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Diana Larsen: Empowering Agile Leaders for Team Resilience


Diana Larson, co-author of Lead without Blame, will be speaking at Madison's Scrum Day conference

Scrum Day is pleased to welcome Diana Larsen, co-author of ‘Lead without Blame’ as a speaker at this year’s Scrum Day conference scheduled for September 14, 2023, in Madison, Wisconsin.


Official Backstory


Diana Larsen is a renowned figure in the Agile community, bringing with her a wealth of experience and knowledge gained from her background in high tech organizations. Even before the Agile movement took shape around the Manifesto, Diana was already deeply involved in designing and redesigning work processes using Socio-Technical Systems approaches. Her expertise in technical systems, team-based work, and leadership led her to make significant contributions to the Agile community. Diana's passion for fostering continuous improvement, team retrospectives, and team chartering has been instrumental in shaping the Agile Fluency® Model and, most recently, her focus on leading for team resilience.


What's the story behind "Lead without Blame"?


Diana Larsen's bestselling book, "Lead without Blame," is a collaborative effort between her and Tricia Broderick. The inspiration for the book came from an editor who encouraged them to delve into retrospectives beyond Agile. As they explored their shared interests and contemplated potential writing directions, they realized they had invaluable insights to offer about creating effective team work environments. Both Diana and Tricia had discovered that many conventional leadership approaches actually hindered team motivation and resilience rather than fostering them. They had personal stories to share about nurturing teams to produce their best work. It was during this exploration that the concept of leading without blame emerged.


In essence, Diana and Tricia advocate for leaders to relinquish old habits of blaming, shaming, criticizing, and judging, as well as deficit thinking. These detrimental habits run contrary to the desired outcomes we hope to achieve with them. Instead, they propose that leaders and leadership groups should focus on supporting learning, bringing out the best in their teams, and building resilience in the face of the challenges of our ever-changing work landscape. By sharing motivators, habits, and factors to embrace, they challenge leaders to adapt and thrive in a dynamic world of work.


What are you looking forward to about Scrum Day?


When asked about her expectations for Scrum Day, Diana expressed her excitement about reconnecting with familiar faces and meeting new colleagues who have all embarked on unique journeys over the past few years. With the global shift to remote work, everyone has a story to tell about their experiences—whether it felt like working from home or living at work. The event offers a valuable opportunity to exchange insights, learnings, and fresh perspectives gained from navigating these unprecedented times. Diana looks forward to engaging in meaningful conversations, fostering collaboration, and collectively shaping the future of Agile practices.


Diana Larsen's presence at Scrum Day promises to be a highlight for attendees. With her extensive knowledge and expertise in team dynamics, continuous improvement, and leadership, she will undoubtedly provide valuable insights and inspire individuals to lead without blame, foster team resilience, and contribute to the growth of the Agile community as a whole.









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