speaker-info

Dan North

Optimiser of organisations, software and teams

Photo Credit : Mai Skou Nielsen

Who are you ?

I’m a continual learner, a 30-year programmer of several languages and technologies, a Systems Thinker, a husband and father, an accidental but committed Christian, an occasional drummer and percussionist, a keen cyclist and developing skier.

What do you do for a living ?

I work with different organisations helping them become more effective. This involves a mix of consulting, training, coaching and speaking along multiple dimensions, including technology, process, strategy, structure, and people. I work up and down the organisation, from C-suite executives to delivery teams, and front to back, from Technical Infrastructure through to Business and Operational teams.
My focus is on using lean and agile methods to establish and optimise flow of value through an organisation, and challenging the assumptions that have led to the present situation.

What do you want to speak about at FlowCon ?

Many organisations are taking on some kind of lean or agile transformation, often without knowing what that even means or why they should be doing it. I see a lot of middle and senior managers adopting methods like LeSS, SAFe, DAD and others that are strong on certification but vague on actual results. My talk challenges these methods and suggests there are more effective ways of beginning and sustaining transformation at scale.

What will make you say “waouh” at the end of the conference ?

If lots of people have been asking me questions about how to make their teams and organisations more effective!

What will make you think that attendees have learnt a lot during your session ?

Probably the same thing 🙂

More likely that going into 2019 I start hearing about them applying some of the ideas I talk about in my session.

What is your favorite word ?

What an excellent question! I think one of the most important words I use is empathy, seeing things from another’s perspective.

Another important word is paradigm, your mental model of the world. It is surprising how much we are locked in our own paradigm, and how uncomfortable it is to change this.

Finally (am I allowed to have this many?) I would say flow is the most important and challenging concept I find myself teaching executives and managers.

What is the sound, the noise that you love?

Another great question. One of my favourite human noises is when someone says “Oh!” as they understand something. Another, from a personal perspective, is my baby son shrieking with delight! I also love the sound when wine is first poured from a bottle. Not the pop of the cork, but the “dug-dug-dug-dug” noise as the wine starts to pour.

What is the plant, tree or animal which you would love to be reincarnated into ?

I don’t believe in reincarnation, but if I had to be an animal I would want to be the kind of creature that doesn’t take itself too seriously.

Maybe a social creature like a Bonobo monkey, or a dolphin.

What is the question you would have like us to ask you ?

My favourite smell!

For the record, it is the smell of rain on concrete after a spell of hot weather. I don’t know why, I just love that smell.

 

Session

SWARMing: Scaling Without A Religious Methodology