Scale w/ SAFe Without Compromising Agility

Trusted partner for your Scaling journey

Are you leading an Enterprise looking at SAFe? If you’re here, you might have figured out (maybe the hard way… ) that to succeed with SAFe, it’s really important to have the right partner. You realize that SPCs are a dime a dozen, and if you want real expertise in SAFe, working with an SPCT and, ideally, a SAFe Fellow is a better choice.

You might also be worried about all the criticism that SAFe isn’t Agile. You can see the value but are concerned about making the wrong choices. You are right to be concerned and worried. Scaling Agile without compromising Agility is hard. I’ve worked in the trenches with dozens of companies, helping them navigate this complex challenge. I’ve seen what works. I’ve tried some things that didn’t work well initially and had to inspect and adapt.

Over the years, through my work in the field and my contributions to advancing this space, I’ve become a SAFe SPCT, Fellow, and Professional Scrum Trainer. These deep connections into two of the most prominent communities in this space give me a unique ability to guide organizations on their scaling journey while tapping into community knowledge, resources, and people as needed (e.g., collaborate with some of the best trainers/coaches out there when a global client needs some help that spans the globe).

Use Lean/Agile change management principles when Scaling Agile

One of the specific areas that I’m passionate about is leveraging lean/agile principles and practices when implementing and especially scaling agile. I believe in assuming variability/uncertainty and preserving options, balancing alignment/consistency and autonomy / decentralized control, flow, small batches, and minimum viable interventions. For example, Check out the SAFe Invitations guidance article, where I describe leveraging lean/agile principles when implementing SAFe. It will acquaint you with my thinking on some best practices to reinforce and anti-patterns to beware of on the SAFe journey.

Accelerating your SAFe Implementation – Workshops and strategic guidance

Going beyond SAFe Training

Often, my interaction with an organization starts with “We need SAFe training”. Whether this is an organization exploring SAFe or already using SAFe at some level, we frequently pivot from training to application/implementation guidance. Most often, this is in the form of the Agile Scaling Strategy Workshop – an interactive deep-dive session I’ve used to help dozens of enterprises create a strategy for leveraging/implementing SAFe.
It starts with the organization’s specific pains, context, and improvement goals. We then explore relevant agility principles and practices – including high-level SAFe training or even a formal Leading SAFe workshop. We then focus on establishing a high-level blueprint for agility, if/how SAFe would be leveraged, and how to drive the change. 

You can benefit from this workshop if your organization is new to agile altogether, considering scaling with SAFe, practicing some aspects of SAFe, or trying to revive a struggling SAFe implementation. The shared goal relevant for all starting points is the focus on real understanding and applying agility principles and practices at scale. 

Learn more about the Accelerate your SAFe Workshop and the more flow-focused Accelerating Flow workshop

Certified SAFe Training

As an SPCT I’m able to deliver most SAFe training curriculums. I mostly focus on private workshops, often as part of a scaling journey or introducing new competencies / behaviors. I find that workshops oriented around a concrete outcome are energizing and productive. Here are the SAFe classes I deliver most often:

Partnering / Supporting Your SAFe Implementation

There are several focal points in the SAFe Implementation Roadmap

As you, as your organization’s lean/agile change agent/champion start following the SAFe Implementation Roadmap, here are some ways you can leverage my help:

  • Learning the details of SAFe and how to implement it- in the Implementing SAFe / SPC workshop
  • Deliver training to leaders, roles, and all members of ARTs. NOTE: While any SPC can, on paper, deliver SAFe workshops themselves, most change agents/champions realize the importance of deep SAFe, agile, and training experience SPCTs like myself bring.
  • Facilitate vital focal points in the implementation – for example, the Executive Workshop, Value Stream, and ART Identification Workshop
  • Help RTEs and ART leaders prepare and facilitate their ART’s first PI Planning – whether it’s the logistics, organizing and refining backlogs (including advisory on how to leverage agile tools such as JIRA/ADO effectively in a SAFe context), fine-tuning the agenda, and providing real-time support during PI Planning itself.
  • Facilitate a Flow workshop and help establish Flow systems and metrics leveraging the tools in use in the organization (e.g., JIRA / ADO)
  • Facilitate Measure and Grow workshops to help assess SAFe competency/capabilities and identify growth opportunities.

Let’s discuss your SAFe / Scaling journey