Why You Should Attend "Leading SAFe"

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If I had to guess, some part of your organization is probably using Agile (likely in the form of scrum).  If that’s the case, then you personally probably fall into one of the following six groups:

  1. You are heavily involved in a major implementation of Agile that has expanded to the enterprise scale (more than five scrum teams) and uses SAFe or something similarly robust;
  2. You are heavily involved in a major implementation of Agile that has expanded to the enterprise scale (more than five scrum teams) but does not use SAFe or something similarly robust;
  3. Your organization is heavily involved in a major implementation of Agile that has expanded to the enterprise scale (more than five scrum teams), and you are not directly involved, but you need/want to get involved.
  4. Your organization has a few scrum teams, but it needs to expand scrum to the enterprise scale and you need to be involved.
  5. Your organization has a few scrum teams and that’s all it will ever need.
  6. Agile at your organization is of no interest to you whatsoever.

If your organization is not using Agile, your personal perspective might be any of the following:

  1. My organization would probably benefit from Agile, but we have a large software development program. A few scrum teams would be nice, but they aren’t going to make a significant impact, so why bother if we can’t see a way to transform much more of the organization?
  2. I can’t see how Agile would benefit our organization.
  3. It’s not my job to worry about such things.

I suggest (blatant plug!) that if you fall into groups 2, 3, 4, A or B, then you should strongly consider attending our two-day “Leading SAFe” class in January in Philadelphia. 

Yes, if you pass the exam following the class then you’ll receive a “SAFe Agilist” certification, but much more importantly, it is a class for managers and leaders who are a crucial part of any SAFe kick-off.  As such, the class will provide you with the depth you need for making decisions about SAFe beyond the basic introductory training for executives (and without the need for the four-day implementers program required for the SAFe Program Consultant certification). Indeed, this class is the first two days of the SAFe Program Consultant certification! 

Register before 12/31 for our Early Bird discount price – and hurry, the class is filling up!

We look forward to seeing you. And, of course, if you have any questions, please email me – I’m happy to help!

Mike Harris
DCG President
Certified SAFe Program Consultant

Written by Michael D. Harris at 05:00
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SAFe Agilist Certification Training

Join Mike Harris and Tom Cagley for a public training class in the Philadelphia region.


Leading SAFe is a two-day class that teaches attendees how to apply the SAFe framework, lean and product development flow in order to lead the adoption of SAFe within their team or organization.

Dates: January 21-22, 2015
Regular: $1,395
Early Bird: $1,195 (Register by 12/31)
Instructor: Mike Harris, DCG's CEO, Certified SAFe Program Consultant & Tom Cagley, DCG's VP of Consulting and Agile Practice Lead, Certified SAFe Program Consultant
Duration: 2 days; 8:30am - 5:00pm
Venue: Courtyard Marriott: Philadelphia Airport
Course Details

The registration fee includes a copy of the course materials for personal use, as well as the initial certification and exam fee. Breakfast, lunch and beverages will be provided each day.

Don't miss this opportunity to become a SAFe Agilist!

Register Now 

Written by Default at 05:00
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DCG Agile Consultants

As most people know, we offer a range of Agile solutions and services, with the goal of helping our clients to implement Agile or to improve existing Agile implementations.

Depending on the offering - and depending on the client - we deploy a consultant or a team of consultants to execute and oversee the engagement.

Not only do our consultants have years of experiences in successfully helping our clients with these types of engagements, they also maintain key industry certifications.

CSM SealFirst up, the Scrum Master certification. This certification is awarded by the Scrum Alliance. To receive the certification, a person must take the Scrum Master course from a Certified Scrum Trainer and then demonstrate their knowledge via an official test.

A Certified ScrumMaster® (CSM) helps project teams properly use scrum, increasing the likelihood of the project's overall success. CSMs understand scrum values, practices, and applications and provide a level of knowledge and expertise above and beyond that of typical project managers.

At DCG we have 5 Certified ScrumMasters located in the U.S. and Europe:

  • Mike Harris
  • Tom Cagley
  • David Herron
  • Alan Cameron, DCG-SMS
  • Steve Kitching, DCG-SMS

SAFe Program ConsultantNext up is the Scaled Agile Framework® (SAFe) Program Consultant certification. This certification is awarded by Scaled Agile, Inc. To receive the certification, a person must have 5+ years of experience in software development, testing, business analysis and product or project management; 3+ years of experience in Agile; and one or more other relevant Agile certifications. In addition, they must attend the certification class and pass the exam.

With this certification, a person has access to the tools necessary to implement Agile programs; they can also launch Agile Release Trains as part of an enterprise Lean|Agile change initiative.

At DCG we have 2 Certified SAFe Program Consultants:

  • Mike Harris
  • Tom Cagley

Don't let Agile fail because of your consultants. Experience matters, of course, but certifications such as these highlight individuals who are qualified to help you and who have access to the materials that will foster success.

We're always here to help.


Written by Default at 05:00
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Agile: What We Offer

We're huge proponents of Agile at DCG. No, not because it's trendy right now. It's because we've seen the value it provides for our clients time and time again.

Of course, there are a number of barriers to an effective Agile implementation - and not all organizations suffer from the same issues. To that end, we offer a range of Agile services and solutions to meet the needs of a organization looking to implement its first Agile program, the needs of an advanced Agile team who needs to fine-tune its implementation, or the needs of a team who simply requires a training class.

Our Agile Solutions include:

  • Agile Estimation: Develop a process to estimate your Agile projects.
  • Agile Project JumpStart: Implement a structured approach to quickly address the introduction of Agile in a competitive software offering.
  • Agile Project Reboot: Apply Agile techniques to rescue failing projects before it’s too late.
  • Agile Readiness Review: Establish a plan for a successful Agile implementation.

 Our Agile Advisory Services include:

  • Executive Coaching Sessions: One-on-one coaching focused on the roles of IT and business in Agile projects.
  • Agile Team Coaching: An intensive team tune-up with an on-site Agile coach.
  • Mindset Review: A review to gauge if Agile is a fad or commitment within your organization.

Our Agile training courses include:

  • Agile Estimation: Understand the principles and methods of estimating in an Agile environment.
  • Agile Practical Techniques: Foster an understanding of Agile techniques.

And we can't forget about organizations who need assistance in scaling Agile. For that we offer a SAFe solution, as well as training classes:

  • Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe) Readiness Review: Evaluate your organization to establish a plan for a successful Agile implementation.

There really is something for everyone - there's no need to abandon your challenged Agile program or to put off implementing Agile. Our team includes certified Scrum Masters and certified SAFe Program Consultants, and we can help you successfully navigate the waters of Agile, so that you too can truly reap its benefits.


Written by Default at 05:00
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Agile DC

Later this month DCG will be attending two Agile-based conferences in the D.C. area.

Agile DC Executive Summit

First up is the Agile DC Executive Summit on October 20. This conference is exclusive to senior managers and executives, as it focuses on sharing successes and failures that may benefit each other. The conversation will largely circulate around how to best nuture agility in an organization.

This will be our first time at this conference. We're looking forward to the speakers and we're very excited to share our thoughts about the usefulness of SAFe and how DCG has found success in its Agile implementations. As consultants, we are, of course, interested in the roadblocks others are facing in successfully implementing Agile, so that we can better understand how to help solve these challenges.


The following day, October 21, DCG's David Herron and Rob Cross will be at Agile DC. This will be our third year at the conference and our second year as a sponsor. We truly believe in the value of this conference in promoting the use of Agile in the region. There's always a top-notch list of speakers that fall within a number of different tracks - something for everyone!

It's a great environment to meet other people and talk one-on-one about what each person's organization is doing, while also taking in tips and strategies from the speakers. We call this one a don't-miss conference, so if you have the opportunity to attend - take it!

We can't wait to talk about SAFe and share more about what we believe to be a really important tool in the Agile toolkit. If you'll be at either of these conferences, please leave a comment below. We'd love to know what you're looking forward to the most, what Agile challenges you're facing and what Agile successes you've encountered. Of course, we'd also just like to schedule a time to chat about all of this in person. We can't get enough of Agile talk!

Look out D.C., here we come!

Written by Default at 05:00
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"It's frustrating that there are so many failed software projects when I know from personal experience that it's possible to do so much better - and we can help." 
- Mike Harris, DCG Owner

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