Jay Cross helps people work and live smarter. Jay is the Johnny Appleseed of informal learning. He wrote the book on it. He was the first person to use the term eLearning on the web. He has challenged conventional wisdom about how adults learn since designing the first business degree program offered by the University of Phoenix.
“On February 11-13, 2001, at The Lodge at Snowbird ski resort in the Wasatch mountains of Utah, seventeen people met to talk, ski, relax, and try to find common ground and of course, to eat. What emerged was the Agile Software Development Manifesto.” Source
On January 6, 2001, at a mountaintop ski resort in Stoos, Switzerland, another group is meeting to talk, ski, and discuss how to make the philosophy underpinning Agile a management practice beyond the realm of software development. Steve Denning, one of our ringleaders, wrote “We will be searching to see what can be done to create and energize organizations in ways that make them better for the organizations themselves, better for the people doing the work, better for those for whom the work is being done, and better for society as a whole and to do so on a sustained basis.”
The practice of management is due for a makeover. Today’s organizations are not productive; their workers are not fulfilled. In many situations, agile management seems more appropriate than command & control. If this is how to make the world better, I’m all for it. Hence, I’m headed to a Swiss mountaintop.
What was it that made that session at Snowbird more than ten years ago so effective? I called Ward Cunningham to talk about the session. Here’s a brief excerpt from our conversation.