XP Days France 2008 – Paris, je t’aime…

On Monday 05 may & Tuesday 06 may my father and I were in Paris. Instead of visiting this beautifully city we enjoyed the people from the French Agile community.

Although the organization before was rather chaotic, XPDay.FR 2008 itself was splendid.

The first thing I noticed when we arrived was the Job Board. Hey that’s new. I haven’t seen that at another unconference.

We should do that at all Barcamps etc….

Or maybe the fact that I am available as project coach makes me more sensible for things like this.

As announced, we did two sessions.
I also followed Pascal, Bernard and Portia’s excellent 9 boxes session. I have never been to a bad session with Pascal. And looking at the number of participants I think nobody ever has. I won’t describe the session as Dave has already done a perfect job with his post.

They did it in a fully packed room. And it worked. Not only is this a great session,  it is also designed to scale. Thanks Pascal, it made us think about scaling our sessions. If we ever redo the leadership game, we now know how to scale it.

Just before that session we did our Communication Game in the same room. We designed the game for 22 people max. As Laurent told me the day before we had 43 people interested in the session, we looked for a solution. Which we found in Bernard Notarianni. So we could scale to 33 people. (11 per trainer.) That was a bad decision. 1 evening  preparation by skype for a new trainer is a very bad idea.

Our workshops are always written out completely. So for someone familiar with the way we are working picking up is pretty easy, at least that is what we though. We still have to do our retrospective but while I was delivering my part, I realized, we set up Bernard with an almost impossible task. Both my father and my students were happy. I did not have feedback from Bernard’s students but I know he was not happy himself. Sorry Bernard; we have learned from it.

We still had more people interested in the session. I promised that we would redo the session an evening at OCTO: et voila: here is the announcement of our communication game at Paris the 22 may. Before the session we will also talk about how to use The Core Protocols.

We did the The leadership game for the third year in a row. We knew people were still interested. From the participant survey we heard 16 people would join the game; So we wanted to close the room at 20. So from nr 21 we told the next people coming in they would only be able to observer as 20 is the maximum to have a good feedback round (the most important part of the game).

Some people left the room when I told them. We ended up with 26 people. After the 2nd second game, my father and I decide we would still let everyone participate, and would have 9 observers instead of 4. (We had done it before with 24, 26 would be almost the same.)

When we held the general feedback round we saw to our surprise that we had 32 people in the room. So another 6 people sneaked in. (Probably after/during the break)  So we kept the feedback round much tighter as usual. It felt a little bit awkward, but the applause at the end made us realized we delivered another great session.

This brings the total number of people that followed this workshop in Paris to 76. Bernard has asked me to redo this session also once at OCTO. (As preparation for Agile 2008 in Toronto.) In the next weeks I will make the leadership game available as download. (Just like the XP Game)

On top of that Els & me are going to deliver another version for Essap in Varesse (Italy), so it is really spreading.

After this session I had the feeling that Paris loves us to.

Unfortunately we had to run as I had to pick up my kids from school and I had a psychology exam the next day.

Next to our session both my father and I had again great conversations. A big kudos to the organization team. We understand your pain with our sessions. We will design our new sessions to scale. (And have already realized how we can do that with the leadership game.)

Update: we already have another session in mind for next year, and it will scale too.

I have uploaded my pictures of XPDAY.FR 2008 to Flickr

If you are a linkedin member feel free to join The XPDay group http://www.linkedin.com/e/gis/36977/648E9F253AC7

If you were in my session feel free to connect with me on Linkedin: http://www.linkedin.com/in/yveshanoulle

I am Yves Hanoulle, your virtual Project Coach and you can reach me @ Yves at my agile training company .net


One Response

  1. […] in XPDays. My father and I have already 2 sessions in mind we want to present. Based on the feedback we got in Paris, we will make sure our sessions […]

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