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MY BLOG

I write about all things lean, agile and growth marketing.  Below you'll find guides and case studies covering all manner of topics in the lean, agile and growth space.  

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A No-Nonsense Guide to Agile

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Still confused about agile? Not managed to make sense of mindsets and manifestos, sprints and stand-ups? You're not the only one.

In this article I address that by describing agile in pragmatic terms. This is a common sense guide which will explain what the hell agility is all about, and why adopting an agile approach is a strategic choice that will give your organisation a competitive advantage.

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The challenge that faces all successful start-ups is the need to scale effectively.  In a small company agility comes naturally, but how can you maintain this speed as you grow?

As businesses grow they become more complex, a growing network of dependencies emerges, and with that comes the need for more process.  

 

This article explores how a team structure optimised for alignment can reduce that complexity, remove dependencies and decrease the process overhead in order to enable speed.

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How to Move Fast at Scale: Focus

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The challenge that faces all successful start-ups is the need to scale effectively.  In a small company agility comes naturally, but how can you maintain this speed as you grow?

Focus is the superpower which all businesses possess, but few ever deploy.  ​

In the second part of my series on how to move fast at scale I explore the power of focus to enable speed and realise learning and value sooner.

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How to Move Fast at Scale: Autonomy

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The challenge that faces all successful start-ups is the need to scale effectively.  In a small company agility comes naturally, but how can you maintain this speed as you grow?

While alignment and focus are relatively easy to achieve, autonomy is much more nuanced and more tricky.​

In the third part of my series on how to move fast at scale I tackle autonomy - what it takes both to lead and work autonomously.

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Get Up to Speed with "Growth Hacking"

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Growth marketing, or "growth hacking", is the secret sauce that's driven the success of the likes of eBay, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Uber and AirBnB.  It's also an approach widely practiced in Europe, and is just starting to bubble up in the UK, which has been slower to adopt.

 

If you want to supercharge the growth of your organisation, you want to know about this.  This is my guide to the most useful resources to start your learning journey.

 

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Introducing Business Agility at Moonpig

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This is an in-depth case study of introducing business agility at Moonpig.  An hour's reading in total, it's split in to 12 "bite-sized" chunks.

It covers every element of the journey - why the change was made, how it was made, outcomes and lessons learned.

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Is Self-Organisation a Myth?

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Self-organisation is a core concept of agile working.  It assumes that if we stop telling people to do, they will figure it out for themselves.  But is this really the case?

This article examines the reality of self-organisation - why it often fails and how to make it work.

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ADOPTING AGILE? DON'T START WITH THE MANIFESTO

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Published in 2001, the Agile Manifesto triggered a seismic change in the way software is developed.  For that we must be grateful.  However, whilst outlining a sound set of principles, the manifesto has also caused untold confusion.  We've spent the last 20 odd years arguing about what agile is.

In this blog post I discuss simpler, more effective ways to communicate and sell the benefits of agile.

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Adopting continuous deployment

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Originally written for the Moonpig Engineering blog, this post describes Moonpig's journey to adopt continuous delivery.

 

This change had a significant impact on our capacity to learn and deliver value to customers by enabling a fail-fast, test-and-learn approach.

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Moving to trunk-based development

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Originally written for the Moonpig Engineering blog, this describes my experiences of working with the engineering teams to successfully adopt trunk-based development. 

 

This enabled genuine continuous integration, creating fast feedback loops to provide early validation of working software.

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