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Past Events

Entries in Backlogs (3)


September Meeting: Backlog Blunders- Avoiding Common Pitfalls to Unleash Your Agile Team's Productivity

When: September 8, 2016  (Second Thursday) Networking: 5:30 - 6:00 pm Program: 6:00 - 7:30 pm.

For an agile team, a proper backlog is as important as air.  Properly refined and groomed, the backlog provides a clear picture of the work to be done and the most important aspects of that work so the team can focus their energy and operate at a steady, predictable rhythm.  Neglect the backlog and all sorts of badness begins to creep in: teams thrash - trying desperately to figure out what to work on, bad habits you thought had been extinguished begin to rear their ugly head, and the agile culture and mindset you've worked so hard to foster begins to falter.  The good news is that by getting intentional about your backlog you can keep things from coming off the rails.  In this talk we'll take a light-hearted look at what NOT to do with your backlog and along the way we'll learn how your backlog can keep your team firing on all cylinders.

Joe Combs has spent 20 years on the front lines of the software industry.  Joe holds a Bachelor of Computer Science from the University of Cincinnati and a Master of Computer Science from Northern Kentucky University.  He has served as a tech lead, architect, business analyst and scrummaster delivering real business value for companies like Swisscom, Sprint, FedEx, Convergys, General Electric, Ethicon, Luxottica and Quest Diagnostics.  For the last 10 years Joe has been a consultant for Systems Evolution, solving his clients most challenging problems.  Joe is an active scouting volunteer and a founding member of the NKU College of Informatics Alumni Council.


PMP's this event counts for 1 PDU

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June Meeting: Visualizing the Backlog with User Story Mapping

When: June 9, 2016  (Second Thursday) Networking: 5:30 - 6:00 pm Program: 6:00 - 7:30 pm.


User Story Mapping is a process to visualize your project, enhance transparency, and help resolve scope contention. In this hands on exercise, we will jointly create a user map, clearly defining order, minimal marketable features, and release plans.  


Phil Japikse is an international speaker, Microsoft MVP, ASPInsider, MCSD, CSM, and CSP, and a passionate member of the developer community.  He has been working with .NET since the first betas, developing software for over 30 years, and heavily involved in the agile community since 2005. Phil is co-author of best selling C# and the .NET 4.6 Frameworks (, the Lead Director for the Cincinnati .NET User’s Group ( and the Cincinnati Software Architect Group, co-hosts the Hallway Conversations podcast (, founded the Cincinnati Day of Agile (, and volunteers for the National Ski Patrol. During the day, Phil works as a Principal Consultant and the Agile Practice Director with Strategic Data Systems ( Phil enjoys to continuously learn new tech and is always striving to improving his craft. You can follow Phil on twitter via and read his blog at

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January Meeting: Cultivating Agile Requirements

In an Agile environment, maintaining an ever-changing backlog of requirements can be intimidating, exhausting, and overwhelming. Without a sustainable process to cultivate the backlog, the Agile team can struggle to deliver value to its customers.

In this session, we will:

  1. Talk about changes that happen to the backlog and why those changes are important
  2. Identify common stages in the maturity of backlog items
  3. Discuss why “when” the team does various backlog preparation activities is very importantWalk through three steps you can use to define a backlog maturity process in your environment
    • Determine your goal state
    • Identify questions for your backlog items
    • Name and define maturity stages
  4. Propose techniques to make your stages of maturity visible

Come discover how to create an adaptable process to handle constant backlog change and provide valuable information at the right time for your team and stakeholders.

Mark is an experienced Agile practitioner, coach, and Scrum Master for Cardinal Solutions Group who has over 10 years of experience as a Business Analyst. He is a sought-out speaker whose presentations at regional industry groups and conferences have been very popular, and who recently spoke at the international Agile 2014 convention. Six years ago, Mark joined an Agile project as a member of a Scrum team, later taking on Scrum Master activities. He has found the approach empowering and energizing, and is now consulting with other Scrum teams, coaching them through their transformation. Outside of work, Mark loves making music, learning, and enjoying time with his wife and two young, energetic boys.

PMP's: This event counts for 1 PDU

Networking: 5:30 - 6:00 pm
Program: 6:30 - 7:30 pm

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