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Agile - A promising way or just another over-rated term

It's not that old when organizations used to work in phases for any IT development starting from Ideation, requirement gathering, solution design, development, testing and until UAT & launch; and things were proving to be successful and satisfactory. Then shouldn't we wonder, suddenly what made the businesses start think it's not productive anymore? There are 3 basic reasons I can think -

1. For long durations the solutions have to be stacked until the big releases so for this whole duration the product used to work with outdated concepts.
2. The handovers used to take time while other downstream resources were waiting to get the final guidelines from their upstreams to start their own work.
3. Poor, negotiated quality of the delivery and sometimes the feature is already outdated if you don't think ahead of time.

Then idea must have been triggered to bring everything together and doing smaller and more frequent releases with minimum valuable functions. The term that was coined was a big hit - 'AGILE'. Wondering why? I guess it was pure luck or may be really smooth execution. This new model of every expertise working together as team like a battalion in a war room creating war plans came out to be extremely productive and beneficial. But the thing here to understand is, there was no-one calling it an "agile migration", may be that was the biggest positive about the first profitable agile execution. Now since the organizations inform everyone 'we are moving to Agile' seems to be a hindrance to migrate the mindsets because of an obvious human resistance that comes due to the word 'migration'. 

Agile is one of the latest and ongoing trend in organizations working with IT support. But 'trends' have their own prophecy, A prophecy of complicating things in the name of making them easier. Let me explain this with a simple example. John, a 20 year old boy from a village thought of starting to sell fruits, For the first day of his new business, he kept standing silently at one spot with his fruit cart, he was able to sell to only 10 customers. after 3 days, he understood the pattern that 7 of those customers at that spot come between 8:30AM to 10AM. He thought why not find another spot after 10AM to sell more, he started walking through streets and then a few people saw him and bought fruits from him. This day he sold to 35 customers. After a week he realized that his target customers don't know when he is in the streets, so he bought a bell and started ringing it every time when he used to pass on a street. This time he sold to 60 customers. In a few days he realized that some new customers visiting his fruit cart doubted if the fruits were good, so he thought let me explain them about my fruits and started explaining the customers the quality of his fruits. However he hardly got a few more customers added. He realized he is missing something, and that is 'the showcase', the customers should see how the fruits are from the inside and be able to taste them. So, he added a small glass box in the cart where he could put the open fruits (peeled oranges, already cut papaya and apples etc.) in display and for taste. This time he realized that he sold to more than 100 customers in that day and this whole thing happened in a 3 week's period. Let's stop this story here and look at this again. The first step John did was efficient utilization of time and resources, the second step he did was Acknowledging presence and availability in market, the third step he did was consultative selling and fourth was visual merchandising & experiential marketing. Imagine that fruit seller to combine all these concepts together and calling it "5 Fruits of John" and then ask the other normal fruit sellers to migrate to the 'new' 5 fruits of John 'set up' which works on efficient resourse utilization, presence & availability acknowledgement, Consultative selling, Visual Merchandising, and Experiential Marketing. What do you think, would it be easier now for a new fruit vendor to do it in 3 weeks?

Same goes with Agile. The idea and concept of agile is very simple - if you know your problem statement, all you need is all expertise on a round table throwing ideas to resolve it. you as a team select one idea, decide what needs to be done, by whom and by when it will be complete. We choose shortest yet quality path to reach there and address the problem. If the addressal is not good enough we will surely get another problem statement soon to make it better :). Scrum is just and just one way of managing agility in organization's development model, nothing more, nothing less. Making this concept flashy with jargons and fancy words is a matter of only of complicating it. all agile means is a flexible and fast thought process. To my opinion this is one good reason for the agile migration failures ;).

PS. I am not promoting any frameworks whether agile or waterfall, I am only promoting to maintain real concepts behind any idea. Hope you enjoyed reading!

Comments

It was a good article.
Thanks

Fantastic.

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