Full Session List

Check out the presentations from our exciting sessions here

Journeys to the Future

Brian Quinn & Janet Swedal


Got a big project? Wondering on how you can discuss successful delivery with upper management when you aren’t sure exactly what will be there? Come hear our story on how we are continuously improving our delivery of a large software project via incremental design and customer input, across multiple teams and geographies. Hear ideas and lessons learned on how to deliver your vision to your customers incrementally while adapting to change.

The Culture of Agile: What Makes it Stick, in Work and in Life

Andy Nelson

Culture is more art than science. So what the hell kind of artwork is it anyway? An organization’s people may sometimes appear to be part of a Van Gogh painting, yet we can find ways to coach them into realism. In this session you’ll learn ways to build the momentum of Agile culture in your company, your tribe of artists, your family… whatever group you want to influence. With relationships and retros at the core, culture can become the glue that holds your Agile transformation together, to scaling and beyond.

The Practice Is The Purpose: Change The Way We Think About Change

Steve Jaccaud

You have relentless competitors. You need to attract and retain top talent. You may have technical and adaptive baggage to address. That means as people, technology, product, and process leaders, you need to adapt. You need to be able to change. And FAST. One big problem – change is HARD. But does it need to be?

Let’s explore ways to hack into an organizations “subconscious” and maybe just change the way we approach change itself.

When it comes to software delivery, lean and agile practices have clearly taken the lead. This session will take a look at the measures we can and should collect across teams and organizations. We’ll dig into metrics that are relevant, interesting, AND useful, and discuss some of the common traps.

Scaling (Cultural) Agility, a conversation

Bill Asch & Emran Bhojawala

Agile is about cultural change. Cultural change is about changing mindsets and allowing people to grow at their own pace. With over 300,000 team members, our Agile journey is about how each individual journey comes together to move the whole organization forward.

This conversation is about the challenges of charting & navigating the journey at a company of any size. In our case, a ginormous one!

We will share experiments that we ran as we stumbled on our way. Some worked, some didn’t, but there was learning from it all. Join us as we lay it all out for you. Who knows, we might just “scale” this thing once and for all!

Scaling Teams: How recapturing startup fun can bring you and your product success

Carl Leubsdorf

Tech startups have an enduring mythology about innovation, productivity, and, yes, fun for participants. Working as part of a small, committed team with clear (even if wildly fluctuating) goals is energizing and fun, and delivers business results better than a lot of other organizations.

But what happens when you get too big to be one team? As organizations grow, teams become too large, and then break into silos (developers, ops/IT, marketing, etc.). The cohesive, collaborative spirit – almost evangelical in feel – turns into a daily or weekly slog through a mountain of Jira tickets.

Carl Leubsdorf, a long time user and small-team advocate, has seen this dynamic across both public and private sector companies, in tiny startups and huge enterprises. Through a series of stories, Carl will outline some of the ways that teamwork can fall by the wayside – and how to counter these patterns as organizations grow.

Scaling Product Thinking

Anne Steiner

The Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe) is the agile methodology of choice for many large enterprises because it promises predictable, frequent delivery in complex environments. As a pair of product-minded coaches who often find ourselves in SAFe shops, we’ve come to believe that an organization’s willingness to blend product-thinking, technical agility and a culture of learning is the secret sauce for getting past “process excellence” and into meaningful product impacts.

In this talk, we’ll share tested ways of introducing product thinking and engineering practices into SAFe shops, covering organizational, product, and technical ground.

– Products as value streams in an organization and how to gently reorganize ARTs over time without sacrificing product community or continuity.

– Using of product stories to engage your teams before and during PI planning in a way that invites collaboration on a healthy blend of continuous discovery and delivery.

– DevOps at scale – patterns and anti-patterns we’ve seen, specifically in shops with a quarterly release. How customer, architectural, and operational learning paves the way for scaling to teams of teams.

Watlow’s Transformation with Atlassian
(An ongoing, lean journey for a manufacturing company)

Dale Wolfe

Thermal systems (sensors, heaters, and controllers) development has more technology than you think. Driven by failure of tools to properly
support agile software development, Watlow started using Atlassian products to develop embedded software for controllers with agile
methods. This presentation will also demonstrate how Atlassian tools scale from project work to enterprise usage all while aiding cultural
transformation from closed to open. The future and ultimate goal of lean product development principles (delivering value to the customer, faster)
embedded into the toolset will be briefly discussed.

Scaling Agile Starts with Culture

Ed Tilford & Anne Losby

Are you wrestling with scaling your agile transformation program? Focusing your efforts on mastering practices will only take you so far. To realize all the benefits of becoming an agile organization, you need to focus on culture first.

Join Ed and Anne to hear the Thomson Reuters story of how their Culture and Agile transformation programs came together, key learnings, and practical tips you can take back to help scale your Agile transformation.

Ed Tilford has spent the past 3 years leading the Thomson Reuters agile transformation program. Anne Losby has spent the last 5 years leading a company-wide focus on values and culture with the aim of helping individuals, teams and organizations be at their best in order to achieve great results together.

Uff da, I am so Gosh Darn Burned Out!”

Leah Cunningham

Christmas Day, 2016 I found myself getting admitted to the cardiac unit at Abbot Northwestern Hospital in Minneapolis. For three days I laid on a hospital bed, hooked up to all sorts of monitors, with doctors running all sorts of tests to determine what was going on with my heart. I was 37 years old, athletic, seemingly healthy and the doctors diagnosed me with left ventricular hypertrophy and high blood pressure. Having excellent labs with everything else, the docs chalked it up to long ignored high blood pressure caused by a combo of genetics and stress. I was burned out. With so many misinterpretations about scaling, agility, breaking things and moving fast, many organizations are realizing a growing concern of employee burnout. This is a serious problem not only for the person who is burnt out, but it also affects their family, friends, workplace, community, and even our economy. As written in a recent Forbes article, “Why We Need To Talk About Burnout In The Tech Industry”, the healthcare spending on workplace stress costs an estimated $125 to $190 billion annually. Even worse, it contributes to around 120,000 deaths per year. Look, the reality is that burnout is rampant in our fast-paced, high-demand, competitive environment that is the tech industry. But it does not have to be this way. This talk will focus on sharing real and tangible solutions on what we can do to protect ourselves against burnout. Join the conversation and lets and make a positive difference today.

Secret Sauce of a DevOps Journey

Jay D. Hopia

Hear how a 100-Year Old Company’s Digital Transformation was a catalyst or the perfect timing for a DevOps journey. Stories with building an open community, partnering and supporting global partners, and secret sauces explained.

Making Friends with Finance

Jenny Kray

Hear about ways to influence Finance on timing and investment for technology projects and ideas from a pragmatic tech CFO. You can be a better partner with Finance by educating them on your role, Agile and the benefit of innovation ideas and then learn from Finance about how the budget and project approval process works at your company to make both teams operate more effectively together.

Adventures in Legacy Code

David Laribee

In this talk, I’ll share solutions to the social and technical problems of wrangling legacy systems. I’ll cover the toolkit I use for evaluating code, getting a team on the same page, and confronting the challenge of technical debt head on.

Highlights of this talk include:

  • Pinpointing hotspots, those problematic areas that court confusion and bugs
  • Gather a party to learn about your system and confront the gnarly parts while continuing delivery.
  • Sensible and responsible use of metrics to build team proficiency and confidence in long refactoring runs.
  • Experience reports throughout – sidecar products, modernization efforts, and extracting microservices.