This morning I woke to the sad news that Steve Bockman passed away. Steve was a friend, co-worker, creator, problem solver, agilist, and one of my heroes. Steve worked at Agile Learning Labs from 2009 – 2012. In his Hawaiian shirts, his presence was always fun, friendly, and engaging.
He was a great salesperson because he was an agilist first. One of his passions was Theory Of Constraints. He was expert at using it to analyze any situation where improvement was needed, and find the bottleneck – the one key area to focus on. When the team would get stuck in analysis paralysis, he would guide us toward action by finding an experiment so we could ‘Try it!’ He contributed extensively to the work that we did to create our unusual compensation model. He had a gift for designing training games that allowed people to have fun, while learning complex concepts. His creations include:
- The Team Estimation Game
- Flying Through Bottlenecks
- The Knowledge Transfer Bottleneck
- The Dependency Game
- The TDD And Pair Programming Game
- From Just In Case to Just In Time And Beyond
- The Sprint Planning Game
He wrote two books: Predictability and Practical Estimation: A Pocket Guide to Making Dependable Project Schedules. His Team Estimation Game appears in The Elements Of Scrum, a book that he supported Hillary Johnson and I in writing.
Community was important to Steve. He founded the North Bay Agile Meetup group, was extensively involved in the Bay Agile Leadership Network and the Agile Open California conference.
Betty and I are grateful to have known and worked with Steve. Our condolences to all who are missing him today.
Steve’s Old Agile Learning Labs Bio
Steve Bockman is a certified ScrumMaster, agile coach and innovator who began his career as a software developer in 1977. Steve is the founder of North Bay Agile, and the creator of an intuitive estimation technique that many find easier and faster than planning poker. Steve’s conference presentations include: Agile2007, Agile2008, as well as Agile Open California 2007, 2008 and 2009. He has presented for professional organizations including: North Bay Agile, BayXP, Silicon Valley Agile, Bay Area Agile Project Leadership Network, and the Bay Area Association of Database Developers. Steve continually strives to communicate the essence of agile development to novices and help advanced practitioners grow their skills.
Steve And The Agile Learning Labs Team
The Announcement From His Family
With the heaviest of hearts, my sister, Erin, and I would like to let our friends and family know that after a years long, hard battle with advanced Parkinson’s our dear, sweet father, Steve, passed peacefully at 11:25 yesterday morning, surrounded by me, my sister, our step sister Monica, and my husband Eddy . He was surrounded by love until the very end. It was very peaceful and bittersweet. Yesterday was our sweet stepmom’s (Diana) birthday, she passed away in June 2016. It was as if she came to get him; and now they are dancing and laughing among the clouds… together again. After witnessing him suffer for so long we feel relief along with the sadness. He was surrounded by love. He is no longer in pain. For that we are very grateful.
There will be a celebration of life after our family has had time to grieve. We are hoping to celebrate Dad’s life on his birthday this year; September 16, 2023.