9th Annual Agile Tour London

Live & Online: 21 to 22 October 2021

‘Breaking Silos’

As Agile enters its 20s, it’s time we stop looking at it as a team-based or department-based activity, or something just for IT. It is a collective mindset that must see us break down walls and work together towards organisational agility. It’s time to recognise each business has three pillars — people, business and technology — and that organisations will topple without focusing on all three working together toward shared objectives.

In its ninth year, Agile Tour London will continue to expand our own goals around breaking silos and increasing communication. And as we’ve done with the last four unique online events, it will be completely LIVE and intentionally interactive, with keynotes, panels and talks recorded in Zoom Meeting, and all workshops, after-talk discussions and networking activities unrecorded in our self-organised virtual venue Spatial.Chat.

Get your tickets on Eventbrite — while they last!

Aims of this event

  • To be interactive — no webinars, no pre-recordings
  • To be diverse and inclusive — we are looking for new voices to add to our community
  • To maintain a community size and feel
  • To be a safe space for people to be their true selves and to experiment*
  • To create a totally unique, memorable experience
  • To open an active discussion around effective communication and collaboration within teams and across organisations and communities
  • To share personal experiences with teams, technologies and processes

Get your tickets while they last!

*Please read our Code of Conduct before considering joining us.

Agile Tour London 2021 Schedule

Check out our spectacular two days of three keynotes, 24 talks and seven workshops. This year we have five key themes:

  • Continuous Delivery and Flow
  • Frameworks and Patterns
  • Breaking Silos
  • Team Collaboration
  • Culture

Day One: Thursday 21 October, 2021, Live and Online

BST Zoom Meeting Zoom Meeting SpatialChat Virtual Venue
1100 Fishbowl: Psychological Safety vs Accountability by Giles Lindsay
1200 Livestream Panel: Psychological Safety vs Accountability As strong as Jericho walls! Breaking silos in a traditional HR department by Norma Lidia Acevedo Lopez Workshop: How you can address hazardous attitude cultures through targeted feedback by Dr. Andrew Brown and Jimmy McCauley
1300  30-min Break  15-min Coffee Chat
1330 From peer pressure to peer power by Marian O’Brien

Tech Tribalism – why we should all learn to communicate in the same language by Claire Walkley

Case Study: Things heard and seen: Ericsson experiences in hardware and embedded software development by Eva Hedin

Agile and metrics: Can we measure improvements? by Antonio Cobo

Workshop: Create an Agile World through a Heart of Agile Assessment by Sheetal Thaker and Sole Pinter
1430 Midday Keynote: Esther Derby

Of Silos & Specialisation

1530  30-min Break  15-min Coffee Chat
1600 How Space Shapes Collaboration: Breaking silos, keeping team identities by Patricia Salgado Peláez

Using Communities of Practices to open up silos for better outcomes! by Katrina Novakovic

The Space Between – Embracing Uncertainty As You Journey Towards Agility by Christina Thomas

Conditions for continuous transformation by Dean Latchana

Workshop: Visual Thinking for Agile by Alexandra Oporto d’Ugard and Christian Harmsen
1700  Evening Keynote: Gene Kim The Unicorn Project, And The Structure and Dynamics Of Great Organizations
1800  Remote Games by Modulearn

Day Two: Friday 22 October, 2021, Live and Online

BST Zoom Meeting Zoom Meeting SpatialChat Virtual Venue
1100 Activity: Playing with the Agile mindset by Corrado Dex De Santis
1200  Morning Keynote: Simon Wardley

Agile is a cult, here’s how to escape.

1300  30-min Break  15-min Coffee Chat
1330 Busting Silos with Mobius Loop by Scott Seivwright and Monica Ugalde

Innovation must eat the world! How to introduce innovation into the DNA of 21st century companies by Almudena Rodriguez Pardo

The Digital Flow Organisation by Philippe Guenet and Sheetal Thaker (30 min talk + 15 min discussion) Workshop: The Good Traveller’s Guide to Collaboration by Christine Thomson and Jonas Berends
1430 The Agile Leadership Circle by Tomasz ‘TK’ Kropiewnicki

360 Feedback as a Team Bonding Exercise by Gwenno Haf Hughes

Case Study: Code, Measure, Improve, Iterate. Building high performing teams through continuous improvement at William Hill by Kristina Verney

Playful Leadership: How playing with productivity means working less and achieving more by Portia Tung

Workshop: The Agile Tao by Dov Tsal
1530  30-min Break  15-min Coffee Chat
1600 Case Study: Breaking silos: A SAFe experience by Antonio Amador

Involving the off-shore teams in refinement by Derk-Jan de Grood

Case Study: A customer-focussed realignment based on cognitive load at Mimecast by Burak Cetin and Graham Uphill

The agile leadership mindset: Embracing continuous change as a leader by Milena May

Workshop: Busting Silos: Boundary Spanning for Agility by Michele Madore and Kerri Sutey
1700 Create learning organisations through NeuroAgility by Savita Pahuja and Mariete Sequera Hernandez Livestream Panel on Managing the Culture of Hybrid Work Workshop: What does it mean to invite people to the party? by Mun-Wai Chung and JF Unson
1800  Retrospective

Tickets start at £35, while they last!

Agile Tour London is organised by the Aginext Community. Each ticket comes with an invitation to our Slack community for before, during and after the event. Check out our previous events: Agile Tour London 2020, Aginext Conference 2021 and Subscribe to the Aginext YouTube Channel to see some of our event highlights.

Follow us at @AginextIO and search #Aginext and #ATLDN to see for yourself how our interactive, unique events turn out.


Details of each session:

  • Keynote: Of Silos & Specialisation by Esther Derby: We want to break down silos to increase agility, collaboration, innovation. But why do we have them in the first place? What reinforces them and holds them in place? Will more communication help? Or do we need a more fundamental re-orientation? These are the questions we’ll explore in this interactive keynote.
  • Keynote: The Unicorn Project, And The Structure and Dynamics Of Great Organizations by Gene Kim: I’ve spent 22 years studying high-performing technology organizations. In The Unicorn Project, I attempt to frame what I’ve learned studying technology leaders adopting DevOps principles and patterns in large, complex organizations, often having to fight deeply entrenched orthodoxies. And yet, despite huge obstacles, they create incredibly effective and innovative teams that create beacons of greatness that inspire us all.In my previous books, I’ve focused on principles and practices (e.g., Three Ways, Four Types of Work). However, I’ve always wanted to describe the spectrum of cultural, experiential and value decisions we make that either enable greatness, or create chronic suffering and underperformance.
  • Keynote: Agile is a cult, here’s how to escape by Simon Wardley:  In topic we shall explore the subject of situational awareness and how this leads us to a conclusion that there no such thing as one size fits all.
  • Fishbowl: Psychological Safety vs Accountability by Giles Lindsay: We use fishbowls as a way to allow everyone to both get used to our self-organised virtual venue for workshops and to start to get to know each other.
    A Fishbowl is a structured conversation where everyone has a chance to be a panelist and an audience member. In-person this is done by four seats, with always one empty as folks discuss a certain self-organized topic or theme. Only those sat in these speaker chairs can take part in the conversation (turning on their megaphone in the tool). For a virtual fishbowl, we are using virtual venue tool SpatialChat (please use in Chrome) which allows us to do the same.
    Agile is about people over processes and good leadership is about creating a safe work environment where people can be and bring their best, most honest selves.
    We have reached this point where burnout is seen as something inherent to our work, instead of what it actually is — the negative consequence of an unsafe, un-inclusive working environment. Something that for a lot of people has gotten even worse over the last year. Metrics may change, but the most successful organizations prioritise Psychological Safety.
    Let’s bring our whole selves to this discussion!
  • From peer pressure to peer power by Marian O’Brien: “As we look at smarter ways to embrace the future, How can we harness the power of the collective, span boundaries and optimise opportunities to learn from each other, collaborate, leverage our collective intelligence, harness innovation and to ultimately maximize the whole, being greater than the sum of its parts. “
  • Psychological Safety vs Accountability Panel: In a follow up to a workshop of the same topic by Container Solutions at our last event, we have invited Han Cork, Gitte Klitgaard, Leanne Creasey, Andrea Dobson and Ben Linders to participate in this panel that for the first 45 minutes will be livestreamed to the Aginext YouTube (subscribe!) — with questions from our ATLDN audience! — and then 15 minutes unrecorded discussion exclusive to the event. Let’s find a way to strike this crucial balance together while fostering a safe working enviornment.
  • Tech Tribalism by Claire Walkley: “The best way to avoid system downtime is to never make modifications to the system” This seems like perfect logic, but in a world of innovation; not moving means that you are really moving backwards. But how do you balance the need for change, with the need for stability – and when do you decide you should do it anyway? How do you make sure that metrics inform decision making and not define how teams behave and how do you foster an environment of experimentation when you have a live system to maintain? In this talk we show how, through shared language and understanding we can assess the value of change, as well as the likelihood and impact of all out disaster; allowing us to make the right decisions on what’s worth the risk and learn how to reach agreement when emotions and stakes are high.
  • Ericsson experiences in hardware and embedded software development by Eva Hedin: Working with solution integration of site products at Ericsson gives me the opportunity to deep dive into the way of working in an extreme challenging area, the interface between software and hardware. Do we work agile? or do we work lean? or is our WoW “agilean”? Is this important? What is important is that we are able to integrate hardware and software development with a cross-border team setup, thrived by a company culture that supports working X-functional with different perspectives. I would like to share with you my thoughts and experiences out of the trenches on how to work cross-functional with product development of embedded products.
  • Involving the off-shore teams in refinement by Derk-Jan de Grood: Refinement makes development more predictable, leads to better solutions and enables the Product Owner to set the right priorities. Unfortunately, I see many teams that do not unlock the full potential of refinement. Not only is the time spent on refinement often limited, many of the refinement meetings I join are inefficient. When working with distributed teams or teams with strong functional silo’s collaboration is limited. In this talk I will focus on the following topics• How we can boost the potential of Refinement by organising it as a process rather than a meeting
    • Introduction of challenging questions that can be used to prepare your refinement and ensure inclusion of the different disciplines
    • And last but not least, how you can involve the off-site team members of distributed teamsJoin this session if you are an Agile Coach of SM and want to help your team(s) to get more out of refinement. If you are a PO and feel a need to boost quality and predictability, or if you are a member of a distributed team and want to involve your fellow team members making better solutions.  Key learnings:
    • The role of PO, Business Analysts, Testers and team members during refinement
    • A well proven step plan that could be a template for you own refinement process that works with multiple teams
    • Challenges with distributed teams and how reduce language and cultural barriers
  • Create an Agile World through a Heart of Agile Assessment by Sheetal Thaker and Sole Pinter: Business agility is a journey and organisations need to continuously seek to improve even when they are ‘doing’ agile already. Things are continuously changing, people, processes and products will evolve and a company is never ‘done’, there will always be more to do. Agile World and The Heart of Agile has teamed up to bring you a new kind of company assessment that allows you to constantly adapt the way you operate. Focusing on the four pillars Delivery, Improve, Collaborate and Reflect we will help you uncover intelligence that inspires action. Not only that, the Heart of Agile Compass will direct you. Join us for this one time opportunity to take part in the assessment and return to work with strong tools and practices that will help you lead the agile way.
  • As strong as Jericho walls! Breaking silos in a traditional HR department by Norma Lidia Acevedo Lopez: ‘Together we can go farther’ quotes one of the values of a young company in the international ecommerce sector; in similar ways numerous companies include ‘unity’ as a key element in their value quotes. No doubt, any organization accepts that it is vital if we want to succeed. But unity can be a tough challenge, specially when it comes to support or geographical distributed departments inside the enterprises. There are strong recommendations from process experts to break silos in order to achieve organizational unity. However, there are silos that are surrounded by walls as strong as those of Jericho! In this interactive talk we will learn from the experiences of a local Human Resources department, devoted to HR operations and recruiting, which evolved to a Global People and Organization with the mission to act as a catalyst within the enterprise and be co-designer of the overall enterprise agenda. We will begin by understanding why the Jericho walls existed, what made them so strong and how they have been weakening and falling down. We are still on the journey and we also want to hear your experiences and learn. Come, let’s learn to break down walls together!
  • The next feedback loop in Agile: Governance, Risk and Compliance by Anko Tijman: Many organizations on their way becoming more Agile, struggle on different levels and areas. After focusing on the teams and individuals, and then scaling teams and organizing portfolio management, one missing feedback loop within the organization is Governance, Risk and Compliance (GRC). In this session we will discuss our professional view on Agile teams and effective interactions with GRC professionals and show that this will lead to more grip on their work for both sides. Where the mindsets in both backgrounds to some may seem as incompatible, we believe they are compliant to each other and will reinforce each other. Traditional GRC is focused on compliance and validating the original, agreed upon plan based on a severe lack of trust. This collides with the vibrant customer-driven atmosphere in Agile teams, dedicated to delivering the most value every sprint. We will show that on any level in any organization the Agile way of working will result in more grip on Agile for GRC professionals and more grip on compliance for Agile teams. Along the lines of the McKinsey 7S model we will discuss what we found to be an effective role of GRC when it comes to dealing with Agile teams. The approach of GRC should be widened to not only the diagnostic control system but also encompass a Belief system, a Boundary system and an Interactive Control system (Simons, 2000). This will lead to a GRC approach that is not only desk checking but a meaningful framework and dialogue system around agile teams. Because now a dialogue has started between these worlds. From this, Agile teams will be able to deal with better, more meaningful organizational guidelines. The necessary change to make this new relationship work also comes from Agile teams: becoming more transparent and be open minded to colleagues who might not feel about Agile the way you do. Agile teams will need to learn to help GRC professionals asking the right questions, being sincerely interested in a just-enough-controlled way of working. This requires listening, creativity and commitment. Ultimately this will lead to an organization that is more goal driven, more effective and more internally aligned on the business strategy. Finally, we will highlight effective questions to use as conversation starters.