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20220426 Newsletter

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Dan Greening here. I’m resurrecting this newsletter after a few years working as an Engineering and Product VP. I retired for a minute during COVID-19, content with my savings. I love exploring agility and helping friends succeed, so my retirement didn’t last long. You may have gotten on this email list from attending one of my courses, signing up on my web site https://senexrex.com, or meeting me in person, likely a while ago.

How is Dan Different?

Beside the obvious eccentricities…

Three factors define my past work: fundamental, big-tent, and scale-free agility. I developed one of the earliest large Scrum@Scale implementations (and published articles about it). My new work adds mindfulness practices to enhance agile sustainability. I hope you’ll remain a subscriber and possibly forward this to colleagues who could benefit from upcoming emails.

Here’s the latest work from me:

Mindful Agility Podcast

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Mirela Petalli, a mindfulness meditation leader, and I now co-host a podcast called “Mindful Agility.” Search for “Mindful Agility” and subscribe on any podcast app, or listen through https://mindfulagility.com.

Because my work is scale-free, our Lean Startup-style customer development can emphasize individual agility now (for CEOs, athletes, and ambitious teenagers alike) and move up the organizational hierarchy to teams and enterprises later. If you give the podcast a try let me know what you think.

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We look for episode guests who can discuss how mindfulness and agile work for them. Reach out to me to share your thoughts with our growing audience.

Agile Canon

I have long researched fundamental patterns of high-performance agile. I wrote them up to help rapidly diagnose agile problems and address them. The collection became the “Base Patterns of the Agile Canon,” with five patterns published in an IEEE conference. I later added the Driving Purpose pattern, see https://senexrex.com/are-we-agile/. With the incorporation of mindfulness, and my interest in habituation to sustain it, the Agile Canon now has twelve key patterns. See https://mindfulagility.com/agile-canon-2.

I’m building out course material based on this work. Collaborators are welcome.

Five Whys of Agile

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Whys map showing some common causes of "We did not produce value fast enough," including indirect causes up to 6 levels deep
Agile Five Whys Subset

I crafted a problem statement to drive my work: “We are not producing value fast enough.” All agile fundamentals arise from trying to solve this problem (if you think I’m wrong, send me a note). This problem creates a source for five-whys problem solving, which then leads to patterns in the Agile Canon as solutions. (Sometimes things happen backwards: my colleagues and I spend years exploring solutions and suddenly I realize no one ever succinctly described the problem I was trying to solve!) You can see initial thoughts from me and collaborators at

This work is ongoing and collaborators are welcome.

MA Episodes 6 and 7

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The last two episodes of the Mindful Agility podcast, with guest Noah Rasheta, will likely interest entrepreneurs and business leaders. Noah hosts the very popular Secular Buddhism podcast, and wrote three books on Buddhism. Noah’s startup, a camera equipment manufacturing company, failed about a year after he started his podcast, and that failure led to an identity crisis. He took a job as school bus driver to shed his attachment to the “successful entrepreneur” label. I happened to be listening to his podcast as these events unfolded, riveted.

While Noah isn’t claiming to be an entrepreneur now, he’s resumed “entrepreneurial activities,” and he’s doing pretty well. Check out how he’s now a happier dude, who can roll with anything.

Thanks

Thanks for being a subscriber. Feel free to unsubscribe if this isn’t your thing. Forward this to interested parties.

I still work as an agile coach, but only when clients seek me out directly. I’m a Scrum Alliance Certified Enterprise Coach, one of a handful world-wide. I have been lead coach at Skype, Citrix, and other companies. I am currently testing course materials for Mindful Agility. I can qualify a limited number of attendees for Scrum Alliance Certified Scrum Master and Product Owner. If my interests resonate with you or your organization, reach out.

Dan R Greening, PhD (Computer Science, UCLA)

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