There’s been a movement afoot in the agile community for a while. It’s about getting back to basics. I characterize it as:

  • Agile leadership is nice, but…
  • Agile planning & forecasting is nice, but…
  • Agile Project Managers are great, but…
  • All the certifications are nice, but…
  • Scaling frameworks are nice, but…
  • Accenture, Gartner, etc. interest is nice, but…
  • DevOps and Business Agility are nice, but…
  • Adoption, transformation, etc. are nice, but…
  • Making $billions is nice, but…

We’ve lost the essence of agility. We’ve forgotten the very things that got everyone excited in the first place. The simplicity. The power of the team. The results that an engaged customer can inspire.

I hate to tell you, but SAFe isn’t agile. Nor is Scrum. Nor is DevOps or Business Agility.

Agility is about a mindset on the part of the entire organization.

If you want to get back to the roots of agility I encourage you to research the following…

And you might want to investigate how Spotify is implementing agile practices. Not putting them up on a pedestal but considering them a role model for learning the basics of agility in practice.

https://www.infoq.com/news/2016/10/no-spotify-model

The Agile Donut

One final recommendation. My friend Josh Anderson was the agile champion and a leader at a company called Dude Solutions for a few years. During that time, he had the opportunity to grow a set of agile teams from scratch. Not only the teams but the methods and approaches they used.

This sort of a greenfield opportunity is rare and he made the best of it.

He called his agile approaches the Agile Donut and we discussed the details on our Meta-cast podcast. You can listen to it here - http://www.meta-cast.com/2016/02/episode-87-introducing-agile-donut.html

Wrapping Up

All of the dogma, complexity, framework frenzy and other “additions” to the essence of agility simply makes me sad. I think as agilists we owe it to ourselves to study the roots of agility and spend some time looking for simplicity.

First, it’s worth the effort to understand the evolution better and second, it just might make your agile journey…agile again.

Stay agile my friends,

Bob.

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