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What is Narrathon?

A Narrathon, is a peer learning experience, where you will guide and mentor each other in capturing our learning as PROBES. Over all efforts will be shepherded by founder & designer of Probes, Jutta Eckstein, and John Buck. They will work with you over multiple weeks, via following 4 online sessions and multiple offline communications:

  • 1 Feb 2020 (Saturday), 5:30 PM IST
  • 15 Feb 2020 (Saturday), 5:30 PM IST
  • 4 April 2020 (Saturday), 5:30 PM IST
  • 18 April 2020 (Saturday), 5:30 PM IST
Last day to apply is 15 Jan 2020, 11:59 PM IST (GMT+5:30)

How to join?

For registration we ask you for the following:

  • At the bottom of this page, there is the application form. You need to submit your application via it.
  • Submit an idea for a probe, consisting of a background situation (context), a hypothesis, and an experiment. This can be a probe you’ve implemented before, one you’ve discovered/heard of others implementing it, or you intend to implement. The probe should focus on Driving & Sustaining an Agile Transformation.
  • If you apply, you agree that your probe(s) could be published for inclusion in a free and publicly accessible knowledge base. Of course you will be named as the author of the probe(s) and you can still publish your probe elsewhere as well.
  • Last date of application is 15 January 2020, 11:59 PM IST (GMT + 5:30)
  • Note that probes are not evident or best or even good practices. They’re of experimental nature, this means a practice might emerge from a probe.
  • Yet, the probe that’s part of your application can be just a draft, an idea only - we will guide you using the Narrathon to create a good probe from your idea.
  • If your draft / idea for a probe is amongst the top three probes, the Narrathon will be free of charge for you. If it is not amongst the top three probes you can still sign up for the Narrathon for a fee.


As a coach, you’re often the one who needs to drive and sustain the agile transformation. Yet, how do you do this? What has helped and hindered you doing so and how can you best pass your experience on to other coaches or how can you best learn from other coaches?

This is the focal point of the Narrathon and to tackle that challenge we want to invite you to try something new:

  • We face currently the following situation: To be able to change and to drive change gets more and more important for companies to survive in this VUCA world. At the same time, it is (or should be) the core skill of every coach – no matter if you coach individuals, teams, or organizations. However, sometimes it seems every coach has to make his / her own experience on how to drive change and especially the change for an agile transformation successfully.
  • Our hypothesis is that for driving & sustaining an agile transformation, every coach uses so-called probes, that are defined by small, safe-to-fail experiments based on hypotheses derived from reflection on the current situation as well as on theory. So, probing allows discovering (based on the hypothesis) what’s working and what is not through one or several experiments. This allows us to make sense of both the current situation but even more important of the situation we are aiming for. And if we create a knowledge base of our collective wisdom on probes we used (or intend to use) we can learn from each other.
  • Therefore, as an experiment we want to invite you to jointly discover, share, create, improve, and finally publish probes that help(ed) driving and sustaining an agile transformation. We will use the new format of a Narrathon to guide the creation of the probes. We anticipate as a result that the discovered and created probes will provide a foundation for such a knowledge base.

Definition and structure of a probe:

Probes are defined by small, safe-to-fail experiments based on hypotheses derived from reflection on the current situation as well as on theory.

Use the below structure to create your Probe:

  • Name: (Most often stated as a question)
  • Background: (Definition of the context)
  • Hypothesis: (Definition of what you expect to happen and observable impact)
  • Safe-to-fail experiment: (Definition of what do you want to try and how you can (in) validate the hypothesis)

In summary, a probe is defined by a name, background, hypothesis, and one or several experiments.

Probes nourishing continuous learning:

Example Probe:

Here's a real-world example probe. And note, it's not spectacular (yet probes don't need to be spectacular..):

  • Name: Will consent decision-making improve involvement and agreement?
  • Background: Not everyone can be equally involved in decision-making. Individuals dominate decision-making.
  • Hypothesis: With consent decision-making in everyone's' toolbox especially difficult decisions can be made by mutual agreement
  • Experiment: EGs [these are specific kinds of teams] where decision-making is repeatedly described as difficult (based on a survey) are trained in consent decision-making. After e.g. 6 weeks, a new survey should be carried out. If consent decision-making is considered as a useful tool, all EGs will be trained in their use.

Registrations closed!