Archive for December, 2010

Agile Scrum for Managing Creative Projects

December 11, 2010

The discussion here by Kevin Donaldson on Balihoo is about moving away from the factory mentality – in this sense:

Seth Godin uses a broader term in his book Linchpin where he defined a factory as:

“… an organization that has it figured out, a place where people go to do what they are told and earn a paycheck”

When rolling out Scrum process to a team used to waterfall I’m noticing that a lot of team members are not comfortable *not* being told what to do.  Being told what to do is safer, I guess.

“…as business’s mature, it is inevitable that parts of the organization will become a factory –  areas where the work is repeatable and comoditized.  That’s not necessarily a bad thing, however more and more things in modern business cannot be ‘systematized’.  This can be scary to many people that want to work in a job with a map to tell them what to do.   It can also be a thorn in the side of traditional process engineers who love to create process maps for everything.  What some fail to consider is that if a process can be mapped, it is likely that it can be copied and therefor starts a march down the path towards comoditization.

In the creative economy process engineers and the process’s they create can actually reduce operational effectiveness when they attempt to systematize everything in the organization.  Six Sigma works great when trying to create lots and lots of high quality microchips, but it doesn’t work as well in value-add service offerings.  Process engineers can fine tune accounting processes but it doesn’t work as well when trying to create a musical.  Traditional process engineering is valuable but not when it is used like a hammer and every aspect of a business is a considered to be a factory/nail.”

What Magic Really Is

December 1, 2010

I chose this name Twingle kind of spontaneously because I hadn’t known it had sort of sexual connotations (at least according to Urban Dictionary).  I can be obtuse in that way – I also didn’t know for a good few years since I first heard it that “out like a cub scout” meant more than something that just rhymed. And for sure these sorts of conversations make me squeamish and uncomfortable as my meta-rule-set is a bit prim.

The word “Twingle” seems to me to have a magical feeling – that same magical feeling that comes when a circumstance is formed.  That for me is real magic. Creating an environment in the sense that everyone within that environment feels it.  They’re all on the team.  Their minds are in some way one mind, yet differentiated. The trick is not to become attached to that, but to relish it in the moment it exists.  So quickly will it dissipate, like bubbles rising to the surface dissolving once more into the pool of water.

Twingle for me has these connotations:

– State between something becoming something else (such as the state when once we die there is the possibility we recognize and liberate)

– Something ticklish and delightful, exciting in a way that has no yearning, kind of like when you are about to set free down the slope of a roller-coaster, a rushing, unfettered experience

– The thing that Jeannie or Merlin do with their eyes or Bewitched with her twitch, and “bliiirrriiing” something is created or moved, reality is miraculously affected by mind, only here it is minds

I think people often confuse the rush of learning, of heading down the slope on a roller-coaster, of twingle, with something that must consummate in a personal grasping after pleasure in some way such as in sex.  People wish they could experience that in union with each other, but in fact it is the state prior to that conclusion in which there is any union at all. The end point, like death, we experience alone.

In fact, here it might be useful to observe the Nagpas, the real Nagpas, who, for the sake of freeing all sentient beings from suffering, do not grasp after that personally pleasurable (and temporary) state, but sustain their minds in union with their consort in pure bliss.  It is non-dual, meaning, all those appearances of others and self that we seem to experience become the net, become… the fractal… become the nagpa and consort in union.  But I use words here and it is something I think that can only be experienced.  It is, as Wallace Stevens says, “the bird’s fire-fangled feathers dangle down.”

Of Mere Being

The palm at the end of the mind,
Beyond the last thought, rises
In the bronze distance.

A gold-feathered bird
Sings in the palm, without human meaning,
Without human feeling, a foreign song.

You know then that it is not the reason
That makes us happy or unhappy.
The bird sings. Its feathers shine.

The palm stands on the edge of space.
The wind moves slowly in the branches.
The bird’s fire-fangled feathers dangle down.

— Wallace Stevens, 1954