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Tobias Mayer is one of the voices in the agile community that often makes me feel uncomfortable.  

Rarely does he mince words. Or, as I’m inclined to do, use too many words. He’s mastered the art of short, thoughtful, and thought-provoking prose.

And you can tell he’s not being controversial for its own sake. A strong sense of genuineness comes out in his writing. It’s simply him…sharing…his personal discovery and thoughts.

He recently (May 2019) published an article on LinkedIn entitled Small Things. In it, he spoke about getting back to a place where learning, in this case in the agile space, as being a small, person-to-person experience.

It made me reconsider how I engage in “teaching & sharing” my agile experience in the world. Yes, I’ll still do workshops. But I might try to make them smaller, more intimate experiences. Not focusing so much (gulp) on registration numbers.

And instead of my talking so much, I’ll try to create more space for conversations and for story-telling. And this leads into considering the space itself. Space matters. Do I schedule a class in a sterile hotel OR do I look for a much more interesting space where we’re close to nature and have room to lounge, spread out, or even be alone for reflection?

And instead of forcing things like TFTBOTR, Lego games, Liberating Structures, Speed Boat, and a myriad of other facilitative techniques on my attendees, I might just try to create a space for dialogue. Where each person can find their voice, share their stories, and we can all grow and learn.

As I thought about Tobias’ article, it came to me that we both might have the same intent in our writing. Or at least I do.

I want folks not to read my words as fixed or prescriptive or declarative or judgmental.

Instead, all I ever try to do is create a space of thoughtfulness.

I’m hoping that I inspire each and every reader to simply consider my stories and my words. Looking for any helpful truth in them. And then decide, for themselves, if there is anything worth acting on? Is there anything useful?

That’s it. I’m not trying to make a global point or posture as some agile expert. I’m simply trying to touch one person at a time.

Stay agile my friends,


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