We help teams get productive, cut waste, and deliver great software.

Scrum Training & Coaching

Want to be more Agile? Looking for an Agile transformation? Need Scrum training or someone to help your Scrum teams improve their game? We can help. We offer three different Scrum courses. We also can embed with your teams to help them develop their Agile & Scrum "muscle memory".

Ever get the feeling that one or more of your teams just isn't "clicking" and kind of needs a therapist? Do you suspect there's a general malaise in your development organization? We can help with that, too.

Team Foundation Server, Visual Studio ALM, & DevOps Consulting

Team Foundation Server (TFS) and Visual Studio ALM (VS ALM) can help your teams communicate more efficiently and be more productive. It can also help you with your ALM and DevOps automation concerns through automated builds, automated Release Management, automated testing, and more. We've been doing this for years and we can help.

Development & QA Best Practices

Software development doesn't have to be painful and software testing doesn't have to be a magical black box. We can help your developers learn and adopt the skills to help them to build high-quality, maintainable code. We can help your QA testers plan and manage their work to help ensure quality in your final product.

We'll help everyone learn to work together so that quality becomes something you think about every day rather than something you think about at the last second.

 

 

 
  • Slides: “Coaching Skills for Scrum Masters & The Self-Organizing Team” from ALM Chicago

    I just wrapped up speaking at ALM Chicago 2015. (Had a great time, BTW.) As promised, here are my slides from my talk. Coaching Skills for Scrum Masters & The Self-Organizing Team Scrum works best with — arguably, requires — a self-organizing team. If you want a high-performing and self-organizing team, it helps if your […]

  • Zen & the Art of the Scrum Timebox

    Everything that happens in Scrum happens within a ‘timebox’.  There’s the 30 day (or less) overall Sprint and then there are timeboxes for the events within a Sprint. There’s 8 hours (or less) for the Sprint Planning Meeting.  The Daily Scrum gets 15 minutes.  Then 4 hours (or less) for the Sprint Review followed by […]

  • 4 Ways to Fail at Scrum Planning Poker

    If you’re doing Scrum, chances are high that you use or at least have heard of Planning Poker.  (By my estimates, I’d say that somewhere between 0 and 100% of teams use it.)  It’s a simple and effective way to do software estimation that’s easy to understand and implement. Considering how simple it is, you’d […]

  • A Quick Guide to Choosing Your Scrum Sprint Length

    If your team is using Scrum to organize their work and deliver done, working software, you’ll be working in Sprints.  A Sprint is the time you have to do your work.  A Scrum Sprint goes like this: 1) at the start of the sprint you plan what you’re going to do and how, 2) go […]

  • 5 Reasons Your Daily Scrum is Boring

    When you ask someone “what’s Scrum?”, probably 9 times out of 10 they’ll start telling you about the Daily Scrum meeting.  Maybe they call it the “standup” or the “daily” or the “daily standup” but they’re talking about that meeting that you’re supposed to have every day if you’re doing Scrum.  Oh…and they almost invariably say […]

  • Automatic Exception Handling on ICommand ViewModel Properties

    If you’re writing a WPF application or some other XAML-based application, you’re probably using the Model-View-ViewModel (MVVM) pattern.  If you’re being “good” about your MVVM implementation, you’re putting all your button click handling code into ICommand properties on your ViewModels.  (What!? You’re not doing that?  Naughty naughty!  You should!  It makes it so much more […]

  • Howto: Enable IIS directory browsing on Azure Websites

    Ever wonder how to enable IIS Directory Browsing on a directory in your Microsoft Azure Website?  Hint: it’s not in the control panel for your account. The answer: drop a web.config file into the directory you want to browse and set <directoryBrowse enabled=”true” />.  Done.  That’s it. Here’s a sample web.config that you can use: <configuration> […]

  • “Real World Scrum with TFS2013” slides from Visual Studio Live 2015 in Las Vegas

    I spoke at Visual Studio Live 2015 in Las Vegas (aka. VSLive Vegas) last week.  One of the talks I did was my “Real World Scrum with Team Foundation Server 2013” talk. You’ve got Team Foundation Server 2013 and you’re looking to do Scrum.  Ok.  Great.  Now what does that mean?  What does TFS2013 actually […]

  • “Zero to Hero” slides and code from Visual Studio Live 2015 in Las Vegas

    I spoke at Visual Studio Live 2015 in Las Vegas (aka. VSLive Vegas) last week.  One of the talks I did was my “Zero to Hero: Untested to Tested with Visual Studio Fakes” talk. You’ve got an app with no tests. Trust me. You’re not alone. You’d love to get some great code coverage but […]

  • Utilities for debugging Bootstrap with and without ASP.NET MVC

    I was running into a problem while trying to get a Bootstrap form to lay out properly.  My problem was that the text of labels was getting rendered under textboxes.  As I was playing with various Bootstrap styles on my DIVs – for example, ‘col-md-5’, ‘col-sm-5’, ‘col-sm-offset-1’, etc – it quickly became clear that I […]

  • Branching, Work In Progress, & Employee Retention

    I did a coaching and training session with a company recently. They’re a small, early-stage company in the Greater Boston-area. I got a call from the owner (let’s call him Mike) looking for help solving their problems with Team Foundation Server version control. Mike was complained that they were regularly “losing changes containing days worth […]

  • Add Simple Arithmetic to Web Performance Test & Load Tests

    I’ve been writing and maintaining a library of useful utilities for Visual Studio Web Performance Tests and Load Tests for a while and I got an email from a reader today asking for a new one.  She asked if there was any way to do simple math inside of a web performance test or load […]