January 4, 2008

...Learn TDD with Codemanship

Post-Post-Agile Response from CEO of NetObjectives

Responding to my - typically unqualified and half-baked - rant, Alan Shalloway from NetObjectives writes:

I actually think we agree on basic thoughts and that you are misinterpreting my message.

My point is that following that many Scrum practitioners come from doing certain practices _everywhere_. Sure, they say you have to modify the practices to fit the situation, but, in fact, iterations don't actually work everywhere. The focus on practices is not sufficient. Practices change when contexts change.

However, I am not an anarchist. Far from it. I am saying that you need to understand principles and guide your practices from them.

I'm saying we have to go past the mandated _practices_ and actually figure out what works in your situation by seeing how principles (which work everywhere) can best be applied in your particular situation.

In that regard, I do believe that 'Post-Agilism is doing what works for you in the absence of Process or Practice Dogma'
To do it requires following principles - which do apply. Unfortunately, most agilists don't talk about these principles. They jump from values (which also donít change) to practices - without discussing or often, even acknowledge the importance of, principles.

I'd be interested what you think about my comments here. I also request that if you are going to make a blanket statement that I don't understand something, that you see if you understand my position first - or at least give me a forum for commenting on your comments.

Two questions spring to mind:

1. Does this apply to principles, too? I suspect so. For example, is "working software" always the best measure of progress Nope. Most definitely not always. Many projects have underlying business goals, and software isn't always the answer. Sometimes the right choice is to not deliver any software and walk away.

2. Is "not doing Scrum at all" one of the options in "Post-Agile Scrum"? I suspect not. Maybe Alan can correct me on that.

Perhaps I've got it wrong - which wouldn't surprise most people who know me - but it looks to me as though the seminar is still selling Agile, even if it is flexible about exactly what kind of Agile you end up with.

I'm advocating ditching even the Agile values if they don't work in your situation. And I wonder if, in that case, Alan and I really do agree.

Now don't get me wrong. NetObjectives are a fine company with a very fine reputation, and I'm sure this seminar will teach you something useful, so sign up if you can. But, I maintain, it's title is a misuse of the term "Post-Agile" because you cannot, by definition, do "Post-Agile" anything, and that includes Scrum, and even the Agile values themselves. Nothing - absolutely nothing - is a given.

Alan says it himself: "I am not an anarchist". But that is kind of the point.
Posted 14 years, 2 months ago on January 4, 2008