Paul Rayner

Paul Rayner is one of the world's leading Domain-Driven Design (DDD) practitioners. He is a developer, instructor, coach and popular conference speaker. He co-founded DDD Denver and is founder and chairman of the Explore DDD Conference. His company Virtual Genius LLC, provides training and coaching in DDD for agile teams. Paul is from Perth, Australia, but chooses to live, work and play with his wife and two children, in Denver, Colorado. He (occasionally) blogs at and tweets with an Australian accent at @ThePaulRayner.

NewCrafts 2018

Fighting the Invisible Enemy

  • Talk
  • Lean
  • Practices
  • Agile

Do you ever feel like development work seems to involve a lot of waiting? Waiting for builds to finish. Waiting for your team members to complete the code you need. Waiting for testing to be completed? Waiting for other teams, or for approvals to happen? Sigh. Yawn. The typical approach is to try to make the coding more efficient or start new work. But what if all these wait-states are actually where we should be focusing our improvement efforts first? These invisible piles of unfinished work slow us down far more than we realize, sucking team productivity, and making everything take longer than it should.

Don Reinertsen says, The enemy of flow is the invisible and unmeasured queues that undermine all aspects of product development performance, but how can we fight an invisible enemy? Most development teams remain blissfully unaware of the negative impact of these invisible queues on productivity, or how to deal with them effectively.

This talk focuses on demonstrating the presence and the negative impact of these invisible queues in the work of real teams. Task boards are great for helping teams visualize and coordinate their work, but they don't show the full picture. In this session, you’ll see a live demo of visualizing and troubleshooting team development queues as timelines with Flow. I can’t get you out of boring meetings, but I can help you reduce waste so you can spend more time doing the coding you love.

Room: Keynote - Time: 5/17/2018 9:30:00 AM

Finding Team Flow

  • Pre-conference-workshop
  • Lean
  • Practices
  • Agile

Mihály Csíkszentmihályi defines flow state as an “optimal state of consciousness where we feel our best and perform our best.” We've likely all experienced this flow state individually at various times, but how do we achieve this at the team level?

In this hands-on advanced workshop, you'll explore how to apply Lean principles of flow to your everyday development work. We’ll take a practical approach: participants will be working on real–world problems. We won't be covering the basics of Scrum, Kanban or any frameworks etc. There will be no easy answers. Instead, you’ll learn how to ask the right questions, and how to evaluate different models of team flow. It doesn't matter if your team does Scrum, Kanban, or something else, we'll cover practical techniques you can take back and apply immediately to your team situation.

Learning Goals

This workshop is designed for experienced agile developers who want to move beyond basic Kanban, Scrum and task boards to a deeper understanding of how to apply Lean theory and practices in their context. We'll cover:

  • Modeling and visualizing your team's development process
  • Visualizing and troubleshooting feature development using timelines
  • Story slicing techniques to enable smaller batch sizes and faster feedback
  • Applying Systems Thinking and problem–solving techniques to team productivity challenges
  • How small improvements in limiting work in progress (WIP) and reducing time spent waiting can lead to major improvements in performance.
  • Challenges and approaches for limiting work-in-progress (WIP)

There will be individual and group exercises. We'll also be working in pairs, using the application Flow as a teaching tool to visualize and measure the presence and impact of these hidden queues on team productivity. You'll review actual work timelines for several teams to see a radically clear view of team progress and areas where work is getting stuck. You'll leave with a deeper understanding of lean principles, and a checklist of practical steps to confront and manage queues in your own team's work.

Participant Requirements

You are an experienced software developer with solid experience on agile teams and desire to learn and grow. Bring your laptop to share with a partner for our pair-based discovery sessions using Flow. It’s recommended to read “The Principles of Product Development Flow” (Reinertsen, 2009), but not essential.

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Code of conduct

Our conference is dedicated to providing a harassment-free conference experience for everyone, regardless of gender, gender identity and expression, age, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, or religion (or lack thereof). We do not tolerate harassment of conference participants in any form. Sexual language and imagery is not appropriate for any conference venue, including talks, workshops, parties, Twitter and other online media. Conference participants violating these rules may be sanctioned or expelled from the conference without a refund at the discretion of the conference organisers.