Thursday, April 30, 2009

Spirit of Agile Development

I have been reading, listening and seeing a lot about Agile these days. Almost everybody i meet from the industry tells me they follow Agile and typically every discussion about Agile includes

a) We have release planning meetings

b) We have iteration planning meetings

c) We have standup meetings

d) We have retrospective meetings

Sometimes these statements make me this what the Agile Manifesto even aimed at? As with every process, with the growing Agile population making their own rules, regulations and processes, Agile seems to have boiled down to the 4 meetings and user stories. Not many people who talk to me talk about what i believe is one of the core values of Agile development.."VALUE ADD TO THE CUSTOMER".

With the growing popularity of Agile, i wonder if the core values would get diluted and the entire practice would just become a fad instead of achieving the actual vision. It is time the believers of the Agile practices start driving in the core values of the practices instead of just stressing on the process to be followed. I think the processes should always start with one question "What is the value add to the customer?".

From my experience, it has not been easy to implement Agile practices. It is very easy to implement the scrum or xp or whatever processes. But at the end of the day, Agile practices are about the correct mindset.

Any practice is a mindset, unless we understand the spirit and use the process to achieve the goals, we will not be able to get the most out of the process instead it would just be "Oh yeah!! i follow this too" without any value add to anybody.

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