A catalogue of practices for everyday software and digital products development
About the Book
Complexity Science, together with Lean and Agile Software Development are the three pillars of modern ways of working.
Complexity is considered by many to be the single most important scientific development since general relativity. Complexity Science study systems like weather systems, cities, organisations, and teams. With users, customers and competitors that are hyperconnected, and with the rate of change of the markets and the technology that is constantly accelerating, understanding Complexity Science today is more useful than ever.
While Complexity science literature is very theoretic, this book explores its practical applications in the context of software and digital products development. These practices give you the means to navigate everyday Complexity and to dance with complex systems. This book is for everyone working in software and digital products development, and more specifically for leaders, managers, facilitators (e.g. Scrum Masters and Agile Coaches), and team members.
The practices in this book constitute a practical introduction to Complexity thinking and are a stepping stone to Complexity theory. For those already familiar with it, the practices in this book suggest ways to put Complexity theory in action and to live Complexity.
The practices in Part 1 explore ways to orient self-organisation toward positive outcomes. The practices in Part 2 explore ways to sense and assess the degree of complexity and ways to adapt accordingly. All the remaining practices in Part 3, and they focus on co-creation and collaboration among larger groups, up to the whole organisation.
The practices in this book are inspired by the work of Joseph Pelrine, David S. Alberts, Ralph Stacey, and Dave Snowden. This book also contains original contributions from Dean Latchana, Liz Keogh, and the author himself, Luca Minudel. This book also aspires to be an example that inspires other Complexity practitioners to share other practices that could potentially be added to this book.
This book has been improved thanks to the precious feedback from Joseph Pelrine, Sunil Mundra, Dave Snowden, Brett Ansley, Ilias Bartolini, Carlo Beschi, Maurizio Pedriale, Peter Fessel, Bülent Duagi, Tom Northwood, Antonia Greensides, David Legge, Katya Kolmogorova, Greg Franklin, Corrado De Sanctis, Michael Park, Vicenç García Altés, Simon Reindl.
Note to this final version of the book: This is the final version of this book. And I love it! Errata corrige or minor fixes may follow. Check here for any updates https://leanpub.com/user_dashboard/library
Any feedback is welcome.
Rate and review the book here https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/53843886-living-complexity.
This book is a methodical work, that fills a gap in the extensive - and sometimes difficult to navigate - body of work around complexity, and how different approaches and ideas blend and interact with the world of Agile. I believe its conciseness and structure make it a good companion for Agile coaches, and can be read both cover to cover, as well as by referring to specific parts.
This book can help leaders and managers through organisational change. It supplies the tools they may need to make sense of a complex environment and provides a vocabulary to communicate it. It is a very useful book which leaders will want to reach for as a reference to better understand the theory and then put it into practice.
This catalogue of practices presents and interprets the work of several thought leaders, past and present, in an accessible and concise style whilst demonstrating practical applications of complexity sciences. There is much here to excite agile practitioners, there being an assumption of experience and skill in group practice. I will refer back to this book multiple times and recommend it enthusiastically to those working in the agile sphere.
I went through the first version of the book and really loved those ideas. It was the first time I saw a merger of complex systems and agile teams and it was eye-opening. I loved how it catalogued individual concepts and their applicability. Plus, a great read for nerds in leadership positions.
Good curation of some models and techniques to help Product teams deal better with the complexity in their work.
This is a great book to read and reference time and again. In a clearly structured way, it explores some models around managing complexity and self-organisation in teams and then explores practices to understand your situation and context. It is clearly written, and well-indexed to help you quickly find that nugget that you want to use. It is a great foundation of Complexity and provides a practical approach that is framework agnostic - which makes it even more useful on your reference shelf.
- Why I curated this catalogue
- Who is this catalogue for
- Overview of the key concepts
Part 1: Managing self-organisation and teams
- The Basic model (by Joseph Pelrine)
- The Heat model (by Joseph Pelrine)
- The Flow model (by Joseph Pelrine)
- The ABIDE model (by Dave Snowden)
- C2 Approach Space (by David Alberts)
- Cynefin as a framework for decision making (by Dave Snowden)
Part 2: Assessing and adapting to Complexity
- Sensing Complexity with the Stacey Diagram (by Luca Minudel)
- Estimating Complexity (by Liz Keogh, documented by Liz Keogh)
- RUDE estimation (by Dean Latchana, documented by Dean Latchana)
- Complexity Estimation for a delivery initiative (by Luca Minudel)
- Four points method to make sense of the complexity of requirements (by Dave Snowden)
- Estimates Accuracy with the Cone of uncertainty (by Luca Minudel)
Part 3: Collaborating in Complexity
- Red Team technique (by Dean Latchana, documented by Dean Latchana)
- Culture affinity assessment (by Luca Minudel)
- Lean Inception (by ThoughtWorks)
- Appendix A: Introduction to Complexity, resources
Appendix B: Who is who
- Dean Latchana (Co-author)
- Liz Keogh (Co-author)
- Dave Snowden
- David Alberts
- Joseph Pelrine
- Ralph Douglas Stacey
- Others mentioned in the book
- Appendix C: Mapping the Fearless Change patterns to ABIDE, exercise
- About the Author
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