HomeBook Recommendations (Templated) - Ariel Partners

Here are some books we like. Click on the title for the LeanPub or Amazon page.

Agile Thought Leadership

Actionable Agile Metrics for Predictability

Daniel Vacanti

When Will It Be Done

Daniel Vacanti

Both are extremely important, should be required reading for all coaches and trainers.

Software for your Head: Core Protocols for Creating and Maintaining Shared Vision

Jim McCarthy (2002)

Extremely thought provoking. Years ahead of its time in my opinion. Explains what is effective but not how to get there.

Kanban Change Leadership

Klaus Leopold

Practical Kanban

Klaus Leopold

Rethinking Agile

Klaus Leopold

Very much enjoy Klaus’ writing, and he is clearly honing his vision and sharpening his writing skills with each book. Introduces the concept of Flight Levels, which we like but must admit we did not fully grok until reading his latest Rethinking Agile.

Some Books a Little Bit Dated But Still Valuable

Agile Management for Software Engineering

David J Anderson

Precursor, written way before LeanKanban

Lessons in Agile Management

David J Anderson

Fascinating account that explains thought process as LeanKaban was being conceived and codified. Valuable anecdotes help explain motivations and benefits of evolutionary approach.

Agile: The Good, the Hype, and the Ugly

Bertrand Meyer

Part polemic, part paean from the inventor of the Eiffel programming language and the author of “Object Oriented Software Construction” the definitive work on that topic. Focuses mostly on Scrum. Interestingly, Kanban answers most of the author’s nitpicks with “agile.” It is in our opinion important and worthwhile for all Kanban coaches and trainers to be aware of agile’s “failure modes.”

Here are a couple related articles:

Why “Agile’ and especially Scrum are terrible
Michael O. Church

The tax you are paying for using Scrum
Martin Cerruti

Specific Agile Techniques Useful for Software Teams

User Story Mapping: Discover the Whole Story, Built the Right Product

Jeff Patton

Event Storming

Alberto Brandolini (LeanPub early access)

Specification by Example

Gojko Adzic

FIT for Developing Software

Ward Cunningham, Rick Mugridge

Analysis Patterns

Martin Fowler

The Phoenix Project

Gene Kim

Release It!

Michael Nygard

Show Me the Numbers: Designing Tables and Graphs to Enlighten

Stephen Few (2004)

We think his later 2009 book “Now you see it, simple visualization techniques for quantitative analysis” is even better!

Continuous Delivery

Jez Humble

Exploring the Diversity and Range of Agile Methods

Extreme Programming Explained

Kent Beck

Reading this in 1999 changed the course of our careers!

This is Lean

Modig, Niklas, Ahlstrom, Par

Very clear explanation of Lean

Coaching Agile Teams

Lyssa Adkins

Despite the general-sounding title, this is pretty scrum-specific


Corey Ladas

Showing its age; many of the recommendations or techniques have been superseded by better ones. However, we still prefer this due to the quality and clarity of the exposition over newer Scrumban books

The Goal

Eliyahu Goldratt

Lean for manufacturing and physical processes

Forecasting and Metrics

Actionable Agile Metrics for Predictability

Daniel Vacanti

When Will It Be Done

Daniel Vacanti

Extremely important, should be required reading for all coaches and trainers.


Vasco Duarte

Fun read full of wisdom. The keynote video on his website is an absolute gem. Unfortunately it is paywalled.

Software Estimation without Guessing

George Dinwiddie

A brand new book and worthy successor to replace the venerable scrum-based estimation book by Mike Cohn Agile Estimation and Planning. George covers a lot of ground, but in my opinion misses a few important points regarding large-scale Agile efforts within the federal government space (admittedly, this is an extremely specialized environment). Nevertheless there is a great deal of excellent material to mine here.

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Copyright 2023 Ariel Partners. All rights reserved.

Copyright 2023 Ariel Partners. All rights reserved.