In recent years, agile approaches have rapidly gained ground in many parts of the world—but not everywhere. Some areas of Asia, including where I live (Taiwan), have generally speaking not yet embraced agile ideas and practices, despite their value and potential in the region. For this reason, I’ve been working to promote the adoption of agile approaches.
What is agile? It means being flexible and able to quickly adapt to unpredictability. Agile approaches are useful where the environment is constantly changing, where requirements are not fixed or where stakeholders face constant uncertainty.
Agile is typically used in software development, but it’s becoming more suitable in any organization facing rapid changes. Developed over 20 years, agile practices focus on customer value and emphasizing collaboration.
My work has involved training Agile Certified Professionals (PMI-ACP)®, organizing agile communities, promoting agile practices and reporting on the successful use of agile. I have a digital magazine, “PM-Mag ,” with over 100,000 readers across the Chinese-speaking world. Two of the editors have earned the PMI-ACP® credential.
Through my company, I ‘ve also commissioned reports and articles about the use of agile to generate its acceptance and support. I’ve also taken advantage of other media (such as radio and YouTube videos) to raise awareness of agile in the project management world. And then there are other more novel approaches—like an ACP song played at events and before speeches. I introduced a “Hybrid PM” badge that I award to project managers I see taking up agile ideas.
In the last year alone, I trained 149 PMI-ACPs, accounting for nearly 50 percent of the PMI-ACPs currently working in Taiwan.
It was my honor to win the 2015 Agile Award for Person Who Has Done the Most to Promote Agile. The competition was strong, and I’m very humbled by this recognition.
Currently in their sixth year, The Agile Awards are organized by business management consultancy Yoh to recognize businesses, organizations and individuals who actively promote knowledge of agile, as well as its proper application and development. In the past, the awards have been dominated by Europeans and Americans.
I hope that my recognition will spur more international recognition of agile methods in project management, encouraging the further development of agile in Asia and allowing European professionals to understand agile application and development throughout Asia.
To improve the acceptance of agile even more, I encourage those who have already gained their PMP to learn from agile, especially the concepts of incremental delivery, adding business value and embracing change. These new ways of running businesses can improve the competitiveness of small to medium-sized businesses. The added value is too great to ignore.