Agile Software Development Made Easy!  The Problem With Planning.I think I’ve been pretty successful in my career. But if I was better at planning, I wouldn’t have achieved half the things I’ve achieved in my career! In fact, I wouldn’t even have started some of them…

In reality, there are some things you can plan, and some things you can’t. The trouble is, in most organisations we’ve come to expect a plan. And to meet it whatever happens. And that’s just not realistic.

Doing detailed planning pre-supposes you know where you want to go and aren’t going to be influenced too much by what happens in the meantime – or at least not without a substantial amount of re-planning. This, at least in my experience, has a tendency to give project managers tunnel vision at times.

Now don’t get me wrong – I’m not suggesting for one moment you embark on a project that doesn’t have a clear and robust vision. And I’m not suggesting for a moment you embark on a project where you have no idea how to achieve it and whether it’s a reasonable (although hopefully challenging) goal with the available resources. And forming that into an outline plan to provide some markers to aim for is certainly a good idea, but ideally it’s a high level roadmap rather than a detailed plan.

Coming from a traditional software development environment, I realise this sounds slightly mad. And I must admit it takes a certain amount of maturity and experience to recognise that you can’t really plan in detail up-front if you want to retain any flexibility, as the real requirements, risks, issues, priorities and opportunities all tend to emerge when you start to build and see the software in action.

Most organisations are not ready to accept such a radical idea – the idea of acknowledging you don’t really know what you want – certainly not for sure – and you don’t really know what you’re going to get for your money, or when. So, as a minimum, a clear vision and outline plan are essential, but be careful to keep them to a high level.

Rather than a detailed plan, I prefer to see a strong vision, a strategy, goals, and a roadmap (high level outline plan). The tactics to achieve this, for example the precise features and all the tasks to deliver them, can vary along the way and are best not articulated up-front. This enables the team to discover the details when they are in a better position to do so, and allows them to change direction rapidly in response to changing circumstances.

This, when you think of it, is the very meaning of agile…

Kelly.

Photo by tanakawho
First published on agilesoftwaredevelopment.com

Share on facebook
Facebook
Share on twitter
Twitter
Share on linkedin
LinkedIn

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recent Posts

In The Zone with Marcin Zasepa

Welcome to the second in our new series, ‘in the zone’, a collection of conversations with CTO’s within the CTO Zone community. Each week we’ll be discussing the latest trends, insights gained from there experiences, and future predictions for their industry. This week we’d like to welcome Marcin Zasepa, CTO at Homegate AG in Switzerland. Every episode will be approximately 30 minutes

Read More »

In The Zone with Sasha Bilton

Welcome to the first in our new series, ‘in the zone’, a collection of conversations with CTO’s within the CTO Zone community. Each week we’ll be discussing the latest trends, insights gained from there experiences, and future predictions for their industry. This week we’d like to welcome Sasha Bilton. Every episode will be approximately 30 minutes long, and we aim

Read More »

Case Study: DAZN Data Engineering

Find out how 101 Ways helped DAZN improve their existing data warehouse as well as planning and setting the foundations of the new cloud-based data platform. Click here to download the full case study. Get in touch with a member of the 101 Ways team if you would like to discuss ways in which we can help you and your company

Read More »

Search the Blog

Agile Management Made Easy!

All About Agile

By Kelly Waters

“’Agile’ is one of the biggest buzzwords of the last decade. Agile methods often come across as rather more complicated than they really are. This book is an attempt to unravel that complexity. To simplify the concepts. This book breaks the concepts into small bite-sized pieces that are easy to understand and easy to implement and delivers the message in a friendly and conversational style. Allaboutagile.com is one of the most popular blogs about agile on the web. ”

Kelly Waters

Agile 101 is available to purchase. GAME ON!

Agile 101

Emma Hopkinson-Spark

“Whilst there are lots of ways you can vary the game depending on the teams you have and the learning outcomes you want, the basic flow of the game play is common to all.”
Emma Hopkinson-Spark

Why did we make the game?

How to play the game?

London

101 Ways Limited
41 Corsham Street
London
N1 6DR
United Kingdom

Manchester

101 Ways Limited
No.1 Spinningfields
Quay Street
Manchester
M3 3JE
United Kingdom

Amsterdam

101 Ways BV
Weesperstraat 61-105
1018 VN Amsterdam
Netherlands

Contact Us

If you would like to get in touch with one of the team at 101 Ways, then please fill out the form below or email us at contact-us@101ways.com.