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Agile-Carolinas group


People in NC/SC interested in Lean, Agile, Scrum, etc.





We welcome people new to Agile.  To see some introductory stuff, including pages you may be interested in, go here: Introduction



The Continuing Agile Transformation Journey of the Carlyle Group

Thursday, February 11, 2021
5:30 PM
 to 7:30 PM EST





Past events:


Thu, Jan 14 · 5:30 PM EST


Brett Bender at Lowe's Home Improvement

"Agile Transformation, from the Ground Floor Up".

Description: Using the building a house analogy as the structure of the content.

Bio for Brett Bender: I've been building, architecting, operating and managing delivery of high-traffic digital technology experiences for IBM, Disney and Lowe's for better than 20 years now. That said, my path to Agile was not a traditional one. At Disney, I went through the typical participant journey of one team, to team of teams to SAFe-ish (with some DevOps sprinkled in) and brought that experience to Lowe's in 2013. After spending 4 years transforming the E-Commerce department, I was asked by the CIO to lead the transformation for all of Lowe's Tech. This is where my talk begins…

Please tell Kathy.McDermid@LeanAgileTraining.com.

This event will be online. We will be using Zoom and will send the link out by 4 p.m. through email on the day of the event.


Past events:


Open Space Meeting - What’s Our Agile Org Approach?

Thu, Nov 19 · 5:30 PM EST


Topic: Open Space on Managers & Agile


The approach to this meeting: Open Space. We start with a theme. Then, the attendees decide the sessions. We have 3-4 breakout rooms and 3 short (20-minute) sessions.

In our next meeting, we will discuss:

  • How should your organization be structured around Agile teams? 

  • What do we mean by “Agile org?" 

  • What are the relevant values and principles? 

  • What should it look like? (Draw me a picture.)

  • How would we implement it? (Not easy, but a start…)

So, three “rounds” and group discussion after each round. This is a potentially huge subject. People may want to restrict themselves to:

  • Teams in a smallish firm or department (say 60-150 people)

  • How the management works or is structured

  • How the teams get access to “chickens”

  • Other basic structure or processes (outside the teams) that you consider essential

For example, where are the people nearby who support the teams? What about assorted chickens or “chicken” groups (e.g., DBAs, architects, DEV/OPS units)? Where do the business side folks fit in (SMEs, Business Stakeholders, etc.)? Some might want to start on the budgeting process.

This event will be online. We will be using Zoom and will send the link out by 4 p.m. through email on the day of the event.



Agile Carolinas: How to build a Great Team?


Wed, September 23, 2020

5:30 PM – 7:30 PM EDT


During this Agile Carolinas meeting, we will discuss how to start a great Scrum Team at your organization.

Some possible sub-topics (you will get to decide that day):

  • What are the prerequisites?

  • How can you gather a great team?

  • What makes a great first project?

  • How can the managers help?

  • What does the Scrum Team need to commit to?

  • How can you improve the Scrum Team?







Past Events 


Agile Carolinas: Agile Transformation Open Space 


When: Thursday, August 27th, 2020
     5:30 PM
 to 8:00 PM

Where: Zoom

Agile Carolinas has recently had some awesome meetings on this topic of Agile Transformation. Now we want to do an Open Space event on the subject.

Topics might be:
- Dealing with middle-level resistance
- Getting stable teams
- Getting teams set up well for success (the team, the product vision, the situation)
- How and where to get senior managers engaged? (Everyone agrees on the principle, but practically…)
- Metrics of success overall
- Metrics for Scrum Teams
- How much to control consistency across teams
- How to attack the impediments across multiple teams
- How to pull the Scrum Team into self-responsibility for “Agile success”
- Best ways to get the business side more engaged
- Are we talking business agility yet? How would we know?




Past Events 


Your Agile Career 

This theme is NOT just for beginners.  This is for all stages of your career.  But perhaps not for those already CEO of IBM.  We partly assume that most people are interested to share about their current stage, and many will want to know about “the next stage”.  (Some will be there to hire.)

Includes: VP – Development, Manager, CPO, PO, SM, Team member, QA, SVP of the Agile Transformation, Manager of a major LOB/Division, Coder, Architect, business stakeholder, Start-up founder, Steve Jobs, and the next Steve Jobs who is only 18 now.


 Even if agile is not in or around your title or role, we advise designing your career in a more agile way.  Implicitly or explicitly, you have to be agile.  And more agile.

Format: Open Space for 2 hours.

The kinds of questions you might ask:

1. What is the demand for ScrumMasters now?

2. What defines a good firm for an agile career?

3. Which certification(s) is/are most helpful?

4. How do I find my next job?

5. How about being a contractor or consultant?  How to do that better?

6. Given [X situation..], now that I have [Y position], what is my best next step?


We should have a wide group, with many different perspectives.  You should be able to get into small groups and learn a LOT.


This will be online.  We will be using Zoom, and the break out rooms feature, and the link for this meeting will be sent out to you by 4pm on the day of this event.





Over the last 10 years, The Carlyle Group, a private equity firm, was “doing” Agile solely within its IT department. There was no alignment. While the organization had been "doing" Agile for several years, they had yet to realize the true benefits due to organizational culture.

A radical change was necessary.

In just one year, the organization has shifted from project to product focus. Business and IT have been re-aligned to focus on business outcomes rather than project output. The funding model has been completely realigned to fund teams rather than projects. There has also been a significant change in focus to what not to work on rather than just doing everything requested.

While not finished, the result to date is a significant improvement in effectiveness and customer satisfaction.





When: Thursday, March 12, 2020
     6:00 PM
 to 8:00 PM

Where: Wells Fargo on the Green 


Scrum@Scale was designed for full company Scrum in any domain. So how is it that so many organizations fall short in company wide agility? Please join us for a refresher on Scrum@Scale and conversation on how you can tell when your scrum has moved from Shu to Ha and beyond.

Thanks to Signature Consultants for Sponsoring.


When: Thursday, February 13, 2020
     6:00 PM
 to 8:00 PM

Where: Cornwell Center 


How do you try to convince people about Agile? Do you prepare a list of bullet points, facts, and figures?
Is this working? Or do you still have skeptics that are wearing you out? Or are you just starting and
wondering how many facts and figures you should use? OR, is there a better way?
This presentation will look past the logic of facts to the emotional side of change. You will be introduced to some techniques for inspiring people to change.

Mary Lynn Manns, PhD is a professor in the Department of Management at UNC Asheville. Her books, co-authored with Linda Rising, are Fearless Change: Patterns for Introducing New Ideas, 2005 (also published in Japanese and Chinese) and More Fearless Change: Strategies for Making Your Ideas Happen, 2015. Mary Lynn has given numerous presentations at conferences worldwide and organizations that include Microsoft, Proctor & Gamble, Avon, and Amazon.com


Sponsor is Teksystems





Michelin's Agility Journey (the Good, the Bad, the Ugly)


Hosted by: Kevin Cosgrove

Kevin is a Canadian who made his way South in 1997 during the Y2K craze, to work with Michelin as a consultant. After 10 years of consulting and 13 years as an employee at Michelin, Kevin has played almost all roles in IT. He spent 4 years in France building and deploying applications Worldwide before returning to USA. In 2016 he became the Lean and Agile Transformation Program Manager for the Americas. CSM, SA-SAFE 4, Certified Scrum@Scale
Sponsor: TEKSystems




Game Night 

When: December 18th 2019

Where:Wells Fargo on the Green 


Session Description: To celebrate the holidays and the new year, Agile Carolinas will be holding this event -- the games will be educational and fun, AND we will have a bit of a holiday celebration!

We expect you to learn games you can use with your people.

There will also be food and beverage and socializing. Including one free adult beverage per person.

Over 90 minutes we expect to do 3 different games by 4 amazing Agile leaders:

- Gwen Kestin and Frank Wohlfarth
- Tom Friend
- Rowena Lorusso

You will be asked to participate in these Agile games. As part of the celebration, we will have food and beverages. Afterwards, we will have a bit more (save some room).

Thanks for Randstad for sponsoring.


When-      November 14th, 2019 

Where-  Duke Optimist Hall


340 E 16th Street · Charlotte, nc


Topic-       Business Agility What the Heck is it?

Description- A definition of Business Agility: The ability to deliver more and better things to customers more quickly, that are more adaptive to their future needs.
An alternate definition: How to fail fast and learn faster what the customer really, really wants!

Riddhi Gupta will be talking with us about Business Agility. This is a hot topic. She will share with you the purpose and the ways to enable Business Agility at your company. Her model for Business Agility comes from being in various transformations and from what she has learned. and sometimes didn’t see, from teams while in the trenches.Riddhi Gupta is a seasoned IT leader with expertise in formulating and executing IT strategies. She has worked at several well-known firms in Charlotte. You can find her on LinkedIn.



Date : Thursday, September 19, 2018

Time: 6:00 - 8:00 p.m.

Discussion:  Enterprise Agile Do’s and Don’ts

Location: The Green

Speaker : Brett Bender

Spotlighting some of the key sponsorships, partnerships, tactics, processes and failure points when embarking on an Enterprise Wide Agile Transformation.

Sponsor: Signature Consultants




See Additional Past Meetings here PastMeetings


Other Notes


Please see the Special Announcements page for information on other up-coming events.


Please see the Your Action page for actions you can take to support Agile-Carolinas. Perhaps the most useful thing is to invite others.


Please help get the message out that this group is available to others. See Getting the Word Out


Our group is affiliated with the APLN (Agile Project Leadership Network; see APLN Background) and the Agile Alliance.

Catherine will talk about
"Leadership and K9 Training:  Teaming and behavioral shaping methods used by GREAT vs Terrible leaders"

She comes from a context of Agile in large organizations. But I think the ideas will apply elsewhere.  More details TBD.

Catherine is a great coach and has many years running the agile initiative in a large telecommunications company. 

This event starts at 6:00pm with food and networking and will go until 8pm.

Comments (3)

Russ Haddad said

at 3:06 pm on Apr 30, 2015

I've been trying to find contact information for the ScrumU website. Anyone know who the webmaster is or who runs that group?

Pablo Gonzalez said

at 8:22 pm on May 4, 2015

The Registration link here is outdated. I'm trying to register to the next event on May 11.
Thanks for posting the updated one!

Cassandra Wagner said

at 11:55 am on May 5, 2015


Here is the link. Have you registered?


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