Monday, May 18, 2009

PMI EMEA Congress, Day 1

The PMI Congress kicked off here in Amsterdam today. The morning started with a set of 4 pecha-kucha presentations on agile. After the 4 presentations, each speaker led a breakout session in a different room. Based on the questions in my room, there are a lot of people new to agile but very interested in learning how it works.

The keynote presentation was by Anne Larilahti from Nokia Siemens. Her topic was sustainibility. It wasn't one of those presentations that gets you all fired up. By her own admisison, it can even be a bit of a depressing topic. However, it did get you to think.

I attended a couple more sessions on agile in the afternoon, including one from a friend I met back at the Edinburgh conference, Sonja Koppensteiner (co-presented with Nathalie Udo). They focused on the planning aspect of an agile project and even had the attendees break up into small groups for an exercise of planning an iteration based on a prioritized backlog. In my group there was some questions about the roles in agile projects; what does the product owner or project manager do?

During the networking reception I had a conversation with Bruce Rodrigues, who is on the PMI Board of Directors. He was asking some of the same questions about agile; is it just the latest trend, how does it really work etc. My observation is that it has been around for a while, but mostly in software. Now it's starting to catch on in other areas.

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