This article is a copy of a linkedin post by the same name I wrote last week.
It seems to have struck a nerve so I wanted to post it here as an article. I had 5 followup posts that are linked to at the end of this article.
I don’t see Agile as dead, or even dying. But it has stagnated
I’m not willing to start something new & have it take another 10 yrs to cross the chasm. My efforts are to build off what people have done while adding what’s missing
THE CORE CAUSES OF WHERE WE ARE
1. Scrum & SAFe have created a demand for certification which has resulted in training which is focused on information, not problem-solving
2. the training methods used ignore the science of learning & require more coaching than would otherwise be necessary
3. these companies have defended against change because controlling this “Agile Industrial Complex” is a wealth generator
4. Agile is dominated by Scrum’s team-centric approach & by SAFe’s heavy-handed method of combining teams
5. Little responsibility for adoption failures are taken by Scrum & SAFe promoters, who tend to blame those using their approaches incorrectly, ignoring that these frameworks literally create this behavior
6. The prevalent negativity towards management while not providing management a path to become more effective
7. A conflation of simple to explain & simple to use
THIS HAS RESULTED IN
8. A focus on learning frameworks instead of having people learn how to solve their problems
9. Frameworks being rigid. Most adoptions start with pre-set configurations that are not fit for purpose & tend to stagnate.
10. Exorbitantly priced, ineffective training
11. A lack of a scientific approach to improving our methods
A NEW FOCUS IS REQUIRED
12. A focus on stakeholder value & what success means to them
13. Creating business agility based on the value stream while encompassing essential enterprise architectures.
14. Provide a way for internal training organizations to offer low-cost, high-quality training in the workplace
15. Self-organization within the context of the value streams
THESE (EXISTING) CONCEPTS ARE NEEDED
16. A systems thinking view based on value streams.
17. Use a foundation of first principles from Flow, Lean, & the Theory of Constraints
18. Effective technical practices
19. Double & triple-loop learning
20. Flexible frameworks that are easily tuned to those using them.
21. Integrating how people learn into training / coaching methods. Include concepts such as cognitive load & bounded rationality.
22. Incremental training methods with integrated coaching methods
23. virtual collaboration boards to enable better communication amongst teams & groups of teams. This would enable self-documenting & asynchronous collaboration
24. Effective quality product management
We want to build off what people have done.
Here are the followup posts
- Moving Agile Forward
- The Goal of Agile in Today’s World
- A Mindset shift and moving away from static frameworks is needed
- What we need to do regarding Training and Coaching
- How to Fix Agile Training, and yes, it desperately needs fixing.
- Creating an Agile Community
- What is Amplio and How It Was Created
It’s useful to see the evolution of Agile methods. And not be left using old methods. Wherever you are on the spectrum you can keep using what you’ve learned while going to the next step.
If you want to learn more about this approach, check out these two online, Amplio workshops:
In this every other week series Al Shalloway will discuss topics he thinks are important but either overlooked or done poorly. These will include topics like dealing with complexity, the risks of using frameworks, and how the lessons of engineering can be useful in product development. He will also talk about his own approaches to the team, enterprise, SAFe, and being a coach.
This workshop is primarily for coaches who want to go to the next level and transcend particular approaches but instead think for themselves. It is also useful for people in an organization who are responsible for how effective their coaches are.