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Agile Portfolio Management Game

Lately I have been doing a lot of work with organizations on Portfolio Management. I needed to create a fun game to give an introduction to the challenges of an Agile Portfolio without being overwhelming.

In April 2011, I attended the Agile Game Incubator at Agile 2011¬†and utilized the PLAID technique that Mike and Don taught us. This framework was extremely helpful for focusing me on my objectives and building a solid game. If you haven’t checked out tastycupcakes.org and used some of the amazing games, you must check it out.

My goal was to create something meaningful, yet playful, that had a team building element included. I created some fun personas to the game to let people role play and laugh a lot. I’ve used this game successfully with clients and also with my fellow coaches at the Scrum Coaches Retreat 2011.

Here is an introduction to the game that I created and you can find a link to download the facilitator’s kit at the bottom of this post. If you have any improvements or suggestions, please comment.

Problem

The management team of Zebco, Inc. has too many projects, too few resources. This game teaches teams how to prioritize the people and resources they have available and try to maximize their effectiveness.

Some randomness is introduced by the dice roll. This helps simulate reality when unexpected things happen and makes the game more fun.

This game is sized for a team of 3-7 people. For larger groups, split them into smaller teams of 3-7 people and provide them with extra copies of all materials.

Lead Objectives

  • Learn how delicate the balance of projects can be
  • Learn how to manage limited resources
  • Learn to deal with conflict
Downloads
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Comments

  1. Jade – thanks for sharing the game. I got to participate in the game at the the group at the Scrum Coaches Retreat. We found it very useful to illustrate the basics of actively managing a project portfolio around a number of key dimensions. I enjoyed the addition of personas in the game, the dynamics and uncertainty that was modeled through the dice, and the competition factor that came from playing against another company (team). I look forward to utilizing the game in my coaching.

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