Project Management

Are we Ready to Go Agile? That Depends Upon What You Mean by Agile

From the Manifesting Business Agility Blog
This blog concerns itself with organizations moving to business agility—the quick realization of value predictably and sustainably, and with high quality. It includes all aspects of this—from the business stakeholders through ops and support. Topics will be far-reaching but will mostly discuss FLEX, Flow, Lean-Thinking, Lean-Management, Theory of Constraints, Systems Thinking, Test-First and Agile.

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Many people in the Agile community consider a 19year old document to be the definition of Agile. While it can still serve as inspiration, I believe something that happened at the midpoint of the PC era to be defining something that is supposed to adapt and change over time to be somewhat oxy-moronic. I am referring, of course to the Manifesto for Agile Software Development (MASD). There are several reasons that I do not believe this is an efficacious approach:

  1. The MASD is team and software focused. Agile has expanded well beyond the team and software.
  2. The MASD ignored management completely and says nothing on how to do product management when beyond a team
  3. The MASD ignored systems thinking and Theory of Constraints
  4. Much has been learned over the last 19 years that is not reflected in the MASD

This does not mean Agile is dead. It just means we should use another meaning for Agile. I believe the best vision of Agile is Steve Denning’s Three laws:

  1. Law of the small team
  2. Law of the customer
  3. Law of the network

This essentially means to have small teams working towards the benefit of the customer in a network of semi-autonomous manner.

Posted on: October 25, 2020 12:55 PM | Permalink

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