May 18, 2017

CSCS strongly supports training and continuing education activities. For this reason, the centre regularly organizes internal courses to enhance the knowledge and skills of their employees. These courses are organized by the HR manager Stephanie Frequente. This time she decided to take part in one course she organizes, the Agile Project Management course. After telling us the first part of the training, here she tells the second part of her experience:

"On day 3 of the course we jumped into discussing our experience with implementing Scrum in real-life projects at CSCS. It was great for us to get feedback and to be coached by our trainer Dr. Bastian Migge and to understand what went really well and where to try differently next time. Once again, I could feel the “secret” message of the exercise: “it is good to try, fail, review/learn and improve”! At the same time, we listed all the advantages and disadvantages of using Scrum in our transfer work. Guess which list was longer! No need for me to say that the “+” list was longer!

During the rest of the morning we covered agile leadership, scaling agile, agile planning and we watched a really interesting video on how a well-known company introduced agile culture. (Yes, start guessing about which company I am talking about! I am not giving it away otherwise future CSCS employees participating in the course won’t have a “ah, now I know” effect!) It wasn’t just all theory – we also had the opportunity to really dig our hands into a case study. Once again it was great for me to see how much passion and energy there was in the group to try a new approach. I can really complement the whole group!

The second part of the day was dedicated to understanding further agile methods such as Software KANBAN. I have learned that the principles of Kanban are to show the current state on the Kanban board, limit the capacities of each working step (Work-in-progress – WIP) and introduce the Pull-principle to work, as well as thinking systematically/holistically.

But, the very best part of the day for me personally was still to come. My personal highlight of the day was how to organize a Retrospective Meeting and what to cover. Obviously, me being in HR, really lightened up when I heard the retrospective meeting focuses on the reflection and analysis of negative and positive experiences regarding relationships within the team (absolutely great!!), processes, methods and tools as well as competences. With the goal to deduce concrete action points to increase productivity and to improve collaboration and (fun)! Personally, I really like the idea of discussing the team collaboration and how the team as well as the induvial can grow personally and not only just focusing on the pure outcome of the project.

I now know why the AGILE PM course at CSCS was fully booked within 2 hours of me announcing the course!"