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INSPIRED, 2nd Edition by Marty Cagan

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CHAPTER 66Top Reasons for Loss of Velocity

As organizations grow, it's not unusual for things to slow down. They don't need to, and in the best organizations, they can accelerate. But if you are seeing a slowdown, these are the first things to look for.

  1. Technical debt. Often, the architecture does not facilitate or enable the rapid evolution of the product. This is not something that can be fixed overnight, but it needs to be attacked in an ongoing and concerted effort.
  2. Lack of strong product managers. The lack of a strong and capable product manager is typically a major reason for slow product. The impact of a weak product manager shows up in many ways, but it shows up very visibly as a team of mercenaries rather than missionaries. The product manager has not inspired or evangelized to the team, or the team has lost confidence in their product manager.
  3. Lack of delivery management. The most important function of the delivery manager is to remove impediments, and the list of impediments grows non‐linearly as the technology organization grows. Most impediments won't go away quickly without someone actively chasing them down.
  4. Infrequent release cycles. Most teams with slow velocity have release vehicles that are too infrequent. Your team should release no less frequently than every two weeks (very good teams release multiple times per day). Correcting this typically means getting ...

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