Though I have been associated with the Large Scale scrum (LeSS) community for about five years (though the “community” did not exist, I can think of my association with like minded folks) this is my first LeSS conference. While I used to attend a lot of conferences in the past, I have started focusing more on deep learning (by attending focused workshops) than focusing on conferences. But this year, I had to make an exception for the LeSS conference. Why? (a) It was the first LeSS conference in North America, (b) It was not very far, and (c) I was thinking that I might meet some of the smartest people in the LeSS community whom I may not meet otherwise, and (d) I have heard that it is a “team based” conference (unlike other conferences where you are on your own), and I wanted to find out what the heck it was. I was not disappointed.
The venue itself was very different from the conventional Agile conferences – not a hotel. That definitely caught my attention!! I was pleasantly suprirsed to see both Howard Sublet (the new Chief Product Owner from Scrum Alliance) and Eric Engelmann (the Chairman of the Board of Director of Scrum Alliance ). Howard and I had good discussions on LeSS, Scrum Alliance, the marketplace, and scaling.
Some sessions that I attended and major takeaways:
- Day 1 morning keynote – Nokia LTE implementation – Takeaway – Yes, you can do Scrum with more than 5000 engineers
- Day 2 keynote by Craig Larman. I always find Craig’s thinking fascinating and learnt quite a few interesting facts about cognitive biases (and strategies to overcome them).
- LeSS Games – component team and feature team simulation lead by Pierluigi Pugliese – very interesting simulation – I used a variation of this in my CSM class past weekend and people liked it. I hope to write about sometime, in the coming days.
- LeSS roles exercise by Michael James – I have always been a fan of MJ. Very interesting exercise which reinforces the concept of LeSS roles
- TDD in a flip chart – Guess I was there again, with MJ. Well, just learned that you do not need a computer to learn about TDD.
- An open space session with Howard Sublett on LeSS and Scrum Alliance partnership (yours truly was the scribe) – Lot of interesting discussions on market, strategy, and positioning of the LeSS brand. I personally got some insights from Rafael Sabbagh and Viktor Grgic.
Two days was short!! Time flew away. It was a great experience!! And I wish we could have a North American LeSS conference every year!!