My Greece Agile Summit experience

Frankly speaking, as a formal trainer for 10+ years I would say that certifications are a must and they bring a lot of value towards the personal career development of each and everyone of us. This is an opinion that I still support and is fundamental for me personally, but there are some things that have equal but different value and we need them in order to complete our career puzzle.

Greece agile summit was one of those experiences that you get the chance to listen, learn, discuss and share. Taking into consideration that this was the third summit in Athens, I must admit that the organizers did an excellent job and took it to the next level. Being in a place that you have the opportunity to share the experience with more than 650 people agile oriented is more than a University degree. It is called life experience . We all want at some point to share the knowledge and see what are the lessons learned, how they apply certain things and what are their challenges.

Personally I feel lucky that I had the opportunity to listen to Jonathan Smart, Head of development at Barclays, talking about the transformation of the whole group of Barclays to agile. It would be unfair if I wouldn't refer to the experience sharing of Eik Thyrsted Brandsgard, Director at LEGO, on how they face their challenges within their agile environment.

We also had the chance to learn from professional coaches about challenges that agile oriented companies face. The value gained from coaches like Robert Martin (Uncle Bob) co-author of the Agile Manifesto , Rachel Davies the author of the first book on Agile Coaching, Steve McDonald, Jeff Gothelf, Dr. Klaus Leopold, Ben Linders and many more was very high and I would really recommend it to all to join next year.

Apart from the event itself, the attendees had the chance to join various workshops on the previous day, and I have chosen the Lean UX: Put a brain on your Agile Process. A workshop delivered by Jeff Gothelf, a very experienced coach that focused mainly on the Lean UX canvas process. The value for me as a Scrum Master was that I have learned a process by getting my hands dirty via a great team work spirit through brainstorming and discussions. All the 5 teams that participated had the chance to discuss and compare the outcome of the session in various stages of the process and it has proven once more that the development of a product or service can have many point of views and focus areas and you can only discover them via team work and brainstorming. As long as you have a good team spirit and follow of course the right process, which in this case was the Lean UX canvas. As you all may know, everybody is unique, like everyone else, and together have the power to innovate and create the future.

My suggestion to the organizers for next year is to add sessions related to innovation as part of agile. How can we innovate and lead the way as a company. From my experience as Innovation facilitator and organizer of Innovation Hackathons, the value is hidden and sitting somewhere between the employees and the only thing we need to do is to bring it to life via the right process.

Concluding my experience, after the summit I feel more agile with lower case a. I strongly believe that we should not just be Agile but we should be really agile. It is more important to see the value out of what and why we are doing, instead of trying to apply the Agile itself as it is.