This course deals with the challenges of reaching a common understanding of requirements, specifications and expectations where there is a high content of complex work. It addresses the different patterns and workflows available and the context in which they are deployed. All Team members and stakeholders need an understanding of this process.

This ALL Specifications course takes students through the basics of producing useful specifications. This includes using advanced narrative techniques to achieve common understanding and a high recall factor of facts. A balance between structure and flexibility has to be constantly upheld. The course also gives a number of different workflows that can be deployed to secure a solid common understanding. Read a PDF description of the course here…

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Learning objectives

Understanding the foundational challenge of reaching a common understanding of specifications when working in the complex domain.


Understanding how Agile Lean specifications rely on reaching a common understanding through dialogue, not through detailed contracts. Have applicable knowledge of the various cognitive and psychological constraints that govern this process.

The Toolbox

Apprehending a collection of patterns, tools, practices, and templates that can facilitate this process. Understand the applicability of each.

Real Life

Understanding how different visualization techniques can strengthen the cognitive and communicative process, and how such artifacts can keep the common understanding fixed on the same facts.


Basic specification theory – How can the wishes and requirements of stakeholders be transmitted to team members who will do the work?

    • The case for using narratives for specification. User Stories and their practical use. Start with the “why”.
    • Reaching a common understanding, the importance of verbal communication in this process.
    • Adding acceptance criteria, and detailed scenarios.
    • Relevant metadata – Specifications carry extra information to help determine prioritization and course of action. Discussion of what is relevant.
    • A tactile exercise to try specifying a delivery.

Workflows – Specifications need to be thoroughly formulated, refined, and reviewed from different perspectives. 

    • A number of model workflows are presented and discussed to give students a selection to choose from.

Decomposition of specifications – Specifications have to be broken down into manageable sizes so that implementation can be reasonably understood and estimated.

    • The Story Map - seen as the backbone of understanding and aggregation of metrics.
    • Different patterns for decomposition.
    • Minimal user value quality (marketable feature).

Estimation at large – Predictability is always a desired quality. Different methods for estimation of different things.

    • Estimation Poker, Magic Estimation, Buy a feature, keeping the references for estimation realistic.
    • Uncertainty, impact estimation, cost of delay.
    • Complexity estimation, special specifications for experiments and investigations.
    • Kano analysis, desirability of qualities.

Visualize and understand – Different ways to illustrate a solution and focus on common understanding.

    • Backlog in varying detail, Story map in detail. Storyboarding. Impact mapping.
    • Building a high-level roadmap to focus everybody.
    • State event patterns, and ways to illustrate.
    • Workflow for preparing specifications for action.

“Now, what is simplicity? Simplicity is the shortest path to a solution.” – Ward Cunningham

Prices and Conditions for Courses

  • Each public Agile Lean Leadership one-day course is offered at an Early-Bird price of EUR 680, NOK/SEK 7,100, or DKK 5,100 when registering more than a month before the course date, after that the prices are EUR 760, NOK/SEK 7,900 or DKK 5,700.
  • Each public Agile Lean Leadership two-day Course (ALLSM or ALLPO) is offered at an Early-Bird price of EUR 1,300, NOK/SEK  14,300, or DKK 9,700 when registering more than a month before the course date, after that the price is EUR 1,460, NOK/SEK 15,900 or DKK 10,800.
  • All Prices are excl. VAT.
  • Courses are delivered in Danish in Denmark and Norwegian in Norway unless there are participants that require English, then we will switch to English, which is the default language in all other territories.
  • Courses include meals, course materials, a certificate of participation, access to online resources, a free online Retrospective 2-3 weeks after the course and free participation in follow-up events for two years.
  • Participants can choose to sit an extra examination after each course. This consists of handing in a written assignment for review and assessment by the instructor and an independent instructor. The students will receive comments and a passed/failed note, grades are not given. The examination costs EUR 180, NOK/SEK 1.900 or DKK 1,350.
  • Registration is via email at and invoices are sent out from the organization arranging the training course. Payment has to be received before the start of the course.
  • Cancellation policy: Registration can be canceled up until one month before the start of the course without any fees. Cancellation between one month and two weeks before the course starts is charged with 50% of the course fee. Cancellation within the last two weeks before the course starts will be charged fully. Transfer to a later course can be negotiated, in case unforeseen circumstances appear.
  • For free events, we kindly ask participants to register via email at Registration can be canceled up to 24 hours before the event FOC. After that, a no-show fee of EUR 60, NOK/SEK 650 or DKK 450 will be invoiced.
  • The courses are also offered as internal, on-site courses for organizations and companies. A minimum of 10 participants are normally required. If you are interested, please contact us for further information, via email here… or find the right contact person here…

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