Be an Expert in a Year – Growing the Agile Way

The guys over at Expert Table Tennis had a great idea. What would it take to become an expert? Dedication? Heart? Perseverance?

The Expert in a Year Challenge took part during 2014 and followed the progress of novice table tennis player Sam Priestley, as he attempted to go from beginner to expert in just one year and break into the top 250 players in England.

Sam (the subject of the experiment) has been playing recreational ‘ping-pong’ in his kitchen with his flatmates for a few months. He then decided to buy himself a table tennis robot to practice with. He then, with the help of his friend Ben Larcombe, started a challenge…

You can find the whole story here.

What I find most fascinating about this story is the fact that there is almost a universal truth in all of this: As we increase investment in experience, we will become (over time) more productive and efficient. 

This is at the heart of what we do here at Agile for All.

Agile for All Consulting Philosophy

  • Training – to start the agile adoption by setting up the framework which will be used. We like to teach Scrum as the basis, but we include many ideas from other agile processes and lean thinking.
  • Coaching – to cement the training into a permanently changed way of thinking and doing things.
  • Practice – continuously reinforcing the training with correct practices which lead to high quality results.
  • Patience – remembering that change takes time and also requires a settling of ideas into solid and repeatable patterns for the organization.

The practice and patience is where the organization is taking on all of the “hard work” in the sense that they must invest time in experience “being Agile” rather than just “doing Agile.”

I find, that one of the most powerful conversations I often have with people from all levels of an organization is around the art of possibility. Vision casting the (very much real) potential of the company to do great and extraordinary things.

It takes time, dedication, perseverance, and heart. The heart… that’s where we start.

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Peter Saddington

Peter Saddington is a 3x startup founder, angel investor, and Certified Scrum Trainer who has been in software development for 20+ years. He has three Masters degrees (Counseling, Education, and Religion) and the author of The Agile Pocket Guide (Wiley, 2012). Come learn from a proven enterprise coach and startup founder with experiences of moving a 12,000 person business unit to agile, building his own startups, going through venture funding, and even acquisition. Peter's courses are 100% experience and workshop based with less than 30 slides in a 2-3 day training course. In Peter's CSM courses you will experience a full-team scrum simulation over 2-days and shall become more than just a CSM, you'll become a better leader and human.

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