Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Fearless change - my presentation in Toronto Agile Open Space 2015

On June 6th I participated the Toronto Agile Community's open space event. it is a whole day meeting following the format of open space. This is my second time, and I feel more confident to contribute a presentation. My topic is called "Fearless change - how to drive technical changes in large organization". it covered Linda Rising's book "Fearless change", and how I get inspired and applied some patterns to guide me build the RobotFramework community in TELUS. Now I would like to share my experience of this presentation.

I treated it seriously because I feel this is a great opportunity of practicing my public speech. Thanks Toastmasters club gave me the courage.
 - A month before the meeting I asked the advice from Joanne Stone, she gave me the positive feedback, also provided some tips.
 - On the day before the meeting, I printed out the 10 copies of 48 patterns list, and 10 copies of the colorful mind maps based on the book.
 - I brought the paper book with me.
 - I brought the mind map of my presentation note.
 - I wrote down the names of the patterns on the Post-It note and brought with me.

Before the meeting I met Paul and asked him some advice. also I met my colleague Dimitar, I asked him help me facilitate my presentation. It turns out he was one of my best audience.

During the presentation, I introduced the book of "Fearless change" written by Linda Rising. I tried to provide the answer of this scenario: when you learn a new tool or idea from internet or conference, how you can promote them in your organization, where can you start?  The answer is using the 48 patterns in the book, they are easy to follow, very concrete and actionable. I can apply to anybody who aspired to bring changes to the team or organization, especially those are powerless, no official titles. I gave the example how I use some patterns to guide me build the RobotFramework automation testing framework in TELUS. I covered the following patterns:
- Evangelist
- Just Do it
- Connector
- Early Adopter
- Study Group
- Ask for Help
- Involve everyone
- Dedicated Champion
- Do food

One of my favorite pattern is "Just Do it" - it means don't wait for permission from your boss, just do it, DON"T LET YOUR BOSS KNOW. when you get experience and successful, then tell your boss. My experience is if you ask permission to your boss first, he will ask you several questions: What is the benefit? Pros and cons? How much time/money it will take? But since it is at the beginning, you will not able to answer those questions, then you boss will likely say NO, once  he say NO, then you will not be able to work on it. This is Catch-22 problem, to prove its benefit, you need to do it first; to do it, you need to prove it is valuable. So the solution is "Just Do It"!

The feedback from Dimitar was positive, he likes my topic and hand out of the mind map. I believe I am the only one to prepare the materials hand out to the audience.
I found I can still make it better: firstly I chose the wrong room, which is too far from the main hall, limited my audience; secondly I need to provide more information, like the website of the book, and url of the mind map image, and my personal email address, etc.

Next Steps
I felt very good because I feel I can contribute something to the Agile community. A great starting point. In future I am interested in the following area, and hopefully I will provide more topics for the next year:
- Software Craftsmanship movements and coding dojo
- Self-organizing team, what/why/how
- build learning organization
- build cross functional team
- To sell is human (from Daniel Pink's book)

1. Linda Rising's book page 
2. The url of fearless change mind map

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