VFQ: Things we enjoyed in January

Welcome to VFQ’s first blog post of 2016. It’s a reflective one (not on 2015—no, we’re too late for that) thinking about what good things we had going on in January.


1. Our latest Product Management graduates demonstrated their new approach to the leadership team.

A lot of the work we do with VFQ isn’t actually work that we do, it’s the work our learners do when they apply the principles and practices we teach them. So it’s only right that the people doing the learning get themselves in front of their leadership team and their colleagues in their organization.

In January five of our latest Product Management Graduates presented their work on three ideas and shared success stories of applying new ways of working in a Showcase within their organization.

One group measured the speed (the flow) of work in order to generate more predictability around when products/services would be ready to go-to-market. Another of the graduates worked on gathering fast feedback from the market, and took an early stage prototype of the final product to potential customers to get some more insight on it’s value. A $2,000 investment rather than a $20,000 investment for a similar amount of learning seems like a good idea to us. And finally, another VFQ-er used some of the tools from our Product Management Pathway to generate more accurate personas of their target market, helping them shape their value propositions and make sure they were tackling the most important pains/gains of their customers.

Congratulations to those involved and well done on spreading the word through the rest of their organization.


2. We read an article on the US Federal Government’s stance on agile development.


The US’s Government Services Administration “18F” team was set up last year to assist government agencies to move to more agile ways of working in light of poor rollouts of large systems like HealthCare.gov. We can compare 18F to the UK’s Government Digital Service. Both organizations are doing great work in order to transform the way change is brought about in government departments and agencies. In the UK, you can sample some of these changes when it comes to re-newing your driving licence (as I did recently) or searching for information via Companies House.

It’s great to see government and federal support for new ways of working and hopefully developing more customer-focused systems.


3. One of our partners was featured in the Huffington Post.

Ella Thuiner, a VFQ partner in Switzerland, wrote an article for the Huffington Post to promote her book “Banks of the Future”. Read what she had to say here: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/ella-thuiner/creative-innovative-banks_b_8750490.html

That’s all for January. We had a lot more interesting stuff to report, but it’s the middle of February now, so we thought we’d get it out now and be done with it!

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