Design inception agenda

As mentioned earlier, a good agenda has a narrative, a logical flow through which we run activities that give us insight to ultimately fulfil the goals of the inception:

1 - UNDERSTAND THE PROBLEM / OPPORTUNITY

We start with aligning on what the problem, vision and goals are:

  • Why are we doing this?

  • Where do we want to be?

2 - UNDERSTAND CONTEXT AND DOMAIN

We then analyse the current and future states covering people, process and technology:

  • Where are we now and where do we want to be?

  • What are we dealing with?

3- IDENTIFY AND DEFINE SOLUTION OPTIONS

We then head into top level to-be solution design: We define scope (usually feature / epic-level overall and story-level for the immediate next sprints) and functional / technical solution design. We agree how to prioritise, identify risks and dependencies, and define ways of working:

  • What are potential solution options?

  • What will the solution look like?

4 - IDENTIFY DELIVERY APPROACH AND PLAN DELIVERY

Finally, we make a recommendation (continue, pivot or stop).

When we continue, we define a delivery approach, team-shape, plan/roadmap and ultimately an estimate. This results in a statement of work and actionable immediate next steps:

  • How do we get there?

  • How do we deliver?

Most inceptions will follow this high level agenda: this is all that’s needed to confirm desirability, viability and feasibility of the initiative.