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How to initiate a DevOps Transformation (Video)

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Damon Edwards / 

Here is the full 30-minute video from the keynote I did at DevOps Days Mountain View 2013.

This talk address the single most common question I get asked:

“DevOps sounds great… but how do I go about introducing DevOps to my company?”

Which is usually followed by one or more of the following frustrated statements:

“My managers don’t get it”
“The Dev group won’t talk to me”
“The Ops group won’t talk to me”
“QA says I’m dangerous”
“I don’t know where to start”
“People say they are too busy getting real work done”
“Help! My boss told me to buy DevOps by next quarter or else”
“Everyone just argues about tools”

In this talk I give a condensed walk through of a 3 step process that we’ve found to work (who doesn’t love a 3 step process, right?):

1. Build the “why?” (the business case)
2. Build organizational alignment (the trickiest part… but there is another 5 step “workshop” process just for this!)
3. Continuous improvement loops (think: PDCA or Deming/Shewhart Cycles)

The process incorporates everything you would expect from a DevOps transformation (Lean and Systems Thinking, Value Stream Mapping, Waste Analysis, The 3 Ways, Silo busting, etc.) but it does so in a practical and approachable manner. You can even avoid using the word “DevOps” if it’s too politically charged in your organization.

This forms the core of what we do at DTO Solutions does with our DevOps Workshops (or “Service Delivery Workshops” for a non DevOps name). Through that work we’ve been fortunate enough to see this process in action at many different sizes and types of companies. But that being said, I’m always interested in more feedback and new ideas!

 



 

 

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Defining and Improving DevOps Culture (Videos)

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Damon Edwards / 

Culture. It’s the most mentioned and the most ignored part of the DevOps conversation.

Lots of lip service has been paid to the importance of culture (“It all starts with culture”, “DevOps is a cultural and professional movement”, “Culture over tools”, etc..). But just as fast as everyone agrees that culture is supreme, the conversation turns straight to tools, tools, and more tools.

Recently, John Willis, my fellow dev2ops.org contributor and DevOps Cookbook co-author, let this tweet fly:

John has been as big of a culture warrior as anyone — constantly fighting to elevate the importance of and the discussion around DevOps Culture. He later said that this tweet was part exasperation and part challenge.

It was obvious to John that the difference between high performing and low performing companies was their DevOps culture, not the tools. But rather than be satisfied by the default explanation of DevOps Culture maturity being either that a company “gets it” or “doesn’t get it”, John was challenging the community to dive deeper into the issue.

During the week of Velocity London and DevOps Days Rome, there were finally some presentations that answered that call and were all about the culture. I did a presentation on defining DevOps Culture and what high performing companies do to reinforce it (based on the work of DTO Solutions). Michael Rembetsy and Patrick McDonnell gave a great peek behind the scenes of Etsy’s transformation to a company with a fast moving and high performing culture. Mark Burgess (CFengine) gave an interesting talk on the importance of, and science behind, relationships.


(slides were updated after the presentation)

 

 

(when you watch Mark’s video you will understand why there are no slides posted here!)

Update: John Willis knocks it out of the park talking about the importance of culture and the classic influence of Deming on this recent episode of the Food Fight Show.

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Use DevOps to Turn IT into a Strategic Weapon

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Damon Edwards / 

As I’ve worked on the DevOps Cookbook with my co-authors, I’ve become increasingly conscious of the emphasis of focus of the DevOps community. Lots of attention has been paid to the effects of DevOps within the walls of an IT organization. Far less attention has been paid to the effects of DevOps across the broader company. Almost no attention has been paid the effects of DevOps outside the walls of the company, specifically in relation to other companies and the markets in which you are competing.
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Kanban and DevOps Roundtable (Video)

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Damon Edwards / 

Ok so it’s more of a semi-circle than a roundtable… I was at the first ever Kanban for DevOps class this past week in Sunnyvale, CA and after looking around the room I couldn’t let these folks go without getting them on video:

  • Luke Kanies (Puppet Labs)
  • John Willis (Enstratus)
  • Gene Kim (Author)
  • Dominica DeGrandis (David J. Anderson & Associates)

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