User Stories and Pair Programming: Two Chances to See Us Tomorrow

Chris will be leading off the Agile Manager’s Support Group in San Mateo with a presentation on the theme, “Help! Our user stories are too big!” As usual, there will be a raffle and free pizza, and as a special bonus, you’ll get to take home a copy of our Agile Dictionary sampler, a booklet […]
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January Engineering Managers Support Group: The Economy

Next Wednesday, Jan 21st, we will again be holding the Engineering Managers Support Group at the British Bankers' Club in Menlo Park. We had an excellent turnout when we held our last gathering there in November, and the proceedings had a rather festive vibe. Must have been the Guiness and the onion rings. This month, […]
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The Great Agile Spec Showdown!

Agile evangelists claim that extensive written requirements and specifications can be dispensed with in favor of lighter-weight ‘stories’. It sounds easier, certainly, but can it really be as good? Won’t all of the important details get lost? Join the Engineering Managers Support Group as we stage a participatory showdown between traditional and agile specs. May […]
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The Power of Self-Organizing Teams

Greetings, A lot of attention has been focused on the power of self-organizing agile teams. This power is the foundation upon which Scrum, the most widely adopted agile methodology, is built. Is it hype or is there something there? This month, the Bay Area Engineering Managers Suport Group will experience how a group can self-organize […]
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Great Meetings are on the Agenda – Wednesday

A great engineering manager knows how to run effective meetings. A written agenda is the road map that these meetings follow to success. When your meeting invite includes a well-crafted agenda, the participants are more likely to arrive on time and well prepared. Your meeting is set to move quickly to a successful outcome, and […]
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Presentation Tips and Tricks

At the April meeting of the Bay Area Engineering Managers Support Group, I did a presentation on doing presentations. Here are the slides. You might also want to check out these past posts about presenting. Cheers, Chris
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Technical Management Events and Such

Greetings! I’m back home, in the San Francisco Bay Area, after a couple of weeks on the road. I went to Chicago for the Scrum Gathering, where I presented Agile 101, and What Makes Agile Projects Succeed (or Fail)? I also facilitated a couple of open space sessions. Notes from one of those, Let’s Practice […]
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Active Listening Techniques

The workshop topic from last night’s Bay Area Engineering Managers Support Group was Active Listening. Here are the various techniques that were discussed, as well as a few bonus ideas as well. 101 – The Basics Focus your attention Focus your attention on the speaker. Don’t look at the pink elephant dancing behind them! Encouraging […]
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Engineering Managers Support Group Tonight!

The Engineering Managers Support Group is meeting tonight! Our topic: Active Listening. Of course, we will also have our round-table discussion session, where you can get input from your peers on the challenges you are facing managing engineers. There will be yummy Thai food, and the usual assortment of beverages. All this, and it’s still […]
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Engineering Managers Support Group – Active Listening

A manager who listens well… - will be told more - will be confided in - will understand their people better - will resolve conflicts easier - will be listened to When your people are talking to you, are you really listening, or are you starting to think about what you are going to say […]
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