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Friday, November 12, 2010

No more play-doh

My courses and workshops, use  exercises, discussions and simulations to help attendees embrace the principles of Scrum and Kanban.  The simulations are among the most challenging to create.  Finding the best way to--for example--simulate a sprint in 15 minutes to creative game developers is not easy.  So I try variations of games other trainers use and invent some of my own.

Over the past six months, one simulation I've used is called Movements of a Hypnotic Nature (see slide 14 for more details).  Good things were said about it, so I tried it.  The simulation requires play-doh, golf balls, string, straws, etc: lots of interesting things used to build a simple product that  moves and has an aesthetic quality.

There were two problems with this simulation.  The first is that the connection between the simulation and Scrum can be a bit nebulous.  It's not a bad simulation, but I've found better ones (e.g. some based on Legos).  The second is traveling with all this stuff.  It adds a lot of weight and recently when I was packing, I noticed that the pay-doh, timers (used for time-boxing the simulation) and wires for all the gadgets I carry happened to pile-up in a  disturbing configuration:

Airline security is enough of a hassle right now without this being seen by a baggage inspector.  Sorry future workshop attendees, but play-doh based Scrum simulations are now off the menu!

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