Yann Steimer, PMP
We don’t need an accurate document, we need a shared understanding – this quote from Jeff Patton at one of his Agile 2012 session could be a good summary of one of the very positive aspect of introducing Agile in your organization.
Last Tuesday, I had the chance to attend a Swiss Corporate Network Group whole day session on "Scaled Agile". It's one of the privilege we have at the board of PMI is that we always have 2 seats available at those sessions. In two words, the SCNG is an association with representatives from all the 1'000+ FTEs companies in Switzerland that have an interest in project management; you will find there the big banks, pharmaceutical companies, large IT providers, … They meet 3 or 4 times a year and pick interesting subjects and share best practices during full day sessions.
It's really funny how agile is trendy since a few years and as we learned at this session, it is still a "word" for most people. I even have a few examples in my practice where customers demand that the project managers we provide are agile certified and have concrete experiences. And when we arrive there, we discover that they do "iterative waterfall" that they call "agile".
And this was not the case of the companies that presented at the event; not only had those companies years of experience with agile teams and also experienced "scaled agile" that is a way to apply agile methodology at the program and portfolio level. So coming back at the title of this article, there are 3 main benefits:
- That documentation is no longer so critical with agile as the whole team is on-boarded and with the daily meetings, the understanding of the whole group increases. In the traditional approach, there are one or two guys writing the specifications that have the global overview of the project. They gave the example of a complex regulatory project where at the end of the project, the whole offshore Indian team could explain to top executives the content of the project in details.
- That today not implementing agile will drive your best resources away as this is the latest trend on the market and your most talented people want to be at the edge
- That is allows to drastically reduce the time to market. Also here, they showed an example of a project that would never have been delivered on time with the traditional waterfall approach.
And just as a final confirmation that this topic is key, I had this morning a company information session where they stressed how the market digitalization is so linked with this methodology. And where else than this chapter can you learn about this ? so join our events and become a volunteer as I let you guess what the topic of this year's volunteer day will be.