Agile provides greater opportunities for control and risk management and offers unique benefits that traditional methods miss, such as:
Transparency with daily standup meetings discussing work status, risk, and pace.
How a clear definition of done drives acceptance by all key stakeholders.
Measuring performance and benefits of working solutions during project delivery.
Iteratively testing to gain authentic feedback on solution requirements and stability.
Regular retrospectives that drive continuous improvement into the team.
In this course, you will learn how these levers of control far exceed traditional management methods of earned value management (EVM), which relies on estimates and no changes in scope. We'll discuss how the key to unlocking the control potential is to learn what to manage, and how to measure it. This answer varies across levels of management, separating the concerns between the organization and the team. For the organization, the focus is on what capabilities are delivered and how to measure return on investment (ROI) capabilities provide. For teams, it’s a focus on team velocity and how to ensure its measurement is useful for diagnosing internal and external productivity constraints.
Upon successful completion of this course, learners can earn 10 Professional Development Unit (PDU) credits, which are recognized by the Project Management Institute (PMI). PDU credits are essential to those looking to maintain certification as a Project Management Professional (PMP).
Week 1: The first week of the control course examines the reason for controlling projects, why traditional controls such as Earned Value Management fail so often, and the three key components to any controlling process: value, constraints, and verification. Systems Engineering models are considered for their effectiveness in controlling, with an emphasis on the predominant controlling approach, the V-Model, and how it equivocates testing with development.
Week 2: The second week examines how control is managed across the project lifecycle, with the three Ps of management: people, process, and product. Real-world approaches and tools are discussed for all three levers across varying staffing approaches, release and sprint processes for quality assurance, and the use of product-level tools for quality control.
Week 3: The third week drives home the need to “begin with the end in mind” by closing User Stories incrementally using a Definition of Done that links the three Ps together across each sprint cycle (planning, execution, and control).
Week 4: The final fourth week addresses controlling Agile processes at scale, from sampling and building intuition across Agile team ceremonies, to managing team decisions and performance, and even portfolios of projects using simplified metrics. The fourth week will also look at how to align portfolio and project management metrics to an organization’s strategy as a means of managing up the risks of being defunded or constrained by corporate policy.
The material was insightful, and I especially liked the lessons on anti-fragility. I also liked the concepts on protecting teams: People, Process, Product. My only issue with the course is that I felt that quiz and test questions were not geared toward testing/reviewing my knowledge of course materials, but rather at seeing how confusing the questions could be constructed. I know it's important to make the tests challenging, but I felt like I was watching more for tricky-worded questions that I was at looking for answers.
Also, I kind of wish the final exam would be an all-or-nothing event like it was with the first two courses. While it's nice to get unlimited tries at the questions, I feel it lessens the overall value of the certificate, knowing that anyone could pay the money and force their way through to a passing grade, simply by guessing enough times. I sort of feel like I paid for a participation trophy.
I'd just like to add the following points to improve. The amount of information covered on the course was, in my opinion, much more than on the past courses, making the course longer than one might be comfortable with, especially after being used to the "old" workflow.
I really enjoyed this course. I liked the videos to help to understand and remember the study material. John is a great lecturer, he tries to make the material as interesting as possible. The exam of this course is challenging, but fair. Thank you.
Elements of this course are excellent and provide a good understanding of anti-fragility and agile. It's useful to have worked examples from the presenter's own experience which illustrate particular points.
Negatives for me can be summarised as follows:
- Transcripts of the videos are available but have a number of errors, including one which is completely the wrong transcript for the video being shown.
- Some of the descriptions of principles are not the clearest, and the course could be made better if there were more attention paid to really making it as simple to understand as possible.
- A number of the review questions focused on whether you understood the specifics of an anecdote rather than the principle being described.
Valuable information was presented both in video lectures and in comprehensive summaries. I appreciated the outstanding content, approach, organization and delivery. The inclusion of different types of companies and organizations in the course material plus so many real-world examples made the Agile concepts easier to understand and place into value. The Agile PM course will definitely help me at work.
Great information, enthusiastically delivered. Some points were glossed over, though, and the number of grammatical and spelling errors throughout the course materials made reviewing them fairly painful. Still, despite that, I'd recommend the course to anyone who wants to become a leader in their organization, whether officially holding the title of manager or not.
Completed all 5 courses, some of the material you'll see repeated from course to course (primarily the case studies). But it's nice to see how earlier topics feed into later discussions. Overall I enjoyed the course and did manage to learn a good bit and confirmed a few things for myself on how projects can better managed.
Videos constantly freeze. This delays progress in time completing course. All else was great. Content was awesome. But the channels used to deliver information were not all great. Such as the YouTube videos used to give instruction.
Greggcompleted this course, spending 2 hours a week on it and found the course difficulty to be medium.
Enjoyed the thought processes which challenged some of my more traditional thinking and previous applications on various projects and helped provide insight on some maths on how to work out if something is working.
The course provided powerful tools, whether serving as an employee or entrepreneur. I remain confused by answers to questions related to formulae for (a) lines of communication and (b) integration points.