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Kaizen Land - Gamifying Stand-Up and Overcoming Anti Patterns


Learn how the gingerbread men are taking over the daily Stand-Up and forever changing the mornings of development teams everywhere.

Have your Daily Stand-Ups become stale? We’ll talk through the evolution of an idea that ended up demolishing monotony, obliterating anti-patterns and spawning smiles… and to think, it all started with my daughter and I playing Candy Land!

We’ll talk through the implementation of a game board during one team’s stand-up through the infectious adoption and evolution of its existence. You’ll hear how teams tackled some of their greatest impediments and helped build a zone of psychological safety all while having fun.

By the end of this session, you’ll be prepared to bring this back to your team and create your own success stories.


Set the Stage (5 minutes)

  • Introduction to your speaker
  • Experience with Transformations, Organizational Debt and General Dysfunction

Anti-Patterns and Positive Behaviors (10 minutes)

  • Real life parallels and why they happen
  • Identifying dirty laundry
  • Highlighting positive behavior

A Game is Born (10 minutes)

  • Extrinsic Rewards vs. Intrinsic Motivation
  • The construction of Kaizen Land
  • Assigning values to actions

The Implementation and Evolution (10 minutes)

  • Initial roll-out and reactions
  • The infectious spread
  • Distributed teammate adoption

Lessons Learned (10 minutes)

  • Outcomes and observations
  • How to bring Kaizen Land to your team
  • Q & A

Learning Outcome

  • Embrace the importance of Daily Stand-Up within development teams and bring added value to the ceremony
  • Understand why Anti-Patterns develop and better assess which ones are in the team's ability to control
  • Promote transparency through the adoption of psychological safety
  • Increase gamification and the value for such

Jess Long

Jess Long is an Enterprise Agile Coach at Barclays in the US. She has an education in Organizational Management and over 15 years of professional experience in IT. Jess is also a writer, an international speaker and mother with a passion for driving meaningful stories across multiple iterations in all facets of life. Transforming Corporate America and living to tell about it is no small feat. She keeps some level of sanity by finding humor in otherwise absurd situations. When she's not coaching, she can be found on the beach with her 7-year-old daughter and 5-year-old identical twin boys or kayaking along the shoreline. Besides being featured on multiple podcasts and blogs, her speaking portfolio includes a multitude of conferences spanning Australia, Portugal and various states in the US.