Re-inspect and re-adapt

January 2, 2017 · Agile Talk Inspect Adapt

Do you inspect and adapt on yourself? Have you ever read a book twice? Have you read the agile manifesto recently? When was the last time you realized you were wrong?

In Hamburg, I held a talk called Agile Mythbusters at the XP-Days conference. In this talk, I presented 8 polarizing ideas designed to spark discussions. Among others: "agile is fast", "agile means no managers" and "agile means no tools, no documentation and no plan". The whole point of the talk was to invite the attendees to re-inspect and re-adapt their own knowledge on a regular basis.

Experience has a very interesting effect on the material we ingest. One sentence, chapter or thesis can be understood very differently depending on one's level of experience. If you read a book at the beginning of your career and 10 years later, you might discover something you missed completely because you simply were not ready.

In one of my last projects, we attempted to weight our decisions & actions on a regular basis using the agile manifesto. We lost some battles to the Enterprise-Kraken and our own blindness/laziness, but doing so we also managed to correct some course of actions from "blindly following Scrum 'by the book'" back toward "being truly agile".

I found an excellent article in this regard lately called the Agile prison that I warmly recommend. I particularly like this sentence:

At the start of your agile journey it is useful to have a guide rope like the Scrum process to follow [...], but the aim should not be to get good at Scrum, it should be to understand Agile methodologies and the underlying principles upon which they are based ; and then use that information to respond in appropriate ways to the challenges that the complexity of your problems presents you.

This deeply resonates with a post I wrote a few months ago Scrum, you're doing it wrong where I advocated for Scrum to be only a starting point. We all need to discover agility again. We need to re-inspect and re-adapt.

Are you ready?

Image Source: Inspect by Incase (CC BY 2.0)

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