A key practice of Agile is a sprint. A sprint is a short, focused commitment to accomplish a definable set of tasks. Often these sprints last one to two weeks.

By making a commitment to achieve something definable, it is possible for an individual or team to then reflect on what was accomplished over that short period of time. In a Retrospective of this effort, insights are illuminated that help define the goals of the next sprint.

This process creates a tightly defined Learning Cycles that accelerates the speed of learning.

Each Learning Cycle begins with a set of assumptions. But, with each sprint, as teams Walk into the Unknown, some of those assumptions are proven wrong. Deep learning happens when we identify those wrong assumptions. They are redefined and tested until they are no longer assumptions but become new ‘knowns’. This process increases our Creative Confidence as we plunge into the next sprint.

Failure occurs when our assumptions are wrong. The faster we fail and redefine those assumptions, the faster we learn. Failure, then, is not to be avoided. Indeed, failure is at the very heart of the learning. It is through failure that we better understand the true nature of the problem – an understanding that ultimately leads to a solution.

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