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Monday, August 6 • 14:00 - 15:15
The Power of Curiosity, the Limits of Expertise, and the Danger of Earned Dogmatism (John Krewson)

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Is cholesterol bad for you? Does flossing work? The answers to these questions seem to change with every new study. It can be frustrating to learn that what we once held to be true is now false, and vice versa. It's certainly better than the alternative; if we weren't curious enough to challenge our assumptions, we'd still be using leeches to suck the diseases out of our bodies. This is the perpetual cycle of the scientific community: challenge assumptions, retest, and learn. As much as we take this learning mindset to heart in the Agile community, sometimes we fall short in practice. As product owners, we put large batches of software into production without testing whether or not our customers want it. As coaches, we advise our customers to implement good practices that worked well a decade ago, without regard to better practices that have emerged in their place. Why do we do this? The answer might be found in the concept of Earned Dogmatism. The Earned Dogmatism Effect suggests that we become closed-minded and dogmatic in our thinking when we allow ourselves to be labeled as an expert in a field or domain. In this talk, John Krewson will offer several antidotes to Earned Dogmatism. Together, we'll challenge several closely held Agile assumptions, we'll investigate curiosity as an alternative to expertise, and we'll connect curiosity and a growth mindset to improving as agile coaches and product owners.

Learning Outcomes:
  • By the end of this session, attendees will be able to answer the following questions:
  • * What is Earned Dogmatism?
  • * How is my expertise hindering my ability to coach? To be a product owner?
  • * What are my own hidden assumptions?
  • * What is a growth mindset?
  • * How can curiosity enable a growth mindset?
  • * How can curiosity make me a better coach? A better product owner?

avatar for John Krewson

John Krewson

President, Sketch Development
John Krewson is the founder and President of Sketch Development Services, a software development studio that provides Agile coaching, consulting and training. Sketch delivers software for its customers using Agile principles and practices, and helps other organizations with their... Read More →

Monday August 6, 2018 14:00 - 15:15 PDT
Marriott Salon 3 & 4