In preparation for part II of the book I’ve been performing a new analysis on Agendashift survey data, using Principal Component Analysis (PCA) – a technique popular in machine learning circles – to identify traits common to different sub-populations. I’ll release some early findings soon. There’s some great potential here:

  • Identifying potential case studies for the book
  • Automatically highlighting prompts that have unexpected values
  • Connecting people/organisations based on similarity or complementarity

To keep tabs on this work, on new enhancements to the online tools, and on anything else part II-related, join us in #next-steps on Slack.

Top posts

Upcoming events
07 June, London, UK:
Adventures with Agile meetup: Exercises in Lean-Agile transformation

7-8 June, London, UK:
Lean-Agile Strategy Days, London (2-day workshop incorporating an Agendashift practitioner’s workshop)

21 June, Peterborough, UK:
Agile Peterborough meetup: Managing change in the 21st century: what we know & where we must do better

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Agendashift roundup, April 2017

In this edition: Limited free trial; Featureban 2.2; Cue cards; Book update; Lean-Agile Strategy Days, London (a joint 2-day workshop in June with Karl Scotland); Top posts

Limited free trial

Hiding in plain sight for a while but unannounced: now offers a free trial, allowing you to create your own Agendashift surveys for use with individuals or small groups. You’ll have access to the 18-prompt “mini edition” assessment template, which is available in English, French, German, Italian, Russian, Dutch, and Spanish.

Relative to the paid plan (the Agendashift partner programme), some limitations apply:

  • You won’t have access to the full 43-prompt Values-based delivery assessment template or its corresponding ‘pathway’ template
  • Neither will you have access to the offline assets (workshop materials, source files for things otherwise available only as PDFs, etc)
  • Your surveys will be limited to a maximum of 10 participants each
  • Your surveys will be filed under a single ‘Free trial’ context that you won’t be able to rename

Still, a good way to get a taste of what we’re about!

Featureban 2.2

I was over in Oslo last weekend for a private 1-day practitioner’s workshop (Friday) followed by a Featureban session at our host’s weekend offsite. It was an opportunity to test some changes and the updated deck is now available.

If you’re a registered Featureban user you will have the download link in your inbox already. If not, read the announcement for a description of the changes (and a special offer!), review the Featureban facilitation information and downloads page, and sign yourself up.

See also our resources page.

Cue cards

Talking of resources, and as mentioned in the March roundup, I’ve also updated the Clean Language cue cards for our game 15-minute FOTO. The blog post describing that change came too late but you can read it now:

Book update

Part 1 of the new Agendashift book is very close to completion, and it’s conceivable that it will be out on Leanpub before next month’s roundup. You can read a preview of the intro and chapter 1 meanwhile: request yours here.  Feel free to re-request your preview if you received yours earlier than April 22nd.

Lean-Agile Strategy Days, London (a joint 2-day workshop in June with Karl Scotland)

My next public workshop will be Lean-Agile Strategy Days, London, a 2-day event held jointly with Agendashift partner Karl Scotland. Karl has been one of my closest collaborators, and to say that I’m looking forward to this would be a massive understatement!

Karl has blogged about it (as will I, no doubt):

Top posts

This month:

Still going strong:

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Agendashift roundup, March 2017

In this edition: A little spring cleaning; Continuous transformation and 21st century thinking; An update to our Clean Language cue cards; Returning to India! ; Upcoming events; Top posts

A little spring cleaning

Spring is in the air here in beautiful Derbyshire! It’s also six months since launch, and it seems a good time for some spring cleaning. First order of the day: renaming the Agendashift facilitator day to the Agendashift practitioner’s workshop. Not a dramatic change, but it does more clearly reflect 1) the typical audience, and 2) the fact that it’s a hands-on workshop and not some other kind of event. We have two public workshops coming up in late April – Oslo (24th) and Bristol (27th)  – and we’ve updated both their titles and their descriptions. Check them out!

I’m also leading some private workshops in the next few weeks, two of them abroad. These come in two flavours: the practitioner’s workshop (essentially the same as the public workshop but with the advantage of some shared context), and the Agendashift transformation mapping workshop, aimed at client organisations. The former is mainly for coaches, consultants, and managers; at the latter we’ve had everyone from C-suite execs down to new joiners (diverse is good, by the way).

We may in due course rename the partner programme also. I’ve been soliciting the input of existing partners; overall we think the name describes the relationship well but there is the nagging concern that it may suggest a level of difficulty or cost that may cause some to be deterred quite unnecessarily.

Continuous transformation and 21st century thinking

The blog and by extension the LinkedIn group have been particularly active in recent weeks – helping ideas to crystallise before they find their way into the book – so do please make a point of reviewing this month’s highlights towards the end of this roundup. I’m very encouraged by the response so far. Long story short: 20th century prescriptions have had their day, and even the Lean and Agile communities need to take notice.

An update to our Clean Language cue cards

I’ve reached out to everyone who has requested the PDF for the Clean Language cue cards we use in our 15-minute FOTO game (FOTO standing for From Obstacles to Outcomes) and as described in my new book’s preview chapter. Soon there’ll be a blog post describing both the recent update and the role Clean Language fulfills in Agendashift; meanwhile to obtain either or both of these free resources just drop me a line.

Returning to India!

I’m thrilled to be invited back to India this autumn. If you’d be interested in attending an Agendashift practitioner’s workshop in Bangalore in September (immediately before or after Lean Kanban India), do please let me know. Let’s make this happen!

Upcoming events featuring Agendashift partners

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Agendashift roundup, February 2017

In this edition: Agendashift facilitator days; Preview chapter; Resources page; London Lean Kanban Days 2017; Upcoming events; Top posts

Agendashift facilitator days

For the second month in a row I’m kicking off with the Agendashift facilitator day, the practitioner-focussed incarnation of the Agendashift transformation mapping workshop. The next one is on March 23rd in Manchester, and already the material incorporates the latest learning from this month’s workshop in Hamburg (see Reflections on another Agendashift Facilitator Day). The last two workshops both sold out, so book soon!

Watch out for a date change: we’re putting on an additional public event in Oslo on April 24th after the semi-public event currently advertised for the 21st sold out to internal takers. Watch out also for more 2-day events, where I partner with Martin Burns (Edinburgh), Karl Scotland (London), and others to be announced.

Preview chapter

It was good to find more opportunities to streamline the workshop material but it had a knock-on effect on the book. Chapter 1 (Discovery) is now shorter, chapter 2 (Exploration) correspondingly longer. Chapter 3 needed only minor change and is just about ready for my review team. Overall this added some delay but it was well worth the effort and and it’s moving forward at a good pace again now. Only two more chapters (Elaboration and Operation) before part I is complete!



The introduction and first chapter (Discovery) are available as a PDF preview now. Read the announcement here or just ping me for your copy.

Resources page

Writing the book has prompted me to do something I should have done much sooner, and that is to gather into one resources page the following:

  • Cue cards for our Clean Language game 15-Minute FOTO, a description of which is included in chapter 1 (the preview chapter)
  • The Agendashift values-based delivery assessment, described in chapter 2
  • Our white paper 6+1 Essential strategies for successful Lean-Agile transformation (referred to in chapter 3) and the related video Servant Leadership un-neutered
  • The Agendashift A3 template, referred to in chapter 4
  • Featureban, our Creative Commons-licensed simulation game (not referred to in the book, but it’s still great!)

London Lean Kanban Days 2017

Agendashift is proud to sponsor London Lean Kanban Days (April 3rd and 4th) once again, and as now seems traditional for one of my favourite events of the year I’ll be presenting a new talk, 21st century change management: what we know and where we must do better.  Expect some blog posts soon as I knuckle down and write the talk. There’s still something to enjoy meanwhile, a 10% discount code for the conference. Get in touch if you’d like one.

Upcoming events

24 April, Oslo, Norway (note the change to the advertised date):
Agendashift facilitator day, Oslo
 Mike Burrows,  Thorbjørn Sigberg

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