Value Stream Mapping

For more information, see Value Stream Mapping: How to Visualize Work and Align Leadership for Organizational Transformation by Karen Martin & Mike Osterling.


VSM is a rapid workshop approach, that brings multiple stakeholders together to understand how a significant business process currently works, across departmental and team boundaries. Participants in the workshop build a joint visual model of the end-to-end process, including the dysfunctional behaviours and waste created by the current approach. Metrics are added to the sub-processes to illustrate cycle and lead times, providing a clear picture of priorities for improving the process.

After running a small number of workshops (sometimes one is enough!) against a representative set of business processes, patterns emerge that highlight organisational dysfunction that can form the backlog for transformative change for a coach to facilitate.

Situation to Use

Ideally, recently completed projects or processes should be used that are fresh in people’s minds. The audience should include stakeholders that can cover the sub-processes involved in the end-to-end value stream. It is vital that the workshop is setup as a safe learning space and is not about finding teams, departments or individuals to blame for issues.


Games Outcome Project Assessment

Link here : Games Outcomes Project Information


Helps team understand a number of different aspects to their team working and score themselves against an aggregated view of successful teams from a review of a number of game projects in the gaming industry.

It looks at 10 key assessment questions over these areas:

  • Design risk management score, Team focus score, Technical risk management score, Team stability score, Production & project planning score, Crunch / overtime score, Respect score, Collaboration / helpfulness score, Organizational perception of failure score, Organizational perception of failure score, Psychological safety score.

Then assesses the team with questions that cover 3 frameworks: Patrick Lencioni’s 5 Dysfunctions of a team, Richard Hackman’s leading Teams and Gallup’s team model.

Situation to Use

This is mainly a Team Focussed health check assessment. It helps to highlight where there are areas that the team could focus on to improve in order to guide appropriate interventions. This can be asked from different perspectives e.g. from within the team and from outside the team. This can highlight a difference in opinion from different groups.

It could also highlight where leadership behaviours or organisational culture could be leading to issues that are not supporting more effective delivery. It provides an assessment that can be used to benchmark against successful projects in the gaming sector.

Competing Values Framework


Creators Cameron and Quinn found two polarities by statistical analysis that make the difference when it comes to organizational effectiveness. Organizations have to choose whether they have:

  • Internal focus and integration – or – External focus and differentiation
  • Stability and control – or – Flexibility and discretion

The criteria covered are shown in the following diagram:


  • To the left in the graph, the organization is internally focused: what is important for us, and how do we want to work?
  • To the right the organization is externally focused: what is important for the outside world, the clients, and the market?.
  • At the top of the graph, the organization desires flexibility and discretion, while at the bottom the organization values the opposite: stability and control.

Situation to Use

Provides an assessment for understanding and changing organizational culture in order to make them more effective, using validated instruments for diagnosing culture and management competency. Its four quadrants correspond with four Organizational Culture Types Clan, Adhocracy, Market, and Hierarchy that provides good metaphors that can be used by coaches to drive their work. The tool takes input from both leaders and teams.

Health Check Template

by David Lowe @ Scrum & Kanban


Assessment of open questions for a team, manager or coach to understand where a team is at. It’s used to understand and not to compare teams. Provides a basis to gain insight, give team feedback and to understand how a team progresses over time. Covers Individuals & Interactions, Delivering Value, Customer Collaboration, Change, and General areas.

Example questions include:

  • How often is the team disrupted and by whom? How important are the disruptions?
  • Is the Team delivering what the business needs most? How do they know?

Situation to Use

A team can be doing well and poorly in the same area at the same time. Although they look pretty and appear clear, simplified visual cues really do not help in any way. Instead, taking some time to stand back and evaluate the situation is very useful. This tool will give a quick view when someone first begins working with a team, and does not require a significant amount of psychological safety to run, as many of the questions are objective and non-emotive.

Measurements of Happiness Levels / HR Data


Happiness surveys are give companies immediate feedback about people’s happiness with their jobs. Gather mood they are in about work. Which state are people in? These surveys are anonymous.

Example questions could be:

  • How happy are you in general?
  • How happy are you with the environment?
  • How happy are you with work/life balance?
  • How happy are you with your boss?
  • How happy are you with your colleagues?

Similar to Maslow / 4 Levels of happiness:

  1. Material objects – basic needs
  2. Ego, gratification, comparison
  3. Doing good for others, making world a better place.
  4. Sublime, ultimate perfect happiness.

Situation to Use

You can use happiness level measurements

  • At the beginning of an engagement – before change
  • Regular check-ins over time and look for improvement


Reviewing existing Scrum artefacts


  • Looking to see if all basic Scrum artifacts exist (if Scrum is in use)
    • (product backlog, sprint backlog, product increment, )
  • Looking to see which other useful Agile artifact are in use, for example
    • User Stories
    • Impediment Backlog
    • Release Plan
    • Product Vision
    • Definition of Ready
    • Definition of Done
    • Burndown charts – stories, epics, sprints, releases
    • If available and approved by team, Retrospective notes / stories for improvement
    • If available and approved by team, Team Agreements
    • (Note that past retrospective information and team agreements should ONLY be shared if all team members are ok with sharing. This will maintain team trust.)
  • Check quality of artifacts
  • Are teams delivering value?
  • Are teams delivering products first?
  • Are teams able to complete sprints?
  • Does data match up with what people in the organization say?

Situation to Use

  • For organizations that are using Agile practices – beginning of engagement, check on a regular basis
  • For teams that have new scrum masters
  • For organizations new to Agile – check after every sprint and adapt as needed

Open Interview Questions


Interview questions that get people talking about their feelings and conditions. Aim is to get as much information as possible. Requires trust and ability to gauge non-verbal communication. Especially powerful when a) interviewing all team members and b) when paired with review of data.

Example questions:

  • How’s your work situation?
  • What’s morale like?
  • If you could change anything, what would you change?
  • What’s hindering you?
  • What’s working today?

Situation to Use

  • Beginning of engagement
  • Any face-to-face conversation is an opportunity to set up trust and get information about communication partners (team, individual, management, whatever).

ORSC Deep Democracy

Need to do a team agreement to ensure a safe environment. Participants can take on any role/persona in the company and give their view point. Others can join in that role or step into a different role.


Every voice of the system can be heard, even though the role is not present.

Situation to Use

To be used once you have establish good relationship with your client. Can be used for any hot topic.
Topics that could be used: When we need to remove roles from the organisation? (removing roles)
How does your organisation support personal growth?

ORSC Informal Constellation

Topic is on the floor in the middle of everyone. Everyone walks around the topic and moves closer if they agree to the topic or further away. People stand in their position and can express their feelings and where they are standing.


Short, fast simple way to reveal system to itself. Can get actionable items.

Situation to Use

As part of an initiation. Example Topics that could be used:

  • How do you identify with the company culture?
  • How important is collaboration?

Maturity Assessment & observations

A team self-assessment, combined with interviews and observations, so that the team is aware of where they are across dimensions and maturity.


Good for awareness for teams to understand where they are and how to move forward.

Situation to Use

Good at the initiation

Agile Business Consortium Pulse Survey & Culture Matrix

Online Pulse Survey (In BETA June 2018).

An assessment tool that assess the culture based on the 7 areas below. A white paper and overview information can be found here.

  1. Unleashed purpose and meaningful results – a clear, compelling and inspiring purpose, focusing on results that matter to all stakeholders
  2. Agile leadership – supportive leadership over directive command and control style
  3. Well being & fulfilment – happy and positive over fear-based, stress, fatigue and burn-out. Providing a deep sense, and feeling, of achievement for individuals
  4. Collaborative communities & distributed authority – a network of collaborative teams with autonomy for appropriate decision making
  5. Trust & transparency – loyalty, integrity and commitment to transparency, openness and honesty for day-to-day working
  6. Adaptability to change – a strong core that provides stability with flexibility to adapt and change
  7. Innovation, learning & personal mastery – psychological safety, thoughtful experimentation, learning and reflective practice moving towards personal strengths and mastery


This is a meta view of a number of framework definitions with a quick survey tool to support and provide insight into where the organisation or sub-system of the organisation is. These are freely available for use.

The ABC are also supporting this with a “library of resources” the Agile Dojo can be found here : The ABC welcomes content contributions for any new articles.

If there are enough survey responses there will be a comparison available across industries.


This can be used as an initial assessment with an organisation and an ongoing review of any shifts that have occurred after interventions.

Framework Detail:

This framework has been created based on research of a number of different Agile cultural definitions. This is an initial version, it is Creative Commons, the ABC would love to receive any feedback. (


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