Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Agile Transformation and Me

I've worked for big companies like Digital Equipment Corporation, medium, like Sybase and Progress (my current job) all the way down to small start-ups, like EasyAsk and Novera Software.  Each job has offered me different opportunity to grow, from create value from nothing at start-ups, to managing product lines generating hundreds of millions of dollars.  Through it all, one thing has remained constant regardless as to the size of the company or my role in it:  continuously improve and become more efficient.  The only difference I've experienced is that with smaller companies it is generally easy, or quicker, to change what (and how) you are doing.  The larger the company, the more difficult it is to change.  Pure size, inertia and existing customers and revenue provide significant reasons for doing things the way they have always been done.  

It is in this type of "bigger company" environment that the greatest challenge and perhaps the greatest rewards lie.  Improvements in the efficiency of the software development process can reap significant dividends.  Over the past decade+, a major evolution in software development practice, in the name of Agile Software Development, has been taking hold in the industry.  I've been fortunate to have experience with delivering product using Agile frameworks and methodologies, both as an individual contributor, project leader, up to VP of Engineering.  In my present role of Director of Engineering for 3 product lines generating over $300M in revenue, I am one of the leaders working to convert my the engineering organization of over 500 software engineers from a Waterfall-centric development process to Agile (Scrum) process.  As this transformation got underway and I began coaching our pilot teams, I found there were many seemingly random thoughts and ideas bouncing around my head that I started writing them down, and ultimately started blogging within my organization.   I've decided to post these blogs publicly, charting my organization's journey, our Progress, from Waterfall to Agile.

Thanks for reading...

John Piekos