Whenever I happen to interact with a team that is said to follow Agile, the conversation usually starts with asking the question –
‘What do you do differently?’
The answer is something that is not uncommon for most of us and we keep hearing this…
The first and foremost response invariably will be:
‘Well, we have Daily Standup calls ….’
‘Anything more?…’ – you are curious.
After a pause, you hear them saying,
‘… Sprint, we work in iterations …. And ….’
Sometimes, they hurriedly say, “we don’t do documentation!!!!’
If you probe little deeper, you often hear them reluctantly saying
‘Hmmm ….. See, we are not doing true agile…. but something … called Hybrid Agile!! ‘
That is – ‘Analysis and Design in Waterfall, CUT in Agile and SIT in waterfall…’
‘Something like Agile Fall … Scrum Fall ‘(the word ‘fall’ – here, is the substring derived from ‘Waterfall’).
Recently in an agile conference, during a casual interaction, one of my co-participant was sharing an incidence where their customer had asked the team to build features using agile development model. Without any clue, and the team responded to this customer’s request by renaming the project roles in such a way that the development model appears Agile.
The role PM was changed to Agile PM, Architect – Agile Architect, Tester – Agile Tester and so on without any fundamental change in the way the development is being done!!!
I was sharing this with one of the agile thought leaders and an industry veteran, alongside the same conference.
He quipped, “Knowing the name of something, and knowing something are two different things!!!”
No wonder, a lot of mix-match terminologies are used in the industry today.
First of all, does the term Agile – denotes or represents a Methodology? Let us look back…
The history of IID (Iterative and Incremental Development) dates back to 1950’s. Many prominent software engineering practitioners and thought leaders from succeeding decades supported these.
1950’s? This may sound ridiculous and unbelievable?