Agile - Pump More Oxygen to your Project

There has been enough talk on Agile by experts but still more than two third of the world are not aware of this fabulous practice. And most of them who aware and practicing are either do it wrongly or just for namesake.

This talk is to practice Agile in a better way which can pump more oxygen to your project, so that your project not just survive but live in a healthier way. A healthier project means a happy team and this is what the whole world want.

Before taking this talk to next level, let me tell you that I am not against other practices, but I am in favor of practicing Agile in a better way.

Most of the projects are having cross-functional teams, and that too distributed in different geographies. Almost all projects are business driven, and functional experts feel isolated when it comes to technical implementation and vice-versa. Implementation of common practices and standards within team becomes difficult in this scenario. And result is you know what - crap, a complete crap.

Every great project needs some common practices and standards on place, and most importantly a strict implementation of those practices and standards are much more required.

You may choose any of the available models to place a common practices and standards, but most of them are pretty much formal. Formal models are easy to understand and implement, and of-course pretty easy to create a mess.

In-spite of this Agile is fully informal and organic model, that is what exactly we need. It's complex to understand and truly more complex to implement, but once implemented correctly, greatness would be visible transparently.

What we make today, tomorrow it may change, doesn't matter what is the nature of your project. Business, technology, and market all are volatile, and in this environment whatever we make today should be adaptive. Another point here is that decision making about project should be diverted to the lowest responsible level, as those who are closest to the domain are in an better place to make decisions. Fortunately Agile is there to practice the same thing.

Let us see from where the more oxygen come from in Agile methodology.

Agile is making you/team Adaptive -

Before diving into this, let me tell you honestly that most of the species around world are pretty adaptive except human. Human is the only species who believes to create his own shell and wanted to be there forever. So before making your project adaptive, break-down the shell and make yourself adaptive.

 There is a confusion around about Agile/Adaptive, as people assume that it's about changing. Change anyway happens, so Agile/Adaptive teaches us that how to respond to the change and stay competitive. An adaptive leadership is opposite to directive leadership. In directive leadership, a Manager is directing to the team as per the situation and there is a huge possibility that team may collapse to follow the instruction into that situation. I have seen number of projects which has been suffered due to directive leadership, it's simply polluting the available oxygen around. On other hand, Adaptive leadership is the one where team knows well how to respond in a challenging situation.

Agile is transforming from 'I' to 'We' -

 Being a part of the team, 'I' shouldn't exist, but unfortunately it's ruling everywhere and you know the outcome - Frustrated environment. Transforming from 'I' to 'We' means sharing the adventure and knowledge with each other which helps team-mates and gives them more confidence.

Agile helps to build better collaboration within Departments -

 Almost all of the Project/Product is having three major phases, i.e. Build, Sell, and Operate. Each phase is getting handled by separate team, and in Agile they are all interconnected. Product Management is getting involved in all three phases. Developer/Tester/Designer and Product Management contributes in Build phase. Marketing Team and Product Management contributes in Sell phase. Support & Ops, Developer and Product Management contributes in Operate phase. This kind of distribution makes them stay integrated.

Agile helps diverting the decision-making to the lowest responsible level -

 A million dollar question comes here is that, how to ensure that lowest responsible level is enough capable to take the right strategic decisions. And the answer for this is that we need self-organizing teams, a trusted and motivated individuals. No one else knows better than lowest level about their threshold capabilities, so if he will be motivated enough, his contribution would be remarkable.

More oxygen means better life, so go for it.