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Individual problems with Agile methodologies

 
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Tim Holloway wrote:Agile is supposed to be a co-operative effort where everyone works towards a common goal by progressive steps and I'm really sorry........



By the way one of my main dislikes for agile is that thingy called lean, and it is totally besides that 'we as a group' narrative. First I am deaf, and then also I have always learnt and processed new information best by reading on my own in silence (even before I have had hearing problems). It is how my mind works. Some learn by discussion, I process information in concentration on my own. So this 'no documentation because nobody wants to read it anyway', scrapes my soul to begin with. And that is totally independent of the management.
 
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Tim I do not want to start a new topic. I just commented on somebody here in the other thread. Agile discussions always lead to the same outcome anyway: If you do not like it, it is the management fault. If it is not the managements fault, it is because you are not good enough. Agile is revered, holy and sacred. Just the title you chose says it. If I have problems with agile, it is just my individual problem and I should keep quiet otherwise it damages my career. Tell me something new.
 
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Well it, is Management's fault when it's used to destroy morale. Agile is supposed to be a positive force and a guide, not a bludgeon. The Agile Manifesto makes this abundantly clear. No overpriced tools, no overpriced consultants, just a commitment to quality by realizing that it's better to release a product in imperfect stages with feedback than to delay results forever, then deliver something that people will despise the first time they use it. Agile is at heart a philosophy, not a product.

Speaking of the Manifesto, as I recall it neither mentions Scrum nor "lean" - which locally at least has no direct bearing on whether you're using Agile or even developing software and is in fact simply Management's trademark for making too few people do too many things and you'd bloody well like it or else. There's more than one way for Management to be abusive, after all.

Another thing not part of the Manifesto is not documenting things. Documentation to me is critical regardless of the methodology used. I would consider it essential to Agile because if you're going to have what is effectively a fluid contract between users and developers, that contract had better well exist in concrete form and be maintained as the process shapes itself. It's both protection against abuse and a reminder of what the goals and priorities are.

Is everybody in your area abusing Agile this badly, or is this just one really bad Dilbert company that's traumatized you?
 
Tim Holloway
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BTW, a commentary on two items of the Agile Manifesto that I found notables:

Agile Manifesto wrote:
Business people and developers must work
together daily throughout the project.

Build projects around motivated individuals.
Give them the environment and support they need,
and trust them to get the job done.



1. I don't really agree with "daily", since a lot of what I do can take more than one day to fully realize. "Often" works better for me.

2. I think it's pretty clear from what you've said that Management (implied here, since it says "give") isn't giving you the environment and support you need, isn't keeping you motivated, and definitely doesn't seem to trust you.

It's been said more than once that in software development, the challenge for Developer Management is usually less about motivating people than it is about not de-motivating them. Software professionals can usually motivate themselves or else they simply drop out of the field altogether. It's not the kind of a career that many of us can simply take or leave.

 
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Tim Holloway wrote:the challenge for Developer Management is usually less about motivating people than it is about not de-motivating them.


Well-said. This memo needs to be sent to almost all my past managers.
 
Tim Holloway
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Bear Bibeault wrote:

Tim Holloway wrote:the challenge for Developer Management is usually less about motivating people than it is about not de-motivating them.


Well-said. This memo needs to be sent to almost all my past managers.



I didn't invent it. I'm fairly sure I've read it more than once over the years and probably at least once in something by Ed Yourdon - I had a lot of his books.

Now if you want a quote you can credit me with, it's this:

Tim Holloway wrote:
The deadliest words in Information Technology are "All You Have To Do Is..."

 
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Jan de Boer wrote:So this 'no documentation because nobody wants to read it anyway', scrapes my soul to begin with. And that is totally independent of the management.


My team has a culture of "document everything" while still doing Scrum. We have a lot of information on a wiki.
 
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