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All joking aside, I have received many Captain Kangaroo references as of late and felt like it was my obligation to explain a little further in hopes that I can justify my stance.
In the very early days of the Agile movement, I clearly remember people fighting and joining camps over which of the agile methods would come out victorious over all of the rest. Some rated the winner by adoption rate. Others called themselves the winner based on community acceptance. Still all insisted their path to Agile success was the only road you could take.
At the beginning of the hit children's TV series Captain Kangaroo, the theme always starts with Good Morning Captain. The more I think about that, the more I realize that my morning in this work space erupted when I pointed out that there was no single agile method that addressed everything an enterprise company was trying to adopt. Hence, I told people, (before the Prius), to drive the Agile Hybrid to find success.
I preached adoption as a staged happening and convinced industry leaders to start trying to take small steps toward organizational adoption. Here we are a number of years later and I am singing a very familiar tune. Good Morning Captain! Some large organizations are still not ready to part ways with the product requirements documents and technical specs. Some businesses are still gasping for the gantt chart view and really worried about all things resource allocation related. Even a couple of weeks ago I had a VP ask how to increase productivity on his team to surpass 85%.
For a moment or two I thought the Agile Kool-Aid was starting to change flavors. I was almost convinced that I needed to drop everything and re-engage with the PMI group. Then I realized.. This is how things should be. This really is the great leap in the Agile Movement. This is the moment of truth for many organizations. This is the Pass / Fail moment of the degree cycle. This is the coming to truth all cards on the table hands down pants on the ground moment. I was not going to be caught looking like a fool with my pants on the ground!
It was like a great light that switched on for me! I realized that work at the base level can continue to be delivered in an Agile fashion. Much like it always has been. The hard deliverable can still be built without any extra effort as part of the normal delivery cycle. The Larger scale deliverable are still handled outside of the pouch and can be managed to as pieces that happen as a result of doing Agile.
It is time for teams to pull up their pants, put on a belt, turn the hat straight and not be caught with their pants on the ground. It is time for Managers to realize that in large scale organizations that it is time to let go of the Lost flash sideways where they are still dreaming of the way things could have been. Organizations need to embrace Agile metrics and form a renewed focus on what matters most and draw people toward a better understanding of Agile Metrics. We need to get away from the world of resource allocation and work breakdown structure. We need to return to what really is and focus all hands on deck toward the best solution. The Agile Solution.
The Members of the esteemed Jury have reached a verdict:
We, the members of the jury hereby find Agile GUILTY on all counts of improving the predictability & delivery of software Products and Projects. We also find Agile GUILTY of making lives easier and making work a better place to be. As a result, we hereby sentence Agile to LIFE without the possibility of parole within your organization!
How lucky can you be!