GTFS speakers 2022


SPEAKERS for the 14th Annual GIVE THANKS FOR SCRUM event (2022)


The Discipline that Scrum Promotes

The latest data on success rates of Agile Teams shows 58% failure to deliver on time with unhappy customers, the antithesis of Agile. This translates into 53% of Agile Transformations failing and of these failures 67% go bankrupt or are acquired. Years of analysis of these failures at Scrum Inc. using Toyota A3 analysis and other tools with thousands of companies has shown these failures are primarily caused by two factors – failure to implement Scrum discipline by managers, or (2) failure to implement Scrum discipline at the team level by Scrum Masters.

This talk will focus on the solutions developed for these problems – (1) the training of Leadership in the Agile Mindset, and (2) the training of Scrum Masters in removing well-understood blocks to team performance. Several important case studies in Fortune 100 companies will be used as training examples.

Dr. Jeff Sutherland is an individual that needs no introduction, but let’s take a shot at it.  Jeff is a former US Air Force “Top Gun” and the co-creator of the Scrum framework. This model, developed in 1993 and formalized in 1995 with Ken Schwaber, has since been adopted by the vast majority of software development companies around the world.  Jeff is a leading expert on how the framework has evolved to meet the needs of today’s business. Realizing its benefits are not limited to software development, he has adapted this strategy to several other industries including finance, healthcare, education and telecom.  Scrum and Scrum@Scale are now widely adopted and create hyper-productive development teams.  As founder and Chairman of Scrum Inc., creator of Scrum@Scale, Senior Advisor and Agile Coach to OpenView Venture Partners, Jeff trains executives and shares agile best practices with organizations around the globe.


What does Discipline Mean for Professional Scrum?

It often comes as a shock to people that observe Scrum for the first time, but discipline is a fundamental characteristic of a good Scrum Team. Discipline not in following mechanical processes that make no sense but disciplined in pursuit of value while removing as much complexity from that process as possible. Discipline manifests itself in many ways ranging from running the Daily Scrum at the same time and place every day to ensuring that Done means Done. But when does discipline become overhead? What happens when the process becomes more important than the outcome?

In this talk, Dave describes what he has observed as good and bad discipline and how effective teams balance the need for discipline with the need for flexibility and creativity. He illustrates how good discipline leads to value, innovation, and joy and how bad discipline leads to dogma, isolation, and waste.

DAVE WEST is the CEO of He is a frequent keynote speaker and is a widely published author of articles. He also is the co-author of two books, The Nexus Framework For Scaling Scrum and Head First Object-Oriented Analysis and Design. He led the development of the Rational Unified Process (RUP) and then worked with Ivar Jacobson running the North American business for IJI. Then managed the software delivery practice at Forrester research where he was VP and research director. Prior to joining he was Chief Product Officer at Tasktop where he was responsible for product management, engineering and architecture.


Ryan Ripley & Todd Miller

Fixing Your Scrum

Broken Scrum practices limit your organization’s ability to take full advantage of the agility Scrum should bring: The development team isn’t cross-functional or self-organizing, the product owner doesn’t get value for their investment, and stakeholders and customers are left wondering when something–anything–will get delivered. Learn how experienced Scrum masters balance the demands of these three levels of servant leadership, while removing organizational impediments and helping Scrum teams deliver real-world value. Discover how to visualize your work, resolve impediments, and empower your teams to self-organize and deliver using advanced coaching and facilitation techniques that honor and support the Scrum values and agile principles.

Todd Miller has practical experience as a Scrum Master, Product Owner, Software Developer, and Agile coach on a variety of technical and creative projects across a multitude of industries. He has been a professional Scrum trainer with since 2016. Todd lives in Pennsylvania with his wife Jessica and two children. His blogs can be found on the website and his twitter handle is @todd_miller11. Todd is the co-author of Fixing Your Scrum: Practical Solutions for Common Scrum Problems.

A professional Scrum trainer with, Ryan Ripley has experience as a software developer, manager, director, and Scrum Master at various Fortune 500 companies in the medical device, wholesale, and financial services industries. The host of “Agile for Humans,” the top agile podcast on iTunes. He recently co-wrote Fixing Your Scrum: Practical Solutions for Common Scrum Problems – published by PragProg. Ryan lives in Indiana with his wife, Kristin, and three children. He blogs at and is on Twitter @ryanripley.

The OpenSpace Agility Handbook: Mezick, Daniel J., Pontes, Deborah, Shinsato, Harold, Kold-Taylor, Louise, Sheffield, Mark: 9780984875337: Books


Can Great Scrum Teams Emerge Without Discipline?

Discipline Creates habits, habits make routines, and routines become who you are daily. Self discipline allows you to stay focused on your goals. It enables you to stay in control of yourself and of your reaction to any situation. Self-discipline is like a muscle: the more you train it, the stronger you become. Scrum is the framework to strengthen the team-discipline muscle in service to better outcomes. The team is ultimately responsible for and accountable to each other for team-discipline. In this talk Deb will explore how to create the environment which invites team-discipline to emerge.

Deb Pontes has been a Boston-area Scrum professional for more than 10 years. Most recently, she has held Transformation Lead positions at Ascensus (Newton MA) and Fidelity (Boston MA.) Deb is also a co-author of The OpenSpace Agility Handbook ( and a proponent of 

Jason Tanner Mike Whitaker

Jason Tanner & Michael Whitaker

Exploring Levels of Discipline for Scrum Teams

When teams start using the Scrum framework, they embark on a journey. The Scrum Guide defines the “rules” for the journey, however when difficulties arise, teams must find the resolve and appropriate level of discipline to continue the journey. This interactive session explores the various levels of discipline for Scrum Teams at any point on their journeys. We’ll introduce a framework for evaluating the necessary level of discipline based on the current state of the team to help them to align on the right level of discipline for their context and situation. Mike Whitaker will share his perspective as a newer Scrum practitioner while Jason Tanner will add his insights from practicing and teaching Scrum to thousands of people.

Jason Tanner is the CEO of the training and consulting firm Applied Frameworks. He leads the company’s growth and consulting practice, and teaches as a Scrum Alliance Certified Scrum Trainer.  Jason has led Agile transformations at several Fortune 500 companies, including MassMutualCapital One, and CoStar Group. He also regularly leads engagements focused on product and portfolio management.  Jason co-created the Scrum Alliance advanced learning programs designed for the professional development of thousands of Scrum Masters and Product Owners. His background includes an undergrad in engineering from Cornell, 9 years in leadership roles in the US Marines, and an MBA from Duke.

Mike Whitaker is an Associate Consultant with Applied Frameworks, Michael coaches teams and business leaders to achieve results through business agility, product management, design thinking, collaboration at scale, and servant leadership.  Additionally, as a veteran Intelligence officer, Michael has vast experience researching and providing high-value analysis to senior US government and DoD audiences. Before joining Applied Frameworks, Michael was the Senior Information Technology Security Training Specialist at Zermount Inc. He trained and coached Transportation Security Administration (TSA) personnel on cyber governance, risk, and compliance requirements following the Risk Management Framework. Michael holds a bachelor’s degree in Leadership Studies from Regent University. In addition, he is a Certified SAFe Program Consultant® (SPC), a Certified Scrum Master and a Certified Scrum Product Owner.

Avi Schneier

Avi Schneier is a Principal Agile Transformation Consultant & Trainer at SCRUM INC and a contributing editor of the Scrum@Scale Guide. Avi’s current emphasis is “Scrum Beyond IT”, working within various industries from biotech to consumer-packaged goods. Avi sees Scrum as THE key to delivering better results through innovation where rapid change is now the norm.

Daniel Mezick Photo


DANIEL MEZICK is an expert on business agility and an author of three books on organizational change. A frequent keynote speaker at industry conferences, Daniel’s list of clients include Capital One, INTUIT, Adobe, CIGNA, Pitney Bowes, SIEMENS Healthcare, Harvard, and dozens of smaller enterprises.

His books include  THE CULTURE GAME , which describes 16 specific patterns that extend Agile ideas across the organization, beyond software; the OPEN SPACE AGILITY HANDBOOK , which pioneered the Open Engagement Models concept for agile and digital transformations; and INVITING LEADERSHIP: Invitation-Based Change in the New World or Work™, which introduced the concept of Invitation-Based Change and introduced the domain of Authority Studies. INVITING LEADERSHIP published in 2018 and upon publication it reached #1 on the Amazon bestseller list in the Organizational Learning category.

Daniel’s enterprise consulting practice is built upon the core concepts found inside these books. He conducts workshops based on these books, and also offers enterprise Agile coaching, Agile training programs for teams, and management consulting. You can learn more and contact him at