You’re not agile!

Posted on February 14th, 2009 in Agile by siddharta || No Comment

The article that follows first appeared in the Tools For Agile newsletter.

It’s not enough to follow a set of practices to be agile. You also need to understand the principles behind them. Many teams that are adopting agile for the first time make the mistake of following a set of practices without understanding them fully. In today’s feature story, we’ll take a look at a few common situations of dysfunctional agile

  • You do a daily standup meeting, but it takes an hour – A standup meeting should take 10 mins max. The idea is to keep the team informed, then get on with work. Long meetings are BORING.
  • You implement a feature in one iteration and test it in the next iteration – A common mistake is to develop features in one iteration and hand them over to the testing team to test in the next iteration. This sort of phased handover can cause problems. Instead, do the testing in the same iteration that a feature was developed in.
  • You have iterations, but you don’t make a release at the end of the iteration – It’s not enough to use iterations. The mantra is to have working, running software at the end of every iteration.
  • The Project Manager/ScrumMaster plans the iteration – Agile works best with self organized teams. Leave it to the team to figure out what to do and how to get things done.
  • You never talk to the customer/end user – Agile relies on feedback to make sure you’re building the right software. If you don’t ever show the releases to your customer, then you can end up with software that they don’t want.

There are many more of course, but these are some of the more common ones. Are any of your practices on this list?

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