Archive for November, 2012

As I have been doing a lot the last weeks/months, I was looking to find people from countries we don’t have yet in “Who is agile”. I came across Asad. He got recommendations of being the first agile person in Iran. He founded IranAgile. And not just that, he translated Henrik’s Scrum and XP from the trenches, to persian. Having the ‘Who Is agile’ book translated in multiple languages, I know how much work that is. I also know a lot of translators of ‘Scrum and XP from the Trenches’, and they are all great agilists. So I started to follow Asad on twitter. Unfortunately most of what he says is not in English, but the few things he said I understood and I agreed with.

What is something people usually don’t know about you but has influenced you in who you are?

Many people in Iran know me as an Agile evangelist. Not many people know that I’m also a music lover. I love new age music especially Micheal Cretu’s music.

If you had not been in IT, what would have become of you?

I would have been a musician.

What is your biggest challenge and why is it a good thing for you?

As the founder of the Iran Agile community my biggest challenge is to make people and organizations realize that Agile can work in our culture.

What drives you?

I really like to help people. People who know me closely know that I will always be at the forefront of the Agile movement in Iran.

What is your biggest achievement?

My biggest achievement is that I have started the Iran Agile community. The Iran Agile community has been helping small and large organizations understand and adopt Agile.

What is the last book you have read?

Buyology: Truth and Lies About Why We Buy by Mart Lindstrom , Paco Underhill

What question do you think I should also ask and what is the answer?

Q What’s your passion?

Helping and coaching people to build better products.

Whom do you think I should ask next?

There are many people I would like to suggest. Here are a few:

  • Henrik Kniberg from Sweden who helped us to run the first Agile course in Iran
  • I would also like to recommend Faisal Mahmood from the UK who has been helping us reach our goal by doing several Agile courses in Iran.

June 2012

Tabriz, Iran

Update: if you like this, you can buy the book: who is agile here.

After I announced the book version of who is agile, Sergey was one of the first who contacted me to help out with the translations. Although we have not published the Russion version yet, I’m very happy to have Sergey on our team. When we started looking for people in other countries, we did not any propose someone from Russia. It was only when I started working on Guy’s answer I realized I had a great team and I should see if we had people from missing countries on our team.

 

What is something people usually don’t know about you but has influenced you in who you are?

I believe we should enhance the connections between European and Russian agile/lean worlds. The Russian agile community is too closed-in and intellectually isolated from the broader agile community. We stew about our own ideas over and over and don’t often get fresh outside inspiration. It’s one of the reasons I spend time on translating this book and other interesting articles of well-known coaches and trainers.

If you had not been in IT, what would have become of you?

When I was a child I dreamed about being a zoologist. Animals were my passion and I read tons of books. Today I couldn’t even imagine spending my time in Africa’s savannahs or subtropical jungles watching wild life. I think I could be a reporter who travels around the world and describes fine points of every day life in different countries. Though I’m not a big fan of food that might seem exotic to a Russian, I believe I could deal with it.

What is your biggest challenge and why is it a good thing for you?

Learning foreign words. I make myself practise language regularly so I don’t forget. It’s the only reason I imagine why it’s good for me.

What drives you ?

My fiancee, my teammates and enormous curiosity.

Several years ago I understood there was no best way for creating software projects, only better ones. From that moment every time my teammates and I achieve some state, I start thinking: “Ok, we’re on the next step up. What is higher? How can we climb there?”. My curiosity helps me to constantly move forward.

Besides this, it’s ordinary for me to choose the wrong direction and find myself in a state I don’t want to be in. If it happens a few times in a row, I feel lost and my mood goes down by leaps and bounds. My fiancee and colleagues are my secret superheroes who carry me out of the danger zone at those moments.

What is your biggest achievement?

I spent at least half an hour trying to figure out what it could be. No success. I think my biggest achievement is still waiting for me somewhere :).

What is the last book you have read?

Ready for speech. Presentation’s constructor written by Radislav Gandapas. It opened my eyes on how people absorb information (especially during presentations) and showed me a number of tricks for getting better results from a speech.

 

Whom do you think I should ask next?

Tatiana Vasilieva. She’s a great mover in the Saint-Petersburg agile/lean community.

July 2012

St Petersburg, Russia

If you like these questions, in our book (who is agile) you can find 88 more people. And Sergey’s answer to the question: Q: “What impressed you most of all last month?”

Today a tribute album for JJ Goldman is released . There are a lot of JJ Goldman songs that I like.

I want to give you a song that came out when I was 14. Je te donne. It contains so much of me.

– English & French mixed.
– Pair singing
– slow & up tempo combined
– Emotional & rational combined
– Song by a person who:

– invests a lot in community (les enfoirées)
– is really down to earth
– prefers to spend time with his family over a public life

deep lyrics that make me think
– a postive mindset
– a song that gives me energy
– it’s a song that I want to give to everyone in my life.


I can give you a voice bred with rhythm and soul
From the heart of a welsh who’s lost his home
Put it in harmony let the words ring
Carry your thoughts in the songs we sing
Je te donne mes notes, je te donne mes mots
Quand ta voix les emporte à ton propre tempo
Une épaule fragile et solide à la fois
Ce que j’imagine et ce que je crois.
R
Je te donne toutes mes différences
Tous ces défauts qui sont autant de chances
On sera jamais des standards, des gens bien comme il faut
Je te donne ce que j’ai, ce que je vaux.

I can give you the force of my ancestral pride
The will to go on when I’m hurt deep inside
Whatever the feeling, whatever the way
It helps me go on from day to day
Je te donne nos doutes et notre indicible espoir
Les questions que les routes ont laissées dans l’histoire
Nos filles sont brunes et l’on parle un peu fort
Et l’humour et l’amour sont nos trésors.

Je te donne…
Je te donne, donne, donne ce
que je suis.

I can give you my voice bred with rhythm and soul
Je te donne mes notes je te donne ma voix
The songs that I love and the stories I’ve told
Oh, ce que j’imagine et ce que je crois
I can make you feel good even when I am down
Les raison
s qui me portent et stupide espoir
My force is a platform that you can climb on
Une épaule fragile et forte à la fois

Je te donne, oui
Je te donne
Tout ce que je vaux
Ce que je suis
Mes dons, mes défauts,
Mes plus belles chances,
Mes différences.

Israel is again one of these people my friend Xavier told me about.
What I find interesting about Israel is that he is active in the agile community and he is a professor at the university. Yes you can find agile people in very suprising places…

 

What is something people usually don’t know about you but has influenced you in who you are?

Having grown up in a family of software developers and after finishing high school I wanted to continue with a college degree in software development. My first semester at college I failed some subjects which was devastating for a kid that was never used to failing at school before and who was used to being one of the best students of class. I remember that as a kid I was frustrated and embarrassed and that I seriously thought about changing to another career. Probably changing career would have taken me to a different path in life, a path away from software development. Fortunately I decided to continue and it didn’t take me so long to find the rhythm of college to enjoy and discover the big passion I feel until today for software development.

If you had not been in IT, what would have become of you?

Not easy to know but probably teaching. That is something I also like a lot and probably if I had not been in IT, I would be teaching.

What is your biggest challenge and why is it a good thing for you?

Listening without interrupting. I am still working to improve this aspect of myself, because when working with people, coaching or teaching, you need to listen more than talk.

What drives you ?

Love for family and passion for technology

What is your biggest achievement?

I think I have had some good achievements in my life but having nice kids and family is one of the biggest.

What is the last book you have read?

Definitely it’s not going to be the last one :-), but I recently read Open Space Technology A User’s guide by Harrison Owen.

What question do you think I should also ask and what is the answer?

What has your passion for IT driven you to do that you hadn’t thought to do before?

I like to build and grow communities. I worked as a founding member of the organization team of the the Latin American agile conference (Agiles2008).  I still help on the organization of this conference.
I also started the agile community in my country Bolivia and more recently I organized courses and events for the first Agile Open Bolivia that took place in 2012.

Whom do you think I should ask next?

June 2012

Cochabamba, Bolivia

If you like these answers, please consider buying our book: who is agile

I believe Julien Mazloum is a great addition to our Agile community. Having met him several years ago in Beijing, I truly value his passion and vision. With that tireless passion, Julien has been one of the driving forces in bringing Agile development to China. He is a strong supporter of the growth and maturity of Agile. Julien has devoted himself to Agile by supporting the growth of Agile coaches within China and by inviting Agile coaches from outside China to come in to share their experiences. I’m grateful to know Julien. I’m proud I survived one of his Peking Duck dinners! And I am happy to have the honor of introducing him in the “Who is Agile?” book

Jean Tabaka

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What is something people usually don’t know about you but has influenced you in who you are?

I love acting. Comedy to be more specific. Since I was kid in fact. I was and still am a big fan of Louis de Funes. What amazes me the most in an actor is the strength of representing all possible bad aspects of everybody’s personality, all these things that we all want to hide. I just love the characters who show all of these aspects in a humoristic way. All at once. I was co-producer and actor for 4 years with a non-professional theater company (La TRAC). Amazing experience of team work, passion and achievement. The only reason I stopped my involvement with this company that was in some way my family is because I decide to move to China but that is already another story.

If you had not been in IT, what would have become of you?

  • A mathematician or a clown/humorist. But I have to say these jobs are much harder work than IT.
  • Most probably an entrepreneur of some sort. Anyway, these two things are really important for me:
  • Being able to “create things” every day.
  • Making people feel good – especially kids. To some extent that explains why evolving into a coach makes sense to me.

What is your biggest challenge and why is it a good thing for you?

What I am doing now, both personally and with my company (OutSofting) : Living in China and making a successful business while promoting Agile development there. This includes being husband, a father, a coach and an entrepreneur who wishes to do like any startup entrepreneur (transform his startup into a sustainable business).

What drives you ?

I would say 2 things:

What is your biggest achievement?

Hearing students of my courses tell me how using Agile development positively changed their lives and reconciled them with their job and their profession.

What is the last book you have read?

The fifth discipline fieldbook. For a book written in 1994, it is just a shame that most companies still do not apply anything of this. I also feel bad, [not)hing of this was taught](http://thinkexist.com/quotation/nothing_that_is_worth_knowing_can_be_taught/255809.html in the MBA classes I took in 2005-2006. All of this seems so natural for anybody helping in an Agile transformation but yet… we are still far from applying this in the corporate world

What question do you think I should also ask and what is the answer?

Why did I choose software development? Because I find it amazing and exciting to have such a quick loop between an idea and the realization of this idea. Quicker than in any other discipline.

Whom do you think I should ask next?

June 2012

Beijing, China