Where is the TRAINING?

On my way into agile thinking, I am thinking about TRAINING. Not me getting trained in SCRUM, or KANBAN, or Design Thinking. More about: Where does the training come in an agile project?

We learn about this self-organizing, cross-functional teams with no roles, who are doing each task to the definition of DONE. A task is done, when it meets the definition of DONE.

So far so good. Let’s look into definitions of done. Just google it.

Anyone, anywhere mentions training? I could not find ONE sample, where training material or training in any kind is part of the definition of done.

That’s how I experience it as a training specialist.

Client: We have a training need. Can you help us?

Me: Sure, that’s what I do for a living. What kind of training do you need?

Client: In fact our software does not require any training. It is self explaining. That’s one of our goals. The user can use it – no training necessary.

Me: So your software has no features?

Client: Oh no, our software has tons of features and functions. We doing that for years, and our user need so much functionality. Sometimes we think, it is too much.

Me to myself: I want to learn the software…

So once I dig into the system, I realize of course, that for me as a beginner for this system, it is not self explaining. I need to ask a lot around. Ask the product owner, ask the developer to understand what is going on. Of course, reading the developer documentation (if this is part of the definition of done), or even better if there is an end user documentation.

Me to the Client: When do you release?

Client: Next month we start with our user acceptance testing (UAT) – release comes short after. Training starting for the UAT in two weeks. We have lots of ppt’s you can use. Just do the training. Our product owner is far to overloaded.

Wow, just another urgent training project. Good, that they use agile development in a „once we are releasing, we do a user acceptance testing on a larger scale“ – I will write about that in another post…

So I have more time, as usually the big bang user acceptance testing is not really agile enough, and the end user realizing how complex the system is, and what is not functioning at the moment. I know, in an agile project you did a lot ot UAT’s for each feature all the time. But these tests are not done by beginners, they are done by specialist, key users, subject matter experts.

Anyway – whoever is reading this:

Please, put training concept, training material, training development into your definition of done. Think about this: your solution is only as good, as much the user will use it. Look at it from a beginner perspective. Or hire an external training specialist, who can start with the beginners role.