in Agilität, Literaturtipps, Projektmanagement - Praxis

Agile Methoden – nur keinen Fundamentalismus!

Ich lese seit einiger Zeit (mit Unterbrechungen) das Buch „Making Sense of Agile Project Management – Balancing Control and Agility“ von Charles G. Cobb. Allein der Titel ist ja schon Programm, der Autor löst den postulierten Anspruch allerdings auch wirklich ein.

Ein ausführlicheres Zitat der Einleitung zum Kapitel I soll die Grundgedanken illustrieren:

… it is essential to overcome some popular miscon­ceptions associated with „agile“ such as:

  • „Agile“ is an undisciplined process of simply writing code with no plan­ning, no documentation, and no disciplined methodology for how it is done.
  • The only way to be „agile“ is to implement pure agile methodologies such as Scrum.
  • At one end of the spectrum is the most extreme forms of traditional plan­driven, control-oriented methodologies like the waterfall process; at the other end are pure agile approaches like Scrum, with nothing in between.

The truth is that:

  • Implementing an „agile“ process requires just as much or more discipline as traditional approaches such as the Waterfall model, but it’s a different kind of discipline. Rather than relying on rigidly defined and prescriptive methodologies, agile approaches rely much more heavily on the training and skill of collaborative, cross-functional teams to adapt the methodology to the problem that they are attempting to solve.
  • Pure forms of agile like Scrum have many advantages, but they can be very difficult to implement and aren’t necessarily appropriate for all business environments and projects. Many businesses require a balance of control and agility, which may be more suited to a hybrid approach.
  • There are many ways companies can become „more agile“ without nec­essarily going to the extreme of a pure agile approach, but it may take a more sophisticated approach to blend together the right combination of agile and non-agile methodologies and practices to craft a customized approach. The best approach is always to fit the methodology and practices to the business environment and problem you’re trying to solve rather than force-fitting a project to a particular methodology, but doing that requires a much higher level of skill and it requires developing an understanding of the methodologies and practices at a deeper level.

There are many companies that are locked into very cumbersome and bureau­cratic traditional methodologies that don’t see how to improve that situation, because it can be so difficult to move to a pure agile approach and there is also a fear of losing control in the process. Part I of the book is designed to help companies understand some of principles behind agile approaches in order to see how to develop an appropriate strategy for how to integrate more agile practices into the way they do business.

Genau darauf kommt es an: Die Idee verstehen (dazu ein früherer Blog-Eintrag etwas ausführlicher), die Prinzipien auf die eigene spezifische Situation intelligent anwenden und einen kontinuierlichen Verbesserungsprozess einleiten. Man hüte sich – aber nicht nur hier – vor Fundamentalismus und Perfektionismus und man sollte nicht mutlos sein.

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