I am the Chief Technology Officer at Rally Software. I am not Paul Hawken, or Peter Senge, or Richard Branson. But I have studied these social innovators and am diligently working to apply these concepts in a 450+ person business, public SaaS company that I founded in 2002. In my CTO role, I run a team that manages our innovation portfolio of new products and services, including our Rally For Impact strategic CSR efforts. This team also leads Rally’s corporate steering process that brings 100+ Rallyers and customers together every quarter to retrospect and work openly on our most pressing improvements. At Rally we are moving beyond product teams to Agile portfolio management and helping customers achieve organization-wide business agility.
We are a “how” company and I am a “how” innovator, focusing on where the rubber meets the road. I am an expert in helping companies adopt Agile and Lean methodologies, loosely defined as methods for delivering small increments in quick cycles to speed feedback and innovation. I founded Rally to help move the industry from a slow, wasteful, and burdensome product model to a fast, sustainable, high-impacting service model. I hope this leads to the kinds of changes that Paul Hawken and the Lovins described in Natural Capitalism. The goal is to break the take-make-waste cycle and move society toward a regenerative service model – a model where work creates joy, diversity, social justice, and clean ecosystem services.
In addition to trying to change the technology industry, I integrate my work in capital markets with social impact. I am a founding board member with Entrepreneurs Foundation of Colorado, a member of the engineering entrepreneurship efforts at the University of Colorado, and a mentor at the Unreasonable Institute and Boulder TechStars. Salesforce.com and Marc Benioff’s 1/1/1 model led to Rally’s membership in EFCO, our certification as a B-Corp, and the creation of the Rally For Impact Foundation.
I live in Boulder, Colorado, with my wife, our son Gus, and a small collection of animals including horses, dogs, chickens, goats, burros, bees, and worms, who all work hard to make soil amendments and food in our permaculture gardens.
The Lean Systems Society (LSS) is holding its US conference on September 11th and 12th, here at Rally’s Boulder office. If you experiment with, design, or build complex systems using Agile and Lean, please attend. My experience with this group and conference has been fantastic in expanding my thinking and perspectives on Lean in complex spaces.
“Ticking away the moments that make up a dull day
Fritter and waste the hours in an offhand way
Kicking around on a piece of ground in your home town
Waiting for someone or something to show you the way”
-- From “Time,” on Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon
More than 1,000 developers across 72 events will join together on June 1-2 for National Day of Civic Hacking. Their mission? To use publicly-released data, and code to solve challenges relevant to our neighborhoods, our cities, our states and our country.
Here are 10 reasons why you should join:
As we prepare for RallyON, our annual user conference here in Boulder, I got to thinking about some parallels in my life as a purveyor of eggs. Our Rally staff is well familiar with the dozens of eggs I bring each week from our small farm, laid by my varied chicken population. They sit in cartons at the feet of my stuffed penguin muse, Bernard. Bernard nurtures and guards those eggs like any male penguin (March of the Penguins, anyone?).
Back in November, I got a hand-written note from one of our customers with a cool company logo sticker for my laptop. His note was an expression of gratitude to Rally and for my personal assistance with his agile journey. This heartfelt thanks put the cherry on top of a sucessful, productive year for both me individually and for Rally as a company. In that note, the author asked me to read the book The Radical Leap Re-energized, by Steve Farber.
Join us at Denver Startup Week, a series of events from October 22 to 26, showcasing Denver’s entrepreneurial community in tech, design, business, and social entrepreneurship. There are many opportunities to connect with Rally from formal speaking events to breakfast to hackathons to beer!
Not only did I have the gift of reading an advanced copy of Brad Feld’s latest book, Startup Communities, I also had the gift of getting to know Brad and his wife, Amy Batchelor when they moved to Boulder back in the mid-1990’s. It was coincidental that I was moving back to Boulder at the same time. After going to school at CU, I had left to try opportunities in Bozeman and Denver.
I hope you appreciated Christopher’s guests posts as much as I did. His work on building successful teams at any level is simple and obvious. As I mentioned at the beginning, we use Christopher as regular member of our leadership training program at Rally – the most recent of which was two weeks ago in our Raleigh office.