Being Agile: Eleven Breakthrough Techniques to Keep You from “Waterfalling Backward” is a book that aims to provides some techniques that will help teams starting to adopt an Agile approach to software development to solve some of the issues they will face. If your team is tempted to get back to the traditional project management approach, you will find material in this book to continue your journey towards Agile.
This book reviews several of the foundational concepts in agile. It covers the principles that are related to each concept and discusses the corresponding practices that complement the principles. It offers a breakthrough technique at the end of each chapter that provides a tool for teams that are aiming to the goal of “being Agile” instead of just “doing Agile.” Each chapter is divided into four main sections: Principles, Practices, Metrics, and Breakthrough. The principle section provides the conceptual foundation upon which the topic is built and shows how the ensuing practices support the concept. The practices described are those necessary for really making a transformation in an agile way.
This book is well written and easy to read. It provides interesting material with a good balance between the presentation of concepts and practical experience from the real life. I will recommend it to every software development manager involved in the changes towards an Agile approach for software development, which as we know is a perpetual journey.
Reference: Being Agile: Eleven Breakthrough Techniques to Keep You from “Waterfalling Backward”, Leslie Ekas, Scott Will, IBM Press
Perhaps a subtle, but nonetheless real inhibitor to pursuing active stakeholder interaction is the mistaken belief that development organizations truly understand what customers want: “We know what customers want; they told us!” “We talked to customers during initial project planning, and they were all in agreement that this is exactly what they want!” Well, as the opening story demonstrates, customers’ minds can change, especially when they begin to see the implementation of requested features. And the longer the release cycles are, the more likely it is that your customers’ needs and priorities will evolve. Staying isolated from your customers for long periods of time during a release (because you think you already know what they want)
If you want to get into the habit of not accumulating waste, try this technique: Limit defect priorities to just one classification: “ Fix it now! ”
If you truly want to learn fast, try 1-week iterations. Whether you stick with 1-week iterations is not important, but you can quickly learn what is required to get to “Done!”