I have seen many successes of Agile in my career. Most of the clients we worked with at Net Objectives considered our work there successful as evidenced by us having many repeating clients. When I go through the successes, I see the following patterns:
- Teams wanted to do Agile and there were no external impediments to them doing it
- A leader (usually at the director level) grasped one or more of the following key insights/practices and used them as a way to move forward based on their own judgement.
- Everything was subordinate to delivering value to the customer (& they had learned about MBIs)
- Reducing delays in the workflow was critical
- ATDD was embraced by teams and product owners
- We closely worked with them to create workflow to deliver value (these were usually our Agile at scale, long engagements)
- We improved their technical skills
- We unobscured what their real problems were and they solved the
- We taught them lean & then guided them in using it to change their team structures to reduce delay in workflow
This is not a complete list. In 20+ years I’ve seen few cases of just taking a framework and it working. Applying principles and natural laws in the client's context was always critical.