Category Archives for Agile

Agile metrics: you’re doing it wrong

I’ve been spending more time reading forums, groups and Quora about Agile. I’ve noticed a type of question coming up over and over again. People seem obsessed with finding the answer to the misguided question “what are the best metrics and KPIs we can use for measuring our teams in Agile?”. I’ve talked before about […]

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Myths of agile: Agile means fast and cheap

I thought I was finished with my “myths of Agile” series. But I’ve come across another one that still rears its ugly head from time to time. The idea is that everybody should all do Agile because it means you can do the same work, but “faster” and “cheaper”. Which is everyone wants. Right? Agile […]

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Bimodal IT theory

A few years ago, research organization Gartner came up with this concept called Bimodal IT theory. This basically said that for any large organisations, there are two types of IT systems. These types serve different purposes, are built with different technologies, serve different customers, have different cost and risk profiles, and should be kept separate. And […]

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The history and future of management

Many organisations today are run according to management principles which are 50 to 100 years old. These methods are not appropriate to the fluid and fast-paced world we live in, but many organisations are struggling to change. In this article, I will talk about the history and future of management theory, so we can understand […]

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What is Test Driven Development (TDD)?

Test Driven Development or TDD is a technical practice that is often (though not always) used by people doing Agile software development. It represents a different approach to both testing and development. It can be difficult and cumbersome at first, but many people believe that it has big payoffs in the long term. I’ll talk […]

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Let’s stop talking about requirements

I get a bit sad when I hear the word “requirements”. It is a word that strongly reminds me of the bad old Waterfall days. The origin of requirements Back then, we would talk about “requirements” all the time. Projects would start with a big scary BRD (Business Requirements Document), which sometimes spilt over into […]

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The most common reason Agile fails

There are plenty of examples of Agile going wrong. Big government projects trying Agile and crashing and burning. Or “Zombie scrum”. Or “Cargo Cult Agile”. These are all sad stories and all too common. So what goes wrong? There are lots of reasons. Some of them are cultural, some of them are technical, some of […]

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Agile product funding

Agile Product Funding and Teams I’ve talked before about the problems with project teams and project funding. To summarise: projects are generally short-lived affairs, and can often leave a mass of technical debt and half-finished work behind them project teams are generally short-lived affairs, and project managers can willfully set them on death marches, since […]

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Cargo Cult Agile

You sometimes hear about “Cargo Cult Agile”, and you might be wondering what that means. It’s a cute term with an interesting and funny history. But the thing itself is not funny at all. This article will explain what it is, where it comes from, and what to do about it. What does “cargo cult” mean? […]

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Obligation to dissent and the circle of safety

I read an article recently about “obligation to dissent“. It’s an interesting phrase with some important concepts behind it. Some of these concepts tie closely into the principles of Agile. Some organisations foster a culture where dissent is welcome, others don’t. This is an important clue into the overall health of that organisation. What is […]

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