Agile; Standup

New beginnings

It’s the new year, and as we big goodbye to a challenging year, we are also gearing up for a new year. Often at this time of the year, we’re setting goals, or perhaps doing a Past Year Review. It’s a time of new beginnings, fresh starts. I love the ‘newness’ of the new year, but I also remind myself that every moment is an opportunity for a new beginning. And while the new year is a great time to begin things, every new day, new week, new month, new moment in time, is an opportunity for a new start. This mindset helps because whether we like it or not, our best laid plans can come undone. Things go unexpectedly wrong, and in this age of fast-paced change, this is happening more often than we would prefer.

So while I wish you a happy new year, don’t forget that you can have as many fresh starts as you like in what I can only predict will be an even more unpredictable year than before. With this in mind, I’m looking forward to sharing what I’ve been up to and what is coming up (well, at least what I have planned – let’s see ?).

Let’s continue to use this time of rapid change to calibrate, collaborate and iterate together.

The Agile Project Manager

p.s. Missed November? You can find it here.


We hosted Christmas in our new home! This was particularly exciting as after years of living in apartments and townhouses, this was our first Christmas in a house. Pandemic travel restrictions narrowed our options but we were still able to have Damo’s family visit which was wonderful. Christmas in Australia makes catering easy – seafood, cold meats, salads and snacks. While we may not be Master Chefs, Damo and I make a great cooking team, and with the relatives all chipping in, we enjoyed a few days of relaxing fun with food, wine and laughter in abundance.

I also managed just over a week of proper time off. As a business owner this is a rarity, and Christmas is the best time, and I took advantage of the (relatively) quiet period for some downtime. Time in the garden, long walks and board games made for a wonderful staycation.

What am I working on?

Scaled Agile Framework and Agile Project Management Workshops continue to dominate, which has been amazing. It’s great to see so many people maximise their downtime by leveling up their knowledge in Agile ways of working. In this rapidly changing business environment, an investment in your own capability might be one of the most long-lasting decisions you can make. Virtual workshops are still the norm and look like being this way for a while. My clients are returning to physical workplaces slowly and for limited activities. They have all mastered collaborating virtually so well, and I’m pleased that most people I’m working with are adopting Atlassian’s rule of either everyone physically present, or everyone online. At Pretty Agile, we do not do hybrid workshops, which has put an end to the lone ‘second class citizen’ dialling into a crowded room of side conversations.

What’s getting in my way?

After such a crazy year spent a lot in ‘reaction’ mode, I’m finding it challenging to spend time on non-urgent but important things. If you are familiar with Stephen Covey’s work, he refers to that as Quadrant 2. I think a lot of this is due to so much urgency happening during the year, it’s difficult to get motivated to do something that’s not immediately pressing. I’ve just started using to capture some longer-term projects I want to spend time on. How do you ensure you don’t give in to the ‘tyranny of the urgent’?

Next Month

What are YOUR actions?

Here’s where we calibrate, collaborate and iterate. I would love to hear from you:

·       What did YOU accomplish? What are YOU working on? What’s getting in YOUR way?

·       How are you managing the things that GET IN YOUR WAY?

·       What are the actions you are now going to take?

Join in the conversation on the Facebook page.



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About Emma Sharrock

Emma is the author of The Agile Project Manager: Thrive in Change with Agile. An experienced change leader, Emma is passionate about working with people to facilitate successful change. Emma utilises Agile techniques, coupled with the Agile mindset to coach leaders and teams to achieve their business goals.