Methods

Be Careful Not to Break Something While Being Agile

by Rich Hephner

Agile is all about managing change, but every organization has a different rate of change. We generally think about agile as removing impediments to accelerate development and keep up with change. It also has an important role to play in placing constraints on change so that it doesn’t spin out of control. This article is a case study of how too much change can lower quality and lead to products that completely miss the mark.

Scope Changes Within the Agile/Scrum Framework

by Karen Z. Sullivan, PMP, PSM 1

The approach to scope changes used within the agile/Scrum framework provides a stable environment so the development team can focus on getting work “done.” Frequent feedback about the product allows for less upfront planning and means the Scrum team can quickly adapt to changes. Delivering business value early and often results in increased customer satisfaction.

Principles

Back to School: Projects and Project Management (Re)Defined

by Priya Patra

If we are limited by the triple constraint, how do we as project managers lead with agility and embrace change? If projects are all about needs and values, then project management should be the tools and techniques to achieve this value. Is it time to redefine project management? Should we move away from the iron triangle to the value triangle?

Topic Teasers Vol. 88: Chalk and Cheese Teams

by Barbee Davis, MA, PHR, PMP, PMI-ACP, PMI-PBA

Question: We are now part of a project that will use both an agile and a traditional waterfall team. As our British associates say, “It’s like chalk and cheese.” Is there a smart way we can work with this other group since none of our processes will match, none of the timing will be the same and, frankly, we each believe that the others are seriously misguided in having chosen their approach to project work?
A. There is a reason for the “chalk and cheese” expression. When you mix them you either forfeit a beautiful drawing or you miss a delightful appetizer. While multiple teams can work successfully on a common deliverable, it is vital that all teams are using exactly the same approach.
B. By now, 15 years after the meeting to create the Agile Manifesto, all teams should be aware that in today’s marketplace the only way to keep your organization competitive and protect your own job is to work in an exclusively agile environment. Most of the newsworthy business closings or serious curtailing of products are in industries that refuse to go agile.
C. It is not only possible for an agile team and a traditional team to work together successfully, it’s probably going to become the norm for more and more projects in the future. The secret it to understand where you can sync your work and where you need to use the parts of your preferred approach freely in order to have the best end outcomes.
D. While agile works situationally in software, the traditional methodology espoused by A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK® Guide) has the advantage of a 55-year history. The knowledge amassed within that length of trial and error makes waterfall the preferred approach for all industries that want to make projects successful.
Pick your answer then Test Your Knowledge!

Practices

Deep Dive Models in Agile (Part 6): Decision Models

by Candase Hokanson

This series provides valuable information for the product owner community to use additional good practices in their projects. In each installment, we take one of the most commonly used visual models in agile and explain how to create one—and how to use one to help build, groom or elaborate your agile backlog. This is the last paper in this series and covers decision models, which include both decision trees and decision tables.

Succeed with Scrum: Don't Break These 7 Rules

by Anthony Mersino, PMP, PMI-ACP, CSM, CSP, PSPO

Is your organization undermining the benefits of Scrum without even knowing it? Scrum is a simple agile framework that can be difficult to implement. Here the author looks at the seven most commonly missed or abused rules of Scrum.

ADVERTISEMENTS

"A closed mind is like a closed book; just a block of wood."

- Chinese Proverb