© 2017 by Maria Vandenburg

Current Inspiration

July 10th, 2017


This week is an oldie but a goodie.

I spent a year in New Zealand in 2011 and discovered this incredible group called Six60. I saw them at a packed house where I attempted to elbow my way up front. I ended up settling for just hanging back and listening. When I returned to Seattle in 2012, they magically happened to be performing a few weeks after I got home in Portland (which is about 3 hours outside of Seattle). Not being well known in the states just yet, there were only about 10 other people in attendance, so I felt like I got my own intimate performance.


They were originally scheduled to play in Portland again on July 27th (in what would have been my unofficial sendoff party), but alas they had Visa issues. 


I've changed the song I've featured on this page about four times now, but ultimately ended up with one called "Only to Be"


And we also have week two of a double dose, yet another book that I am still not finished with.

This weeks is "SCRUM The Art of Doing Twice the Work in Half the Time"  by Jeff Sutherland and J.J Sutherland. Similar to last week, you wouldn't think that a book about Project Management would be all that inspiring, but it's the Sutherland's passion and vision that got to me.



Here are a few of favorite quotes thus far:


"Scrum comes from the game of rugby, and it refers to the way a team works together to move the ball down the field. Careful alignment, unity of purpose, and clarity of goal come together."


"The best companies used an overlapping development process that was faster and more flexible. The teams were cross-functional. The teams had autonomy. They were empowered to make their own decisions. And they had a transcendent purpose. They were reaching for something higher than themselves."



And to make it full circle part deux, I'll tie it back to New Zealand



"(after viewing the Haka - a Maori warrior ceremony) the team came up with four aspects worthy of emulation. The first was intense focus on the goal, built up and energized by the Maori chant.  The second was radical collaboration - arms and bodies locked together, pushing for the same goal. The third was the hunger to crush - anything in their way was to be obliterated. The fourth was universal excitement when any team member broke through with the ball. Who it was didn't matter. That it happened was cause for celebration."


Key Takeaways are (at least in what I have read so far):


-Planning is Useful. Blindly Following Plans is Stupid

-Inspect and Adapt

-Change or Die 

-Fail Fast so you can Fix Easy

-Observe. Orient. Decide. Act

-Look Outward for Answers

-Don't Guess. Plan, Do, Check, Act

-Shu Ha Ri - First, learn the rules and the forms, and once you've mastered them, make innovations. Finally, in a heightened state of mastery, discard the forms and just be - with all the learning internalized and decisions made almost unconsciously.

-Small Wins

-Blame is Stupid

-Multitasking makes you Stupid

-Half-Done is not done (I should take a lesson in these last two, story of my life at the moment)

-Do it Right the First Time

-Don't be Unreasonable

-No Assholes

-Strive for Flow


There's more, but I'm not quite done yet.

Just wanted to share what I've found so far. If I ever do end up starting my own company, I'm thinking I would plan to adopt many of things written in this book.


Hope everyone is well