I have attended this conference every year since Agile2007 minus Agile2020 but no one could attend that year!  Yet, each time I am surprised by what I experience. Each year, I write a reflection and appreciation post following the event.  This time will be no different!

First, the things I expect and yet always impress me each year:

  • Volunteers:  The smiles, the help, the energy…all of it.  I remember being purple shirt once and what this team continues to deliver year after year is nothing short of amazing. Purple shirts rock!
  • The Agile Alliance, Program Team, and Track Chairs and Organizers – I tip my hat to each one of you.  I know how much work leads up to and during this week.  The care, passion, and focus on experiments came through loud and clear.  Mad respect!

This year my only official responsibility was to speak on Wednesday afternoon with Diana Larsen.  So I really spent my time soaking up all of the connections and learning I could.  At the risk of leaving something out, here are just a few of my highlights (in no particular order):

  • The conference chair Emma Armstrong – I’m so glad you choose to return to finish what was taken in 2020.  I heart you!
  • Taking the C.L.E.A.R pledge (curious, listening, empathetic, action-oriented and reflective to the needs of the most vulnerable). and when I act it will be informed by the five Ds (distract, delegate, document, delay, direct).  I hope I lived up to this pledge and created safe places for others.
  • This was the first in person, multiple hour session that Diana and I have co-trained together.  As with this whole collaboration, it was smooth and enjoyable.  Bonus, I got to mess with Bob Galen in the next room (you know I have to have the loudest room)
  • Our book, Lead without Blame, sold out in the bookstore on Monday!!!
  • Experiencing the difference that Agile in Color has brought to this conference.  Beyond grateful!!!
  • Marsha Acker’s session made me think “I really need to level up”.  She shared various communication patterns in a non-judgmental way while giving people tools to break the cycles.  I am looking forward to reading her latest book.
  • Tobey taught me to put my thumb between the mic and my mouth.  GAME CHANGER PEOPLE!
  • Thoughtful gifts from my wonderful friend Christina
  • Many people think they can do handstands until they try it.
  • Audacious Salon track…when I helped create this track, the goal was to create the space where deeper conversations could happen, where speakers were not back-up trainers at a table but fully engaged, where exploration into tough conversations could happen.  I’ve watched this track evolve and as I witnessed a debate this year, I felt my breath release as I saw the discussion unfold in front of me.  Thank you Melissa & Zach (and all the participants of that track)
  • Running back and forth to two different dance areas with Marie 🙂
  • Being twirled by Pradeep (still so proud I didn’t fall down with how fast we were going…does anyone have a video of this?!?!)
  • I got to spend some time appreciating individuals that have had a significant impact on me.  To be able to say thank you in person (often with tears in my eyes) to those that I feel I’m standing on their shoulders.
  • The speaker I missed that so many mentioned as a highlight session…Nicole Smith and Christopher Veal.  Now I know Nicole, so I’m not surprised in the least bit but I learned I should never miss one of her sessions!  And I was lucky to cross paths with Christopher at the conference.  Now just to find more ways to get their voices heard (including selfishly heard by me)!
  • And a lazy river that was anything but lazy…lol

And all of this was possible because of people.  I think I’ve mentioned that when you have gone to these conferences for a while, these can feel like reunions. And yes, with each reconnection I am a better person.  Sometimes in giggling fits in a hallway to deep discussions over pain and struggles we are facing.  And yet there is also new bonds forming each day.  Sometimes over karaoke singing/dancing and sometimes by luck of who I happen to sit by.  This community helps me in ways that I’ll never quite be able to articulate fully.  I am forever grateful for this week of learning and laughter.

Agile2023 was worth every single minute.  I’m already counting down to Agile2024.

Do you have any Agile2023 thoughts to share?






Tricia Broderick

Tricia Broderick

Tricia Broderick is a leadership and organizational advisor. Her transformational leadership at all levels of an organization, ignites growth of leaders and high performing teams to deliver quality outcomes. Tricia has more than twenty years of experience in the software development industry. She is a highly-rated trainer, coach, facilitator and motivational keynote speaker. Beyond her extensive knowledge and skills, her biggest offering is inspiring people to believe anything is possible.

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