2010 will be exciting for Agile Bob on Making Agile a Reality

2010The new year starts tonight.  I’m extremely excited because I have HUGE plans for this blog during 2010.  I don’t know if I can live up to all of the things I want to do so I decided to make my goals public.  I find when I make my goals public I am more likely to reach them.  I’m hoping so anyway!

My blog commitments for 2010:

  • Mondays: I intend to write a regular series of articles which I hope will hit home with many people.  I’m not going to expose the name quite yet, so come back on January 4, 2010 to see the answer.  My goal is to publish an article in the series every Monday.  If I run out of good articles I’ll start another series.  Each and every Monday (except for certain holidays) I will have another article in an ongoing series.
  • Tuesdays: The goal is to do monthly contests, surveys and other items of that type on Tuesdays.  In particular I will be continuing the question of the month and will continue to give the winner a $25 Amazon gift certificate.  The question of the month will be posted the second Tuesday of each month.  If you are interested, the December question of the month is still accepting entries until midnight MST tonight.  Get your entry in and have a chance to win the prize.
  • Wednesdays: Articles which are pertinent to the theme for the month.  January’s theme is “Getting a fresh start”, February’s is “Basic practices” and March’s is “Core Meetings.”  I have themes for all of the months of the year but I want to defer commitment on the rest of them.
  • Thursdays: The 2nd Thursday of the month will be a book review, while the 4th Thursday of the month will be a review of an agile (or lean or kanban or collaboration) tool.  The other Thursdays will have articles which are related to the theme of the month or which don’t really fit a category but I want to publish.
  • 1st of the month: At the beginning of each month I’ll be publishing an entry with the previous month’s best blog posts by others, best online articles and also the most popular blog posts on this site.  I have a LOT of blogs I’ll be trying to keep up with and this will allow those of you who do not wish to read all those entries to get the best of the best in one spot.

Other days I may not post anything.  If the 1st of the month falls between Monday and Thursday that day will likely have 2 blog postings available.

Why am I doing this?

The short answer is I’m not totally sure.  A better answer is because it fits in with the company value of having fun.  Writing blog entries where some are stories, some informational, some educational, some time saving, some reviews and some totally random is fun.  I hope meeting my goal of having fun will make this a place you come to in order to have fun too.  Maybe doing that will help you learn more about agile than you know today.  It would be awesome if this becomes a jumping off or starting point for you whether you are new to agile or an old-timer.

Truth time: When I started this blog a long time ago I did it because it seemed like a way to help get some business.  When I did it for that reason it turned out to be work that I didn’t like.  It certainly wasn’t fun most of the time.  I sometimes would be on the blog entry bandwagon and cranking out content (when it was fun) and then I would go nearly silent for a while (when it wasn’t fun).  Then it took a bad turn and started to look like a death march with no end and I definitely wasn’t enjoying it.  I had to make a choice about continuing the blog or just posting once in a great while when something struck my fancy.

Then one day I was reading a blog posting about increasing blog readership and one of the suggestions was to create an editorial calendar.  An editorial calendar basically lists what you want to write and when.  The concept isn’t revolutionary, but the results were eye-opening!  I have a large backlog of items I’ve saved over time as the start to possible blog entries.  In fact, right now there are about 60 items in that queue.  But looking at that list and picking one to write about was always burdensome.  I thought having a calendar would make this more manageable, but I was way off in its actual value to me.

I thought creating an editorial calendar would really turn me off, but I decided to try it anyway.  Instead of a turn-off it was very inspiring.  I was able to put some structure to something that previously had no structure.  It actually made me excited about the writing I would be doing.  I kept adding things to the calendar until I realized I had most of the days for every month with entries.  Entries I WANT to write rather than entries I feel like I have to write.  In case you haven’t noticed, I’ve been more prolific on the blog in the past few weeks.  I bet you can’t guess when I created the calendar?  Yup, a few weeks ago.

I have more things up my sleeve as well.  Recently I put a SlideShare presentation online.  I plan to do more of that.  I intend to have some video as well.  A podcast or two, and maybe some screencasts as well.  All of these are things which sound fun to me.  I’m looking forward to doing them.  If I don’t get extra business from it I really do not care at all.  I want to have fun, build a bit of a community and have this be a resource that helps people.  I respect a lot of people in the industry and some of them have excellent blogs (see the list in the sidebar on the right for just some of the ones I follow).  Their blogs are what I want this one to be when it grows up 🙂  We all have slightly different slants on things and our uniqueness makes each have value.  I want my uniqueness to show through and hopefully help people better understand how to succeed.

Until next time I’ll be writing and writing and writing (happily!) and hoping the writing helps you when you are busy Making Agile a Reality®.

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Bob Hartman

Known as Agile Bob, brings over 30 years of experience and broad industry knowledge cultivated by serving in almost every role in the software industry including developer, tester, documentation writer, trainer, product manager, project manager, business analyst, senior software engineer, development manager and executive. Over the past 15 years Bob has grown from being an early adopter of Agile to his current status as a Certified Scrum Trainer® (CST) and Certified Enterprise Coach℠ (CEC) and an expert in training, coaching and mentoring across all areas of Agile development. Bob is a popular speaker, having spoken at numerous major conferences, seminars, workshops and user group meetings where his engaging style, holistic view of development and personal anecdotes are always well received by attendees.

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