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An Introspective & Call for a Next Level Agile

On a Saturday morning after a run on the beach in Playa del Carmen, I sat down in one of my favorite café and write: I’ve been practicing production and delivery systems and frameworks for “projects” for almost 22 years when we should be writing Products and Services. Yes, although…

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What is agile?

An agnostic and objective introduction

Agile is one of the big buzzword in the IT and Software development industry, as well as more and more into the entire enterprise.
But exactly what is agile ?

Put simply, agile is philosophy, a culture, a way of working.
Allow me this very core objective and experienciel definition of Agile:
Agile is a set of 4 values and 12 principles that give people, teams and organizations a foundation that will help them to make decisions that results in better software development, products and services delivering a high quality customer experience and satisfaction as well as providing a better world of work with satisfying stakeholders and employee experience.
Inspiration : Mike Beedle and Mark Shead.

Agile Lounge, with its innovative coaching, teaches you better ways to transform your organization and adapt the four Agile Manifesto values and twelve principles, creating a better work experience with your stakeholders IT and business.

17 people, mostly software engineers, got together in 2001 to discuss and share their concerns about the traditional approach to delivering software development projects which were failing far too often, and that there had to be a better way.
They came up with the Agile Manifesto, which describes four important values which are as relevant today as they were then

It says, “We value:
Individuals and interactions over processes and tools
Working software over comprehensive documentation
Customer collaboration over contract negotiation
Responding to change over following a plan
That is, while there is value in the items on the right, we value the items on the left more.

Ever since then, the use of practices that support these values has become increasingly popular.

From my use of various Agile practices, I have listed 10 key tactical principles of agility. These are characteristics that are common to all Agile application frameworks that adopt the Agile values and principles, and the components that I think make Agile fundamentally different as compared to a traditional waterfall approach to software development and any IT/User Experience Product development.

They are:

  1. Active user involvement is imperative
  2. The team must be empowered to make decisions (Self organize team)
  3. Requirements evolve but the timescale is fixed
  4. Capture requirements at a high level; lightweight & visual
  5. Develop small, incremental releases and iterate
  6. Focus on frequent delivery of products
  7. Complete each feature before moving on to the next
  8. Apply the 80/20 rule
  9. Testing is integrated throughout the project lifecycle – test early and often
  10. A collaborative & cooperative approach between all stakeholders is essential

There are various pratices and frameworks that are collectively known as Agile, as they promote the values of the agile manifesto and they are consistent with the above principles. The most popular ones are:

  • Scrum
  • Kanban
  • XP

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