Angela Dugan

Angela Dugan

Principal Consultant and ALM Practice Manager
Polaris Solutions
Oak Park, IL
@OakParkGirl

Angela Dugan is a Principal Consultant for Polaris Solutions, a consulting firm based out of Chicago, Denver, and St. Louis. Angela has been in software since 1999, filling roles including business analyst, developer, tester, project manager, and agile coach. Prior to joining Polaris, Angela spent 5 years as a TFS specialist with Microsoft, where her passion for working with the local community was sparked. In 2011 she followed her passion for problem solving to Polaris, and now runs their ALM Practice. Angela runs the Chicago ALM user group, is an active organizer/speaker at local conferences including ThatConference, is a Microsoft ALM MVP, a Certified Scrum master, and a SAFe Program Consultant. Outside of wrangling TFS, Angela is an avid board gamer, an aspiring runner, and a Twitter addict. She is constantly working on her 1910 house in Oak Park with her husband David, where they also raise two ornery chickens, Betsy and Gertrude and a GSP puppy named Sadie who cannot seem to stay out of trouble :)

Angela's Sessions

  • Demystifying SAFe, the Scaled Agile Framework

    Just when companies seems to be warming up to agile, here comes SCALED agile. But how is SAFe really different than agile? Does using the SAFe framework undermine the scrum teams? Isn’t SAFe just a glorified version of waterfall that companies adopt when they can’t handle “real” agile? I decided the best solution was to go through the training and spend some time practicing it in the field. What I found was that SAFe leverages the best of Lean, Kanban, and scrum. SAFe is intended for large, enterprise customers delivering extremely complex and interdependent systems, but that doesn’t mean it offers nothing to smaller teams. Since becoming a Safe program consultant, I have coached a number of my smaller customers on improving their software development and delivery processes leveraging techniques from SAFe. In this interactive session, I plan to quickly walk through the tenets of SAFe, share some of my learnings with you, and help you to understand when and how SAFe can benefit your team!

    Speaker: Angela Dugan

    Level: Beginner

    Tracks: Next Generation Process and Tools 

    Topics: Agile  Development Practices  Project Management 

  • Workshop: Value Stream Mapping and Kaizen in Agile Retrospectives

    Continuous self-improvement on agile teams is traditionally done through agile retrospectives, a form of post-mortem held at the completion of an iteration. More often than not, retrospectives begin to fade and the list of action items keeps growing until teams simply succumb to business-as-usual practices. In some cases, teams eventually abandon retrospectives altogether because they feel like a waste of time! I’ve seen it happen, it is NOT pretty.

    • Do you feel like your retrospectives are a death march where no one is actively participating?
    • Do the same problems seem to resurface repeatedly?
    • Are your retrospectives ending prematurely or being cancelled in favor of "getting more real work done"?
    • Or maybe you feel great about your agile retrospectives, but just want to learn more about Kaizen... Join Angela as she leads this interactive discussion about how you can use Kaizen to analyze and improve your agile retrospectives. She will begin with a brief review of what an agile retrospective is, and walk through some specific retrospective scenarios she has experienced on her own scrum teams. We will then cover the concept of Kaizen, and walk through the Kaizen process. Lastly, Angela will demonstrate how you can use a Kaizen process to turn your agile retrospectives back into the effective continuous improvement tools they are meant to be! Learning Objectives:
    • Determining if your current agile retrospectives are being effective
    • Learn Value Stream Mapping and Kaizen Burst lean techniques
    • Using VSM and Kaizen in agile retrospectives

    Speaker: Angela Dugan

    Level: Intermediate

    Tracks: Next Generation Process and Tools 

    Topics: Agile