A Thanksgiving Blog

November 25, 2011 — Posted by Al Shalloway

Many family members and friends celebrated Thanksgiving yesterday. We continued our tradition in our gatherings of individually saying what we are grateful for. We typically do this in the present tense – that is, what we are grateful for now. I wanted to take the opportunity to give thanks for about things people have done for me in the past in my professional area. The list is not complete, so please do not be offended if I left you out – I have tried to keep this somewhat concise. I have decided to do it in an approximately chronological order, starting around 1996 when I moved out to Seattle.

James Murphy (James is my personal/business coach and dear friend)

Thanks for helping me understand my true strengths and for realizing I am ok as I am.

Jim Trott

My co-author on 3 of my 4 books (and collaborating on my fifth). Jim is one of the smartest people I know, but his humility will not let him accept this. One of my dearest friends and most valuable compatriots. Thanks for teaching me how to write and for adding quality to our books – without you, they would not have been useful. And thanks for showing me a gentle way to be – one I do not usually follow, but one that I find strength in by watching you.

Gamma, Helms, Johnson and Vlissides

I only knew John Vlissides, who, unfortunately, had his life cut short too soon through illness. John was another one of the gentle souls who was brilliant but never exhibited he thought so. Thanks for writing your iconic book which opened up an entirely new way of design for me.

Christopher Alexander

While the Gang of Four set the stage, it was Christopher who actually brought it home. His Timeless Way of Building is still one of my most favorite books and one I read every couple of years – enjoying it and learning each time. Thanks for having the courage to say what you believe about your industry and for creating a truly remarkable way of looking at design.

Ward Cunningham

Thanks for giving me insights on object-orientation through CRC cards, for creating XP, FIT and your general insights on software development. You've been an inspiration through your gentleness as well.

Jim Coplien

Thanks for your energy and continued rambunctiousness. Your multi-paradigm for C++ taught me many things including what templates are really for.

Ken Pugh

Thanks for your laugh and the elvishness you bring to the world. Not to mention your genius.

Kent Beck

Thanks for totally confusing me about the role of design. By forcing me to question, to the roots, what I knew about design, I was able to create a much stronger understanding and become much more effective.

Luke Holmann

I have a lot to thank you for professionally. But mostly, I want to thank you for just who you are and how you be. You are a testament to that we never need to lose our joy of life and can make our business seriously fun.

Ken Schwaber

Thanks for making the world aware of what Agile is. There is no doubt you've changed the world for the better.

Jeff Sutherland

Thanks for creating Scrum and for introducing me to Professor Nonaka's work.

Bob Martin

Thanks for all your work and your energy. You are the biggest kid I know and I love that about you.

Scott Bain

Thank you for showing me what a really great trainer is like. And for your friendship, trust and guidance. We will always be fellow travelers on our journey of service.

Alan Chedalawada

Another dear friend and compatriot with Net Objectives, Alan is probably the most unknown thought leader in the industry. Thanks for teaching me most everything I know about Lean and Agile at scale. And for always accepting my poor decisions as "not bad, just not optimal."

Mary and Tom Poppendieck

Thanks for introducing me to Lean in the software arena. And thanks for having confidence in me before I knew how to help others learn it.

Don Reinertsen

Thanks for your encouragement and discussions.  I also love your wit and how you continuously challenge people to give up their cargo. Ideas.

David Anderson

Thanks for creating the Kanban method and for your partnership over the last few years. Your willingness to challenge and be challenged while remaining passionate about your views is inspiring.

Ron Jeffries

Thank you for being the grain of sand in the oyster that sometimes makes a pearl.

Benjamin Mitchell

Thanks for your gentleness and your commitment to me, even when I would have rather you not be. And thanks for continuing to introduce me to new ideas.

Steve Denning

Thanks for reminding me of the value of teams and what good management is all about.  And for the twinkle in your eye!

Everyone Else

I am sure I have inadvertently left out a few others who should be in here.  My apologies for that.

Have a great Thanksgiving weekend, everyone.

Alan Shalloway

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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.


Blog Authors

Al Shalloway
Business, Operations, Process, Sales, Agile Design and Patterns, Personal Development, Agile, Lean, SAFe, Kanban, Kanban Method, Scrum, Scrumban, XP
Cory Foy
Change Management, Innovation Games, Team Agility, Transitioning to Agile
Guy Beaver
Business and Strategy Development, Executive Management, Management, Operations, DevOps, Planning/Estimation, Change Management, Lean Implementation, Transitioning to Agile, Lean-Agile, Lean, SAFe, Kanban, Scrum
Israel Gat
Business and Strategy Development, DevOps, Lean Implementation, Agile, Lean, Kanban, Scrum
Jim Trott
Business and Strategy Development, Analysis and Design Methods, Change Management, Knowledge Management, Lean Implementation, Team Agility, Transitioning to Agile, Workflow, Technical Writing, Certifications, Coaching, Mentoring, Online Training, Professional Development, Agile, Lean-Agile, SAFe, Kanban
Ken Pugh
Agile Design and Patterns, Software Design, Design Patterns, C++, C#, Java, Technical Writing, TDD, ATDD, Certifications, Coaching, Mentoring, Professional Development, Agile, Lean-Agile, Lean, SAFe, Kanban, Kanban Method, Scrum, Scrumban, XP
Marc Danziger
Business and Strategy Development, Change Management, Team Agility, Online Communities, Promotional Initiatives, Sales and Marketing Collateral
Max Guernsey
Analysis and Design Methods, Planning/Estimation, Database Agility, Design Patterns, TDD, TDD Databases, ATDD, Lean-Agile, Scrum
Scott Bain
Analysis and Design Methods, Agile Design and Patterns, Software Design, Design Patterns, Technical Writing, TDD, Coaching, Mentoring, Online Training, Professional Development, Agile
Steve Thomas
Business and Strategy Development, Change Management, Lean Implementation, Team Agility, Transitioning to Agile
Tom Grant
Business and Strategy Development, Executive Management, Management, DevOps, Analyst, Analysis and Design Methods, Planning/Estimation, Innovation Games, Lean Implementation, Agile, Lean-Agile, Lean, Kanban