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The Lean Agile Scotland Conference 2015

02-Nov-2015 13:00:00 Lean Lean Agile Scotland Agile Events
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What happens when you are a visual illustrator and you get invited to illustrate the Lean Agile Scotland conference? Well, it’s simple. You clutch your pens and travel north of the border (for the second time) to this prestigious conference to capture key messages from the talks in pictures. This year’s conference spanned over 3 days, with 67 speakers and four tracks of workshops/ presentations, so it was no surprise that the canvas was over 30 feet long.

I was so blown away with the line up and learning from this year’s Lean Agile Scotland Conference that I couldn’t resist sharing just some of the illustrations with you. As always, it’s been a pleasure and an honour to be part of such a great event, to listen to excellent speakers as they challenge your thinking whilst enticing the audience to observe the canvas as it organically grows throughout the event.

Leading Agilists such as Will Evans and Jabe Bloom returned to the stage to present insightful cutting edge theories that continue to blow my mind, whilst Chris Matts and Clarke Ching had the entire audience hooked with side splitting stories and analogies which resulted in outbursts of laughter from beginning to end. The vision of Chris lunging into the perfect Wonder Woman stance before proclaiming that “Your body language shapes who you are”, is still imprinted within my mind, whilst I fear I will never stop whistling along to the infamous muppets 90’s hit thanks to Clarke’s final keynote… “Phenomenon do do dododo”!

All of these talks were delicately blended alongside sessions that were more aligned for you if you are new to Lean and Agile ways of working. What could be more enticing and fun than a workshop by Ian Carroll on Kanban essentials that includes customized M&M’s!

Whilst the conference hosted a diverse range of topics, you could not refrain from noticing that ‘Culture’, ‘Teams’, ‘Individuals’ and ‘Collaboration’ emerged as fundamental themes that resonated across many of the sessions, including the awesome presentations by Richard Sheridon and Katherine Kirk.

Sallyann Freudenberg continued with the theme of teams and individuals with a thought provoking talk on Neuro-Diversity and Agile. She went to great depths to express the mechanisms of the human brain, leaving the listeners with the poignant message that there are different types of thinkers, ‘Different NOT less’!

Amongst the mass of interesting topics to choose from, you could find great inspiration in a talk by Mick Barry who discussed the HSBC Scotland Schools programme he created to help support schools with their IT and Coding curriculum. He recited his journey and the way that he had introduced Agile practices such as Kanban to support the students to visualize and understand the development cycle. What was so impactful was the way that the pupils embraced Agile principles by naturally collaborating and demonstrating some of the most effective feedback loops Mick had ever experienced within the industry.

Whilst listening I was reminded of the talk John Miller presented earlier in the year at the Scrum Gathering in Phoenix, some of you might be familiar with it. John had introduced Scrum within a school to pivot the lives of some of the most disadvantaged students within Phoenix. In his scenario Scrum inspired the school to change the way they worked by empowering the pupils to take control of their learning.

It is no doubt that the masterful assortment of talks and mass turnout of attendees/ facilitators who travelled from all corners of the earth to be at LASCOT15 was greatly attributed to the efforts Chris McDermott (Agile Coach and Lean Agile Conference Organiser) played in reaching out within the Agile Community and beyond. It is therefore no surprise that the conference was a great success for a 4th year running.

At the end of the conference Chris kindly offered sections of the canvas I’d drawn to any attendees that promised to hang the artwork within their offices. Duncan Smith (Development Team Leader at Amazon) took up the offer and became the proud owner of one of the sections, which is now happily situated within the Amazon UK offices.

This is a mere snapshot of this awe-inspiring event. I would highly recommend checking out some of the videos and write-ups on the talks to find out more.

Have you been to the Lean Agile Scotland Conference? Do you use Lean and Agile methods or consider doing so? Find out more about our Lean and Agile training courses today.


Stuart Young

Stuart Young

Stuart is a professional Business Visualiser with extensive experience and a deep-rooted appreciation for methods of Design Thinking and Agile Ways of working. By combining both creative and analytical skills Stuart contributes to team strategic visioning workshops, planning sessions and retrospectives by offering captivating visuals that crystallise ideas and learning. Stuart facilitates a suite of Design Thinking, Visual Thinking and Agile ways of working workshops to encourage teams to work more visually, making the intangible tangible, catalysing customer centric creativity and driving product innovation. Stuart joined Radtac in 2015 where he continues to assist individuals, teams and organisations with an array of Innovation and visualisation services. Read more