Agile · Change Management · Communication · Planning · Product management · Scrum

Regrouping on Agile planning

Way back in January I posted a plan to write about Agile planning (see the entry here: It was supposed to be a ten-part series that I hoped to complete in 3-4 months.  The basic outline I wanted to cover in this set of posts was as follows:

  1. What’s so hard about Agile planning?
  2. The planning onion (or is it a flame?)
  3. Listening to the market – outside in
  4. Product roadmaps
  5. When worlds collide: functionality that impacts across products
  6. Sprint planning: how much is too much (or too little)?
    1. Incorporating code refactoring and addressing technical debt
    2. The pull mentality versus pushing
  7. Incorporating new feedback between and within sprints
  8. Planning for today – would Kanban help?
  9. Context is crucial but planned work should be in small chunks: Tell me a (short) story
  10. Use the retrospective to improve future planning

Almost a year later and I have completed only the first six of these topics.  Some of them have been two- or three-part posts, and I have also written about a few other things.  But mostly I have been much busier than expected (with work and with fun outside interests).  I mentioned that the lack of an editor has slowed me down a bit, and the fact that I have received some mixed messages about how useful folks are finding my blog has not been very motivating.  It’s also true that I have found it challenging to refine and articulate some of my thinking around Agile planning.  It really is true that I find this stuff less simple than it might appear and I want to share the complexities that I am wrestling with.

Even as I plan to restructure this blog to include additional areas of interest for me, I still want to wrap up with series.  My thoughts on incorporating feedback are almost complete so hopefully I will get this out before being completely swamped by the holidays.  Then early next year I will write about the final three topics and incorporate them into the new format of my blog.

As I have started writing again I am rediscovering my enjoyment in it.  I have also appreciated some fresh ‘likes’ and ‘follows’ from other folks out there; knowing that someone is reading this blog makes a huge difference in my energy level as a writer.  So stay tuned for the last few posts in my Agile planning series and get ready for some more new things on this blog.  I hope you’ll enjoy reading it as much as I like writing it, but I know that in truth it’s not that simple.


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