LSP Practitioners in Wales, UK?

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    I’m organising a conference in July 2015, I’m looking for a LSP practitioner that would be willing to give a 60 minute session on LSP.

    The conference is in Cardiff, Wales.

    Please get in touch if you can help.

    Patrizia Bertini

    Hi James,

    how exciting!
    I am London based LSP enthusiast, happy to help in any way and very curious to know more!
    What is the conference about?
    Who is organising it?
    I organised a conference in Italy last year, so if that experience can be of any help, get in touch!


    Hi Patrizia

    I’m the organiser, the conference itself is on ‘agile’ and for a long time I’ve been interested in how LSP can benefit the Scrum Masters and Agile Coaches out there.

    I’d love to have a chat about what we might be able to do.


    Eli De Friend

    Hi James,
    You are not the first person to use Agile and LSP in the same breath. In April at a Project Management conference, I was talking with a guy who ran a one and a half hour session on LSP and Agile. What bothered me was that he had only seen “LSP” once, at another conference, and instantly thought he could lecture on the subject. He confessed that what he was doing might not be real LSP, but it was fun and trendy.

    As an LSP facilitator, trainer in Project Management and member of the organising committee of the Swiss Project Management Congress, I feel that Agile/Scrum and LSP should be treated with respect. You can’t say you’re doing Agile, just because you don’t like using structure and you can’t say your doing LSP, just because you have a few bags of LEGO bricks in your Scrum Sprint Planning Meetings.

    There are a number of IT professionals within the LSP community, some of whom can probably give a good talk on the areas of synergy and complementarity between the two domains. Just be careful that the people offering to come to your conference actually know what they are talking about in both disciplines.

    For example, take a look at this selection of web sites and decide for yourself if the people involved are sufficiently knowledgeable in both areas:

    Serious Play – accelerate your transition to Agile

    What I find strange is that, if you read a brief synopsis of the Agile manifesto, such as the one below which I have shamelessly lifted from Wikipedia, you will find that, while not contradictory, Agile and LSP don’t have much in common. So what is all the fuss about?

    The Agile Manifesto is based on 12 principles:

    1. Customer satisfaction by rapid delivery of useful software
    2. Welcome changing requirements, even late in development
    3. Working software is delivered frequently (weeks rather than months)
    4. Close, daily cooperation between business people and developers
    5. Projects are built around motivated individuals, who should be trusted
    6. Face-to-face conversation is the best form of communication (co-location)
    7. Working software is the principal measure of progress
    8. Sustainable development, able to maintain a constant pace
    9. Continuous attention to technical excellence and good design
    10. Simplicity—the art of maximizing the amount of work not done—is essential
    11. Self-organizing teams
    12. Regular adaptation to changing circumstances

    Best regards,


    Eli De Friend

    BTW, I’m not suggesting that you can’t or shouldn’t use LSP in an Agile project. Far from it. In fact, the more people using LSP, the merrier. My concern is related to branding and quality.

    How can an honest client with a certain budget ensure that his or her funds achieve the intended objectives, if there is no guarantee on what is being acquired?

    If a stereotype North American buys a coffee in Italy the disappointment will be as huge as the other way round. A couple of years ago, I was living in Java and was expecting to be drinking the best coffee of my life. In fact, most Indonesians who drink coffee prefer a very diluted cup of Nescafé.

    In a similar way, if you hear that LSP can help your organisation develop the foundations for a sustainable strategy that stands a good chance of being implemented and being successful, you are going to feel a little confused (and perhaps even cheated) if your team are asked to build a tower, a duck, a monster that goes from identical to different and a couple of modified go-karts in a two-hour session at which point the facilitator submits his or her invoice.



    I take your comments on board.

    I see a great deal of synergy between the areas of coaching and LSP. The 4 principles from one of your links (and which I believe are part of the open source guide) have, for me, a direct correlation to some coaching models. As such I see it as having great potential for helping individuals and teams, in an agile environment, grow and change.

    As far as quality goes, I have a few remarks. Firstly, we have the same issue in the ‘agile’ world where novices are prone to the Dunning Kruger effect and give themselves lofty titles that don’t correlate to ability.

    Secondly we have our own certification bodies and frankly I’ve seen many poor practitioners with certification and many good ones without. Paying someone for a badge doesn’t qualify one as an expert. I’ve worked in a few organisations where I’ve had to repair the damage from previous certified ‘experts’.

    I think quality lies with the individual, the quest for knowledge and improvement and having high standards.

    For the conference, the aim is to introduce people to a potentially great tool that can help them work with clients.
    From that if they seek proper education and development in the practice I can only suggest it’s s bonus to both sectors. The snake oil salesmen will always exist, and it is only by sharing and encouraging the right principles in sessions such as that which I’m seeking that we can spread the right message.

    Ultimately, those who see a session and then go out and try it may make a few mistakes, may not get it entirely right but I believe that those mistakes will only encourage them to learn more and apply the principles better.

    Bruce Scharlau


    I can help you out. I’m a trained LSP facilitator, who uses this and other games with my students for teaching software development, and also in my clients in my consulting work. While I’ve not worked as a coach of a team, I am familiar with what they do from conversations and collaborating with them at agile coach camps and the ALE conference series. You’ll find more details on my presentations page.

    Get in touch directly if you want to discuss this further.


    Bruce Scharlau


    if you want more direct connection with agile and LSP then these people are trained in both, and are people I know in the agile community.

    Olaf Lewitz
    Steven Holyer
    Jens Hoffmann Jens is also half of the StrategicPlay team in Hamburg.
    All of them can do what you need and work in the agile field on a daily basis and also speak and run workshops to software developers and coaches at conferences.

    Eli De Friend

    Hi Bruce,
    While Jens has been closely attached to the LEGO SERIOUS PLAY community for about ten years now and both he and Katrin Elster, who is a co-organiser of Play4Agile, are certified LSP facilitators, there is no guarantee that everything that Jens and Katrin introduce to the Agile community under the brand name Strategic Play is necessarily LEGO SERIOUS PLAY. That’s the beauty of Open Source. StrategicPlay is based on the Open Source LSP, but then Jens can develop StrategicPlay in whatever way he wants. In any case, both Jens and Katrin would be qualified to talk about LSP. I don’t know about the extent to which they are qualified to talk about Agile. If you read Olaf Levitz’ web site, he talks about offering a session on Strategic Play at XP2010 and developing a Vision for Play4Agile using LEGO. He doesn’t claim to offer SERIOUS PLAY, nor does he claim to be an expert on it.

    So, while James rightly argues that you don’t have to be qualified to be an expert and that being qualified doesn’t make you an expert (and I fully agree with him on this), if you are looking for someone to talk at a conference, you are more likely to be interested in someone who has demonstrated credibility in the domain. As the quality management of LSP currently rests in the hands of LSP Association of Master Trainers, who can be reached through the seriousplaypro web site. I can’t speak for quality in the Agile domain and this web site is not necessarily the place to have that debate.

    Bruce Scharlau


    James asked for recommendations. I offered some recommendations of people I know, who are both trained LSP facilitators, and agile practitioners. I leave it up to James to determine if the people are a fit for his purposes. As he’s not said what the event is ands what precisely he’s looking for, then I trust that he can ask these people for more information.


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