Our First AMI Open Space

Did you notice this? Yes? Good! No? How come?!

Do you know what it was? No? Come on…

Ok, I will tell you about it. It was our first ever AMI Open Space.

It is an event (or usually an “unconference”) with a predefined theme. However, nobody knows exactly what will happen during the event. Why? Because it is in the hands of the participants. People are given the time and space to raise their own questions, form groups around topics and freely discuss them.

The four principles and one law describing the event are:

  1. Whoever comes is the right people…
  2. Whenever it starts is the right time…
  3. Whatever happens is the only thing that should have…
  4. When it's over, it's over…
  5. Law of Two Feet – if you find out that you are not contributing nor learning, just use your feet and go someplace else.

At the beginning, we selected two topics for discussion:

  1. Are we ready for Agile in general?
  2. How do I implement Agile in my team?

The first topic was rather general and provided an opportunity for everybody to share their opinion regarding how our company is adapting to this new way of working. We even touched on how the school system influences our ability to apply Scrum in our professional lives. We shared a lot of experiences, feelings and impressions.

The second one was different. It was more focused, as we discussed specific strategies for how to use Scrum within one team in particular. I am really glad that we had colleagues from this team present and had a chance to come up with ideas on how to support them. And as I promised to take action on the issues we uncovered during the Open Space, I have assured this team that I will help them with Scrum. Yes, I know, now I will definitely have to do it. A promise is a promise.

Our first Open Space had 12 attendees and lasted for 2 hours. But trust me when I tell you that we could have spent even more time discussing the topics.

This first event was focused on our software development division, but our plan is to host these events with each group in our Brno, Czech Republic, office. So, if you like the idea, please come next time. And if you don’t feel like waiting that long, you know where to find me. Stop by and let’s have a chat!

And always remember—have courage and be kind.

BTW: We also wanted to take some pictures of our juicy discussions, but we were so into them that we totally forgot to do it! We will do better next time…I promise.

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