A Model for Agile Product Management that Can Simplify SAFe

May 25, 2018 — Posted by Al Shalloway

I’ll flesh this out later but heading to the airport. In bulleted form

  • SAFe’s getting more complicated because its approach to filling in gaps is to add more roles & activities
  • Introducing a complicated approach into a complex system causes issues
  • Without good product management, early gains are often lost
  • It’s possible to create a model that works across a surprisingly diverse group of companies because most have:
    • Multiple stakeholders
    • No way to resolve which work is more important
    • Shared services are pulled in different directions
    • Too much WIP
  • Some missing concepts apply most everywhere
    • The need to have one place to pull work from (in SAFe )
    • The need to have something to focus on that is effective (we use MBIs) (not in SAFe )
    • A well-defined progression of strategies -> initiatives and a way to decide which MBIs are most important across the organization (what we call the enterprise level)
    • It is actually not possible to create a good model for implementation because the context there is the best way to organize teams which is quite different for different contexts

Bottom line: suggest there's a solid model for product management while there isn’t one for implementation.

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About the author | Al Shalloway

Al Shalloway is the founder and CEO of Net Objectives. With 45 years of experience, Al is an industry thought leader in Lean, Kanban, product portfolio management, Scrum and agile design. He helps companies transition to Lean and Agile methods enterprise-wide as well teaches courses in these areas.



        

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