2023 Mini XP Days Programme

When can I see which session?

8h30: Doors

9h00: Plenary Session


Does what you do matter?  
Geert Van Aken & Bastiaan De Brock

10h15-10h45: Break

10h45 – 12h15

12h15-13h15: Lunch

13h15-13h30: Plenary Session

13h30 – 14h30

A retrospective’s anti-patterns retrospective  
Frederik Vannieuwenhuyse & Philippe Vandessel

14h30-15h00: Break

15h00 – 16h30

16h30 – 17h30
Closing Plenary Session
and Drinks!

Rejoining after the last edition?

Want to know when the session was at the last conference in September? Here is the time schedule board that you will most definitely remember

Session descriptions

Here you can find the full description of the sessions. They contain a subtile, elevator pitch, goal and a full description.

How to solve the mystery of better refinements?

How a lateral thinking game can improve refinements
Eddy Bruin & Jordann Gross
Get ready for a game that only takes you 10 minutes to get your team ready to refine like a detective solving the most complex crime.
Goal of the session: Become better at refinements while having fun
Refining can be very helpful in determining what a new feature is about. So it’s an event to uncover the unknown, the question what’s meant by certain desires of how a system works. How do you suppport your team to be open-minded and unbiased when refining? Are your teams just racing through the refinement just to discover to have loads of questions while implementing them? Or even worse; resulting in quite some bugs? Get ready for a game that only takes you 10 minutes to get your team ready to refine like a detective solving the most complex crimes. Black stories are dark riddles to be explored and solved. The players ask the game master questions to unravel what happened in this riddle. This little card game is a great tool to create a collaborative mind to lateral thinking. A skill to let you explore requirements and user stories. It’s a perfect opener to host a refinement session of any sort. In this session Jordann and Eddy will guide you to facilitate this game and get the best out of your team. Session takeaways • Know how to activate a team for a refinement session/requirement review

• Understand what lateral thinking is

• Tricks to improve refinements

• A 10 minute game that impacts your refinements

Does what you do Matter?

Take 5 steps back so you can take a big jump forward (together)
Geert Van Aken & Bastiaan De Brock
Have you ever experienced yourself working diligently, filled with passion, to deliver something when suddenly, like a bolt from the blue, you were overcome by a sparkle of doubt? Am I doing the right thing? Are we, as team or as organization, doing the right thing? How do we know what matters? Should we be doing this? And should we be doing it right now?
Goal of the session: Discover what is important for your product in your situation for your clients.
Attend our session when you are intrigued by the questions above! The goal is to send you home with a seed planted in your head on how to discover what is important for your product in your situation for your clients.

Join as individual or as group of the same team or organization to reflect on some questions that will bring clarity on your mission and strategy. It will not be a theoretical session and we hope that our practical approach will also help you to: Get cleaning up your technical debt prioritized above yet another feature. Engage the people in your team or organization even more. Build even better products. Get an overview of all that’s needed to succeed. … We strongly advise you to select a ‘scope’ upfront to which you will apply the content immediately and bring the ‘mission statement’ of that scope with you (if it exists). The scope can be either product, team, tribe, department or your organization as a whole.

Participatory budgeting and Lean Portfolio Management

Participatory budgeting and Lean Portfolio Management
Use the wisdom of the crowd to decide where the money goes.
Chris Verlinden
Experience how you can use the wisdom of the crowd to prioritize your portfolio of initiatives and features and decide on the funding needed. Each participant at the table receives an equal part of the total budget and can decide to fund a feature, alone or in collaboration with others. The result from the different tables are pooled and at the end it will become clear which initiatives stakeholders want to fund entirely, partially, or not at all.
Goal of the session: Participants will experience a lean and agile alternative to traditional budgeting, where many people work together to decide how money available is best spent.
This is a session where a laptop is advised Laptop
Let us face it: traditional finance and budgeting processes are not exactly best mates with lean and agile. Budget control is part of Command and Control: make sure that no money is spent without approval up front. But companies start to realize that the yearly budget cycle introduces a long waiting time and is deadly for your time to market. In this workshop, you will experience how collaborative, participatory budgeting can engage many stakeholders, capture the vision and priorities of a large group and translate them into actionable budgets.

Let the drawing beast out!

Let the drawing beast out!
How drawn images boost your meeting
Dimitri Bauwens
Have you seen your peers doze off after one too many? Powerpoint slides that is! Have you gotten in another endless discussion where people keep thinking that more words will clear out the problem? It turns out that the phrase “a picture says more than a thousand words” also holds true in meetings, in collaboration sessions, or anywhere else on the workfloor. Let’s explore the possibilities you can have with just a few lines and basic forms and see how it can spice up (or clear out) your meeting!
In this session we will explore the entertaining trait of drawing lines and how they can produce a very powerful image for people to find a common understanding. When filled with a little speck of color, or a shade, everything becomes more clear. We start from an existing flipchart and I’ll explain and show how all the components are drawn, how the color is applied. As a bonus (and when there is time left) We’ll learn some basic shapes that everybody needs to have in their toolbelt.

Lunch and Plenary Session

A retrospective’s anti-patterns retrospective

A retrospective’s anti-patterns retrospective
A facilitated retrospective about anti-patterns in retrospectives
Frederik Vannieuwenhuyse & Philippe Vandessel
Retrospectives are pretty standard in agile teams, perhaps so typical that the regular retrospectives are not yielding the value expected and the goals of retrospectives initially presumed. What’s happening with retrospectives? What are common anti-patterns? Join our session to inspect your retrospectives, specifically to share and learn about anti-patterns. As a beginner, you can learn from the group. As a more experienced agilist, you can share your experiences and what you have done in the past. Having experience with retrospectives, either as a participant or facilitator, is highly preferable.
Goal of the session: To learn and share about common anti-patterns in retrospectives and how to deal with these.
Are retrospectives vehicles for continuous improvement? Do you get the value out of retrospectives? We will facilitate a retrospective about retrospectives. Many teams are doing retrospectives. How productive are these? The session aims to discuss anti-patterns and understand how to prevent and deal with these. It’s more than a couple of techniques or formats to facilitate or entertain a retrospective. Let’s get to the essence of what retrospectives are about. An example anti-pattern is the “Whack-a-mole” pattern, in which a team discusses and tries to improve everything that’s happening in a sprint, resulting in little or no improvements in the end. The improvement issues keep on popping up, and the more you try to improve little things, the more minor problems appear, without any structural improvements made in the end. You participate by sharing your experiences, deep-dive in causes and exploring possible experiments to improve. We will guide the session, give examples of anti-patterns and add our insights. The primary purpose is to create a space where you can learn from your peers.

Unbelievable! Figuring out how others think

Unbelievable! Figuring out how others think
A game to explore your team’s hidden beliefs and assumptions
Robert van Lieshout
Why did my team mate get upset? Was it something I said? In this experimental card game you will explore each other’s hidden beliefs and assumptions. In doing so, you’ll gain a better understanding of each other – and of yourself!
Goal of the session: Participants will learn a way to explore hidden beliefs and assumptions that they and other team members hold.
Why did my team mate get upset? Was it something I said? We are all unique and diverse individuals, yet increasingly we need to work together in teams.

The great thing about all this diversity is that we can see things from different perspectives.

But sometimes the diversity also means we have a hard time understanding each other. In this experimental card game you will explore each other’s hidden beliefs and assumptions. In doing so, you’ll gain a better understanding of each other – and of yourself!

Let’s practice “Big Picture” EventStorming

Let’s practice “Big Picture” EventStorming
EventStorming with the stars
Cédric Pontet
An infinite modeling surface, a bunch of markers, and loads of colored stickies. Here is EventStorming, a workshop format that allows a group of people to model a complex business domain or a whole business line in just a few hours, with a massive amount of learning and alignment.
Goal of the session: After this session, you will have experienced EventStorming, understood the power of this tool in terms of discovery and alignment, understood what is needed to run an EventStorming session in terms of preparation and materials.
Have you ever had to model a complex business process? Have you ever experienced the pain of organizing meetings after meetings, with many people, without reaching a consensus on what the process should look like, or what are the main pain points? If your answer is yes, then EventStorming is for you! EventStorming is a workshop technique that allows a group of participants to model complex processes or systems using only markers, stickies, and a lot of brain juice. Having learned from the best while participating in the first EventStorming summit in 2018, and having used it myself in many different situations with customers in very different fields, I have made it my personal mission to make the most people aware of the power of this technique and its versatility. In this session, I will facilitate a “Big Picture” EventStorming on a domain that everyone should be familiar with (the subtitle may give you a hint). Our collective goal will be to model this domain in just a few iterations, using incremental notation, and storytelling to validate our assumptions. Let’s make Alberto Brandolini (inventor of EventStorming) proud, by designing the best process we can come up with as a group. Then we will debrief the activity and I will explain different variations of EventStorming (big picture, process modeling, software design, retrospective, as-is vs to-be, …), and also provide tips to get better at facilitating a session. Learn more about Event Storming

Dreaming of a fully aligned multi-team environment?

Dreaming of a fully aligned multi-team environment?
Simulation game of a 4-step approach to align dreams, priorities, scope & delivery forecast
Stefan Vanlokeren & Jurgen Maus
Ever experienced an energized, motivating big room planning?

In this session we will dream of building a new magic world, we will decide together how it will look like and we will identify and plan the realization of the most valuable items. Hope to see you as member of one of our magiciens teams.

You will experience the elements that are needed to engage, motivate people and create a learning organisation. 4 steps that really makes a difference. Per step we will reflect back to reality.
Goal of the session: Experience the difference between planning team dependencies and getting motivated, engaged, growing teams that are working towards the same goals and the same time also discussed the most important dependencies.
The story begins with teams chasing their own, separate goals, ignoring each others’ talents & forgetting to make their customers happy.

Join our experience of writing the next chapter. You will be drowned, as a member of one of the teams, in a new world of inspiring collaboration via an interactive & fun simulation boardgame. Feel how experimenting with a 4-step alignment moment on “magic features”, “priorities”, “scope” & “delivery forecast” can lead to pursuing a common dream … and what about the chapter thereafter ?

At the end of every step, we’ll return back to reality for a while.

You will experience the elements that are needed to engage, motivate people and create a learning organisation. 4 steps that really makes a difference. Required Experience: Working in a world full of misalignments, misunderstandings & flawed input is a plus.


Chris Verlinden

Website: http://www.adjugo.com

Frederik Vannieuwenhuyse

Website: http://www.ilean.be

I work as a Scrum Master, Agile Coach, facilitator, and educator.

I work at iLean: http://www.ilean.be.

If you want to know more about my background, studies, certifications, experiences, interests … connect with me on http://linkedin.com/in/frederikvannieuwenhuyse/ and my professional activities, check https://value-first.be/.

Happy to listen to you and reflect! How can I help you today?

Frederik is also XP Days Benelux co-organizer, Agile Consortium Belgium board member, and event organizer at the Agile Belgium meetup.

Philippe Vandessel

Philippe Vandessel

Website: http://www.ilean.be

In 2015 I participated in a Scrum team. This way of working was such a revelation and in the same time also a coming home. Finally all the pieces of the puzzle fell together. From that point on scrum and anything agile was the only way forward for me.

Since that time, I have helped several teams in adopting agility step by step by facilitating a culture founded on collaboration, trust and continuous improvement.

Robert van Lieshout

Website: https://www.pragmaticall.nl

Robert is a compassionate agilist, coach and facilitator, with a love for happy people and high standards. He combines excellent theoretical knowledge with a pragmatic approach and deep respect for the people he works with. He has trained hundreds of people in Scrum and related practices.

A good way to get Robert started is to offer him a beer or a board game.

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Cédric Pontet

Website: https://www.agilepartner.net/

Twitter: @cpontet

Cédric is a seasoned software expert and Agile/Lean coach. He started his software engineering career in 2001 and since 2005, has been happily employed at Agile Partner, where he has worked with a large variety of customers both in public and private sectors.
He is now helping teams on matters such as software architecture, cloud computing, Agile, Lean, and DevOps. Defining himself as curious and pragmatic, Cédric is proud to be part of different communities (Agile, Domain-Driven Design, EventStorming, Sketchnoting) and enjoys mixing these influences to bring people together.
Cédric is a speaker at conferences such as Build Stuff, Voxxed Days, KanDDDinsky, Agile Grenoble and FlowCon. He is also the co-founder of #play14, a worldwide gathering of like-minded people who believe that play is the best way to learn, share and be creative.

Jordann Gross

Website: Https://www.theseriousgamers.com

For many years Jordann & Eddy have been using serious games and learning metaphors in their coaching. They have facilitated and created games that advocate agile to move teams forward.

Eddy Bruin

Website: Https://www.theseriousgamers.com

Twitter: @eddybruin

For many years Eddy & Jordann have been using serious games and learning metaphors in their coaching. They have facilitated and created games that advocate agile to move teams forward.

Dimitri Bauwens

Website: https://www.linkedin.com/in/dimitri-bauwens/

Twitter: @dimitribauwens

For nearly a decade in the world of Scrum and agility. First as a developer, then as a Scrummaster/Team Coach
I help teams and individuals gain more agility. Not through rigorous processes, but by learning what works for individuals and teams.
Experienced in (graphic) facilitation, Scrum, Kanban, Liberating structures, impact mapping, storymapping, gamestorming and many more!
Love to learn more about graphic facilitation, people, how to achieve flow.

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Jurgen Maus

I had the luck to start my professional life in a fantastic team. A team full of energy, realizing our projects, looking for the better way and just having fun.
Over the years that feeling disappeared…
I was lucky to get in touch with some fantastic people that just opened my eyes. A moment that changed my life.
I’m passionate to change the world… I want everyone to get the experience to work in a fantastic team. To feel the motivation, to feel the energy, to feel having a purpose. I coach, I teach, I learn and above all I share all the insights I gather that lead to a positive environment.

Stefan Vanlokeren

I passionately like to explore how collaboration between different people could make a positive impact.

Bastiaan De Brock

I am born in Ghent, lived for 8 years in Dendermonde and recently moved to Doorslaar. You will hear in my accent that I’m from Ghent, my birthplace and a city I’m very fond of.
Today I live in Doorslaar, a small town North of Lokeren. I am a father of 2 kids, a girl of 5 and a boy of 3. I started working about 18 years ago as a pastry chef/chocolatier. After 2 years I started working as a team-lead in a callcenter for a telco company called BASE. 1 year later, I switched to become a salesperson at the competition, Proximus.

In a short time I discovered that back then Proximus was a very rigid company with a strict hierachy and a vast structure. Since I still knew a couple people at BASE, I knew there was a job opening to become a shop manager for a BASE shop in Ghent. A job I did for about 9 years. During this time I discovered that coaching people to guide them in becoming even better versions of themselves was something I wanted to do more. So, 2 years after the takeover from BASE by Telenet I applied (3 years ago) for the role of Scrum Master and have never regreted my choice. My biggest motivation in life is to learn, gain knowledge and to experiment with these learnings in real life.

Geert Van Aken

“It takes more than a delighted customer to classify a project as successful. The journey to achieve that delightment should be as wonderful as well.”

An agile mindset and an environment in which it is safe to think for yourself and to experiment are both necessary to let people fully connect with their work. As an Agile Coach or Scrum Master, I make it my goal to create those conditions for my teams and the companies I work for.

I strongly believe that people are able to organize themselves in ways beyond their imagination and that respectfully tapping into the collective wisdom of the group is one of the most beautiful things that can happen during a collaboration.

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