Agile Principle 10: No Place For Snipers!

Agile development relies on close cooperation and collaboration between all team members and stakeholders.

Agile development principles include keeping requirements and documentation lightweight, and acknowledging that change is a normal and acceptable reality in software development.

This makes close collaboration particularly important to clarify requirements just-in-time and to keep all team members (including the product owner) ‘on the same page’ throughout the development.

You certainly can’t do away with a big spec up-front *and* not have close collaboration. You need one of them that’s for sure. And for so many situations the latter can be more effective and is so much more rewarding for all involved!

In situations where there is or has been tension between the development team and business people, bringing everyone close in an agile development approach is akin to a boxer keeping close to his opponent, so he can’t throw the big punch! :-)

But unlike boxing, the project/product team is working towards a shared goal, creating better teamwork, fostering team spirit, and building stronger, more cooperative relationships.

There are many reasons to consider the adoption of agile development, and in the near future I’m going to outline “10 good reasons to go agile” and explain some of the key business benefits of an agile approach.

If business engagement is an issue for you, that’s one good reason to go agile you shouldn’t ignore.


See also:
10 Key Principles of Agile Software Development
Active user involvement is imperative
Agile requirements are barely sufficient

2 Responses to “Agile Principle 10: No Place For Snipers!”

  1. ben ross says:

    Erghhhh, don’t be swayed by this litany of jargon….. agile is dead…. does not work. Did not work in 2000 still doesn’t work now. If you deliver an It project many aspects of that project need to be delivered in a specific order. They cant be in parallel, they must be staged and each has to be done once the other is complete, there’s no getting away from it. Be as agile as you want to create the illusion… secretly you’re just waterfall.

    People like to think they are embracing Agile, in reality they’re not….


  2. Kelly Waters says:

    Hi Ben,

    Shame you have such a strong opinion that agile doesn’t work.

    I don’t think it’s reasonable to generalise like that, as there are many people in the world who feel they are delivering better and enjoying their work far more in an agile environment than before.

    I would not generalise that waterfall doesn’t work. I had a lot of success before agile using very traditional waterfall methods and managing projects using PRINCE2. But I’ve had even more success with agile.

    I don’t agree that all projects have a set order that things have to be done. Of course many do, but many don’t. I’ve used agile methods on both types of project and it’s worked very well.

    On those that have a lot of dependencies and a set order and can’t be released until everything is done, it has still been a useful way to gauge real progress from demonstrable, tested working software and has significantly de-risked those projects, which I believe are inherently more risky to start with.

    On those projects that have fewer interdependencies and can be released incrementally, we have delivered earlier improvements for our users and starting accumulating business benefits earlier.


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