[OSList] OpenSpace Agility: How Agile can be successful. First Workshop in Germany, June from 13th to 15th

Harold Shinsato via OSList oslist at lists.openspacetech.org
Tue Mar 8 15:35:35 PST 2016

Thank you so much for posting about this topic, Harrison!

And I'm so grateful for hearing Birgitt's tale. It has opened my mind, 
and heart.

If you didn't hear this story from Daniel, I'll offer it here. It is my 
own *PAINFUL* experience with Capital A "Agile" in software development. 
There is a huge amount of discontent in the Agile space, even as it 
continues to grow and obtain mind share. Part of the way that Daniel 
phrases it (and I do too) is that Mandated Agile is very bad. Deadly. It 
crushes engagement. I think it has also been crushing the true spirit of 

And what Birgitt is offering from her experience is amazing. I feel 
humbled to have not recognized how applicable her story has been to what 
I've been trying to work on with helping organizations. But perhaps it 
has been my own journey especially the last month that has awakened me 
so much more to Birgitt's phenomenal work. I have ordered her book from 
Amazon (The Genuine Contact Way: Nourishing a Culture of Leadership). 
And I hope to get to one of these workshops soon as well.

For me - "Open Space Technology" - the tool - is amazing. Resilient. But 
the "Tool" is not the point. The point is "open space". Our innate 
humanity is what is opened in a good OS event. That's why it's true - 
the biggest Axiom of all in this work - "it's all open space"!

While I'm offering praise and thanks - I'd like to add Diana Larsen to 
the mix. Her work at finding the real connection to the Spirit of Agile 
- in connecting Agile to Open Space - has been a huge influence on me. 
The AgileOpen program as supported by the Agile Alliance has brought 
Agile coaches, practitioners, and learners together in Open Space in 
cities around the world for 10 years now. It was only at two Agile Open 
events this year - one in Seattle and one in San Diego - that I've 
started to understand at an even deeper the powerful people element at 
the heart of Agile. It's right there in the manifesto - but it continues 
to be taken to greater lengths by practitioners and explorers in the 
Agile space.

Perhaps a couple elements in the Agile space that resonate deeply 
(beyond of course the wonderful OpenSpace Agility) are the work around 
"Mob Programming" and "#NoEstimates". Explaining these two things are 
way beyond the scope of this thread - but returning what Birgitt speaks 
to - it is how important are the holistic elements of our connection to 
each other take us beyond any particular process. Encouraging leadership 
in our community - not just the formal management - is what makes things 
like "Mobbing" (multiple people working together at one computer and one 
keyboard), and "#NoEstimates" (which is never promising what we don't 
really understand but instead focus on continuous delivery of value).

These newer evolutions of Agility - do indeed maybe make "Scrumming" 
working too hard. Though I do think Scrum can be helpful, the process 
was never what made Agile truly Agile. "Individuals and Interactions 
over Processes and Tools"!!!

     Warm regards,

On 3/8/16 1:03 PM, Harrison Owen via OSList wrote:
> the middle of all that... but I do have some thoughts about Agile and Open Space.
> I get that Dan and many others understand Open Space to be a useful tool/mechanism/means for "Agile Introduction." Agile Introduction, is of course, magic words for the initiated and obscure for some of the rest of us... Be that as it may... I agree. It works. AND....
> Just to be a little provocative.... I might suggest that Open Space is not the tool (means, mechanism), but the context. Of course I should probably remove the capitals and just do "os" -- pointing to what for me is "the magic sauce." That would be the process of Self Organization. Or as I said (sort of) in some other place: Real Agility is the fully conscious and intentional realization of the power of self organization. So open space (small o, s) is simply the context in which everything happens. And things work much better (agile, effective, efficient, etc) when we cheerfully align ourselves with the way things are -- as opposed to "fighting the system" to make it the way we think it should be.
> Could it then be that SCRUMMING is working much too hard? Might it be better to carefully note and study what we can do naturally before trying to improve it? We could then take all that as a "base" -- and who knows where we might end up?
> Harrison
> Winter Address
> 7808 River Falls Drive
> Potomac, MD 20854

Harold Shinsato
harold at shinsato.com <mailto:harold at shinsato.com>
twitter: @hajush <http://twitter.com/hajush>
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