Creating an Immersive Agile Training Space

I’ve been hinting about a new venture on Twitter, and it’s time to explain what’s going on.New Space

I’m in the process of opening a new office. Or rather, my company, Quality Tree Software, Inc. is opening a new space in our current building in Pleasanton, CA.

It’s 1200 square feet of open-layout-Agile-goodness. When it’s done, it will be outfitted in the spirit of the best Agile organizations I’ve seen. It will be one big wide open workspace with lots of natural light. We’ll fill it with modular furniture that will be able to accommodate a variety of uses.

FloorplanThe space is still under construction. So you’ll have to use your imagination to envision the finished space. But trust me. It will be cool. It will look like a well-appointed team room. There will be big whiteboards. There will be a big visible CI monitor. There will be a library. There will be a story wall. There will be big visible charts. There will be desks suitable for pairing. There will be comfy chairs. There will be index cards.

My intent is to create a training space that offers participants an immersive Agile experience. Just as I’ve recommended that people visit Pivotal Labs in San Francisco or Atomic Object in Grand Rapids or Menlo Innovations in Ann Arbor, I hope that others will be inspired to recommend that their friends and colleagues visit our new space to see what an Agile space feels like.

And because having this space means we have our very own dedicated venue, we’ll be able to offer beta-level, not-quite-ready-for-primetime classes at significantly reduced rates. And we’ll be able to experiment freely.

I’m already talking with other training providers about classes they might want to do in the space. Our intent is to host offerings from all sorts of folks. It’s kinda like having a performance venue showcasing awesome trainers and facilitators who are aligned with our values.

In that spirit, the vision is to create far more than “just” a great training space. I also hope that the space can become a kind of community hub. I want it to become the kind of place that people look forward to visiting just, well, because. Because it feels good to be there. Because it reminds them of what a living breathing team space feels like. So we plan to host community events like OSTATLI in the space. And I hope that the space will foster a community of practice for Agile trainers where we can share experiences and material, and collaborate to create better classes.

There’s still a lot more work to be done before we’re ready for visitors. We’re currently targeting an October opening. But construction delays could push that date back. I’ll post updates here, and pictures, as things progress.

In the meantime, I hope you’ll consider visiting us when the space is finished!


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11 Responses to Creating an Immersive Agile Training Space

  1. Drew McManus July 29, 2009 at 5:22 pm #

    Congrats! Can’t wait to visit! When’s the party?

  2. Rob Lambert July 30, 2009 at 12:53 am #


    The pictures and plans look great. I do truly believe that an awe inspiring place of work creates awe inspiring work and creativity.

    I look forward to hearing about how you progress with your meetings and trainings.

    Shame Pleasanton, CA is so far away from Winchester, UK.



  3. Pradeep Soundararajan July 30, 2009 at 1:43 am #

    I had a similar plan but you just didn’t have the plan. Credit goes to you for making it happen and I see this is your yet another cool contribution to the community of software professionals.

    If I happen to visit SFO, I’d sure want to visit this place. Great going. Also post the pictures once its built to completion.

  4. Hannu Kokko July 30, 2009 at 4:48 am #

    Looks very cool. And very good to see you invest in future. Some excellent teamspaces I have seen have fridge with drinks, decent coffeemaker, fuzzy pets, statues, nice posters…

    More pictures when it is ready, please.

  5. Lisamarie Babik July 30, 2009 at 4:48 am #

    This looks totally awesome, Elisabeth! Congratulations on bringing your plan to action!

  6. Some One July 30, 2009 at 8:31 pm #

    Inspiring for sure, even to just see the incomplete floor plan. A certain personal challenge lies in getting others to understand all of this. Certain Agile concepts are seemingly incongruous with the way some people think.

    My own thoughts aside, really does look great.

  7. Janet Gregory July 30, 2009 at 9:21 pm #

    Elisabeth, I’m glad you made a decision and are going ahead with it. I know you’ll use it well and I can’t wait to participate in one of your sessions.


  8. Jennifer Abe August 21, 2009 at 12:23 am #

    Congratulations on the new space Elisabeth! It sounds wonderful and I hope to be able to visit and participate in another one of your fabulous training sessions!

  9. R. Mullen January 12, 2010 at 11:57 pm #

    This is absolutely GORGEOUS, the idea is really beautiful and, thank goodness about the index cards!

  10. Dennis Britton April 2, 2010 at 5:31 pm #

    This place seems destined to be an amazing resource for the SF Bay Area agile and IT community. Thanks for having the vision and commitment for making it happen!

  11. Bruce May 19, 2010 at 5:35 pm #

    This looks totally awesome, Elisabeth! Congratulations on bringing your plan to action!