Stop overusing the word Agile

Agile is the fanciest word in software development and I think it is time to stop overusing the word Agile. Almost every job description mention requirement of knowing agile methodologies or even better to have agile experience. However Agile Manifesto values and principles are not known. Usually, when you ask people what they think Agile means – they crumble.

I have two heavy demands to all of you.

Stop overusing the word Agile if you are not sure what it means.

It’s probably because people often confuse being Agile with:

  • free snacks at the cafeteria,
  • working remotely,
  • having flexible working hours,
  • working in IT in general.

So, you see, you can do all of that and still won’t be agile, since being agile is not something you do or don’t do. It’s the state of mind and your approach to solving problems.

Stop overusing the word Agile to explain your behavior.

Another common thing across junior agile practitioners is explaining their actions, giving some kind of imaginary “Agile” as a reason. I bet it’s quite easy for you to imagine people saying:

  • An agile approach is to estimate in story points not hours!
  • We need to have retrospectives since it’s agile!
  • I can change the requirements if I want. You are agile, aren’t we?
  • We didn’t deliver anything this sprint but don’t panic, we are agile, we will handle this.

How can you learn what is a real agility?

There are plenty of articles out there, explaining very deeply this concept. Start with Agile Manifesto, and later… maybe try Agile Paper Planes workshops? ✌

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