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Liftoff: Start and Sustain Successful Agile Teams
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Liftoff: Start and Sustain Successful Agile Teams

3.75  ·  Rating details ·  138 Ratings  ·  20 Reviews
Ready, set, liftoff! Align your team to one purpose: successful delivery. Learn new insights and techniques for starting projects and teams the right way, with expanded concepts for planning, organizing, and conducting liftoff meetings. Real-life stories illustrate how others have effectively started (or restarted) their teams and projects. Master coaches Diana Larsen and ...more
Paperback, 200 pages
Published June 20th 2016 by Pragmatic Bookshelf (first published October 31st 2011)
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Derek Neighbors
Feb 20, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Everyday teams are asked to start work on projects that they don't
have a clear understanding about. Many times they don't even know why
the project exists in the first place. Agile project lift offs
establish the alignment necessary to define the working relationships
and community necessary to build the momentum to achieve success. If
you are starting a new project or have one that is currently off
course the battle tested methods provided apply to any project to help
ensure success.
Jun 29, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: work
The theory was good. The case studies were the best bet. The agendae for sessions will be useful. But this little book was SO hard to read. Very dry and academic, especially after reading a run of 'agile' books. It's worth having on your bookshelf but don't try read it for enjoyment.
Yves Hanoulle
Jul 28, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
As I loved Agile Retrospectives: Making Good Teams Great, the previous book of Diana. I had to read LiftOff. I did not regret it. She has done it again.

Think about the impact retrospectives have on (agile) teams.
Now think about how projects start. Although we all know that a good start of a project has a huge effect on how things are going, not many people know what "a good start" actually means.

This book will help you to create a good start of a your project.

And if you think it is too late(beca
Kálmán Kéménczy
This book was recommended by an Agile expert on a conference and it helped me to organize my thoughts around the topic: vision and mission, team charter, form and start the project etc. Although the book has some useful content it is 5 times longer than it should be.
Javier Artime Muñiz
Do yourself a favor and practice what proposed in the book, especially if you think you don't need to start projects or charter teams in a different way to what you do today.
Toni Tassani
Jul 21, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: safari
As described by Hackman, the most important aspect of team performance is defined at the beginning of work. This "setup" of the team can also be done when work has started, but has to be done deliberately.
In this book the authors suggest a set of activities for the team start, kick-off, launch, charter, liftoff or however you want to call it.
Activities for defining the Purpose, for creating the Alignment and describing the Context.
Good inspiration for future liftoffs.
Giuseppe Zangari
Feb 27, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It's a must-have, really helpful in facilitating liftoff meetings.
It gives a clear idea of what you HAVE to have in mind when you are approaching a startup phase, but it's also helpful in leading meeting along the way of a project.
Christophe Addinquy
Oct 25, 2016 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: coaches, scrum masters, managers
Shelves: agile, coaching
I have mixed feelings aboout this book. The authors tried to setup a kickoff framework with proposed activities, as they did for "agile retrospective". But they were less successful here. I also should admit that I'm not a big fan of pre-ccooked practices. However, the framework is highly practical and it proved to be helpful in this kind of situation.
It's a quick read, with a very effective prose, therefore it's a good time investment.
Ma note de lecture en Français ici
Aug 27, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I learned about this book after helping a client design a set of guidelines for lifting off new teams as part of an Agile transformation. My beliefs in how to effectively liftoff teams seems very similar to Diana's so I didn't get many insights from reading it.

That said, if you're new to lifting off teams, or are a budding coach/scrum master, this is a great, easy to read reference guide. If you're an experienced coach or consultant, there are likely a couple of nuggets you could pickup from it
May 14, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

Before I was 10% into this book, I was already learning new practices I could put to work with my clients. As the authors point out, every day brings an opportunity for a team to lift off their work into a new realm of performance. The this book has a combination of great research into what makes teams start well, along with many valuable practices that you can call upon any time. This book can be a hard read at times, but it will be well worth any attention you can give it.
Brian Button
Almost immediately after reading this book, I was able to out it into practice. I found immediate payback in helping teams creat visions, missions, and mission tests that they could rally around, rather than documents that sat on a shelf.

I found the book very readable, full of great information, and and I'm excited to apply it to a full chartering process as soon as I can.
This book has two parts: the first part tells you how to go about planning a project kick-off meeting and the second part describes more in depth one of the activities in that meeting: the agile chartering process.

The bits it does cover are good and useful. I would have wanted to see more about release planning however: creating the initial backlog and release plan.
Apr 03, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I see the value of this book not in reading it - I found it almost a bit of a struggle to actually dry-read it. It's real value is in doing a lift-offs, in chartering with your teams and there are great, clear, concise instructions in the book how to achieve that - so just pick the book and take a team through it.
Gerard Chiva
Nov 06, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great book, for Agile teams or for any other kind of team. Although Kindle version is quite awful.

Practices for setting the foundations of great team performance, from the beginning.

Must read for all team coaches.
Dec 30, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a great book for launching new teams or new projects. I appreciated the practical examples and outlines for creating my own kick-offs.
Dec 26, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Helpful book when starting with a new team on a new project. I really enjoyed reading it and can't wait to try some of it...
David Lokietz
Jan 10, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: agile, business
A great source when you need to kick off a new project, re-charge a project or simply try to flush out dysfunction...

This is one of my go to books to refresh techniques and stimulate next steps.
Ravi Sinha
Tends to be a bit on the academic/dry side, but a handful of important insights to carry forth in project leadership and software delivery.
Katie Shields
This was recommended to me by an Agile Coach. It was helpful in wrapping my mind around creating a vision vs a mission.
Nov 11, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: scrum
If you are moving into Scrum and are looking into creating a dynamic self-organization this book can be a good help see also
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