Today I want to share my joy with you. I am going into another sprint of my digital nomad life, to serve a client in Miami. An ex-New-yorker, who dramatically change her life, professionally and personally to move to where her family and she are treated best. After that, I will embark on a new adventure in Mexico City for a great journey of discovery, including introspection that will maybe lead to a possible Renovatio.
Some of you have asked me some questions about what is agile Lounge.
So here is a little tale about what made me care enough to do it.
Who knows? Maybe it could inspire you too, in your own way, to do otherwise and be who you really want to be. It always starts by asking yourself: do I care enough?
Why is it called Agile Lounge?
I love everything about the Lounge culture. The music, the space, the fashion, the era of the jazzy lounge café, the retrofuturism, and the chillness it brings to my heart and I see what it does to a team.
Being a Scrum Master since 1999, evolving in pleasing teams and customers, I once transform a Friday Daily Standup into a Daily Lounge gathering of the Scrum Team. Where I was working at that time: the place had these amazing closed rooms with couches and sofas.
I decide to book one for every Friday Daily ”Stand-up” as I surprise my team by telling them: it’s Friday, let’s chill and let’s talk about how are we doing in the sprint, but also your life in general, about the delivery, about anything you learn this week and if there’s anything that stops you for achieving your goal or the team mission.
Team members start bringing coffee, and some snacks to share with others. We ended up doing our regular 8-13 minutes Daily and prolong talking about the business, IT news, who’s the new build master I will have to go kick his ass, etc… So up to 45 minutes of Friday Lounge. Sometimes we celebrated a discovery or a new process, sometimes it was a pre-retro or even a pre-planning and capacity check. Sometimes just a chill moment of introspection and storytelling of what they want to do next. Always, with music in the background, selected every week from a team member’s playlist.
The team start calling this ‘’Coach AF Scrum Lounge’’ thus, was born, 13 years ago the idea of the Agile Lounge®
In a coworking in Punta Nizuc in the spring of 2016, I started a business plan to offer business agility and scrum workshops, not only to clients with specific mandates, but also to anyone who would like to get to know what is agile, what is lean and everything about the new world of work that emerges since, in my case 1999.
While I was building the foundation of these new exclusive and innovative workshops with a tangible outcome for the client, a colleague, from one of my New York clients showed me a coworking spot in Bryant Park, in the revamp Bryant Park Studios where we could rent space just for training or to go meet and greet client on demand. I was amazed by the project.
Meanwhile, in Montreal, a barista friend of mind was opening her café and photo studio in Saint-Henri and was looking for a partner to come along on the adventure of a cross-functional café-studio-coworking. I was enthusiastic about having the Agile Lounge in that space, where people could come and have business agility and scrum advice while having a perfect cup of coffee. The Montreal place’s atmosphere was artsy and lounge, so the coworking build in the mezzanine of the old Beaux-Arts Building overlooking Bryant Park from 80th street back in NYC.
The funding needed to associate myself with the Montreal barista and the photographer was way too high at the time, and according to my business advisor and mentor, too risky adventure if I ended up the only left-right brain with 2 artists (no offense to right-brainer alone) in making it worth in a longterm. Trust me, I had several businesses related to events, entertainment, and dealing with a lot of amazing artists in the past, and despite the care that a guy like me put into making it work, you could burn out yourself when they don’t care. I didn’t want that.
Weeks passed, fall of 2016, in Old Montreal, walking with a great colleague and she brought me into this new café on Saint-Jacques: The Crew. Hidden secrete place in the once main branch of the Royal Bank building. While having a café in this astonishing place reminded me of the Tim Burton Gotham City Library where the Joker meet Kim Basinger: I said: ‘’That’s it’’. That is the Agile Lounge Place in Montréal!
Talking with Alex at the counter, explaining to us that the real project is a coworking and entrepreneur hub, I jump on the occasion of becoming a coworking member. Thus, I did my first Scrum Workshop with clients in that fall of 2016, also meeting prospects, giving 1:1 coaching and agile advice, with awesome fresh well roasted coffee! Exactly as I dreamed it back in Cancun.
I was able in 2017 to secure my spot at the Bryant park Studio and do the same with my NYC clientele. Soon, fall of 2017, I was also doing it at the IQ Space, a coworking spot in Toronto, an old CIBC bank.
Few remember that Scrum Beer #1 was held at the Crew, in November 2018 with 4 Origines showcasing their beer. Networker as I am, Scrum Beer 2 was the more official and with MeetUp: was held in January 2019 at the Brewery.
Voilà! I wanted to give you that tale from the Agile Lounge because you are many asking me this in emails. So I thought, as I am writing my book – project titled ‘’Next Level Agility’’ that I will answer my valuable subscriber of this value list, including those many asking about the Agile Lounge name origin and foundation of my brand.
I am in my 7th year of Agile Lounge as well as a coworker at Crew. I feel that we are entering a Renaissance, despite all the darkness that the world is showing us. As you could appreciate in this email banner, a picture of me in Tulum, just next to my 4th coworking space call the Digital Jungle, if you follow your heart, if you care enough about what you want to do and whom you want to be: only yourself and your thoughts could be your limits, don’t blame the system or other to quickly. Everything starts with CARE.
Do you care enough to think of it, and from your ideas and dreams, do you care enough to move it into action?
It’s not always easy, but when you know the principles, you could unleash the activation wiser. This is in a way, the best real McCoy personal agility that you could have.