Information Technology Dark Side

Struggles of a Self-Taught Coder

Information Technology Dark Side header image 3

User Stories for Business People

Register Now

User Stories

User stories are in integral part of the agile development workflow because they are a lightweight and versatile way of cataloging, prioritizing, and facilitating the development of new features in a software development project.
User stories aren’t like traditional requirements documents or use cases. User stories act as a reminder to have a conversation with your development time, not as a comprehensive description of every detail related to a feature. This difference sometimes makes it hard for business people who are new to agile development to struggle to write user stories that are just good enough to start a conversation with a development team.

What You’ll Learn
Upon completion of the workshop, you will understand the following:

  • What is a user story?
  • Where do user stories fit in the agile development workflow?
  • What makes a good user story?
  • How to write user acceptance tests
  • How to plan an iteration

Practice, Practice, Practice
This isn’t a class – it’s a workshop. Most of your time will be spent practicing writing real user stories and acceptance tests using PivotalTracker. Sure, there will be some lecture, but the real value comes from the hands-on experience you will gain writing and critiquing user stories in guided exercises.

Who Should Attend?
This class is primarily focused on the business members of an agile team, ie product owners, subject matter experts, business analysts, stakeholders, etc. Development team members who are new to agile will also find value in this workshop.

What Should I Bring?
This workshop uses PivotalTracker to practice writing, prioritizing, and managing stories, but what you learn will transfer to other similar tools, even 3×5 cards. As a result, You will need a laptop or tablet computer that can access the internet wirelessly.

About the Teacher
Dave Christiansen has been writing and testing software nearly all his life. Starting with BASIC on the TI-99/4A in the 1980’s and continuing through college and his professional career, Dave has never stopped learning about software development. As a professional, Dave has developed software in myriad industries that has been to:

  • Design and manufacture helicopter parts
  • Determine a citizen’s eligibility for public assistance
  • Provision and manage mobile devices
  • Automate the underwriting of insurance
  • Investigate and track infectious disease outbreaks
  • Manage cub scout and boy scout troops
  • Create value-add services with twitter
  • Help aspiring authors learn more about writing

Dave has also worked as a project manager in the IT department of Liberty Mutual Agency Markets. After earning his Project Management Professional (PMP) certification from the Project Management Institute (PMI) and attempting to use the waterfall approach to manage software projects he became disillusioned with phase-based development approaches and began experimenting with agile software development instead. As a result, Dave was one of the first project managers to run a successful agile project from start to production in Agency Markets. Not long after, Dave relinquished his PMP certification and began coaching others on making the transition from traditional project management approaches to agile.

Most recently, Dave helped a niche midwestern insurance company successfully transition from waterfall project management to agile in a ten month period.

Dave is also the author of and the owner and developer of His articles and essays have been published in a number of print and online publications, including ComputerWorld, CIO, and Better Software.

Register Now

DeveloperTown is not affiliated with PivotalLabs or PivotalTracker. We just love PivotalTracker, that’s all.

No Comments

0 responses so far ↓

  • There are no comments yet...Kick things off by filling out the form below.

Leave a Comment