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Monthly Archives: February 2015

Agile Project Management Software Survey: What Managers REALLY Want

Software Advice has recently published the findings of a survey among project managers on what agile software features and functionality are most advantageous to team success, and they have graciously provided us their charts and figures to discuss the results. Among other findings, 48 percent of respondents use agile software for mostly non-software development projects. Delineating the Best Agile Software Top Project Types Managed with Agile Software What the above chart reveals is what long-practicing …

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Is Agile Just a Project Management Framework?

Johanna Rothman goes with agile the way Lady Liberty goes with the United States. And now she is using her terrible swift sword to take point at more agile misconceptions. Rothman vanquishes the notion that agile is just a project management framework. Her Truth is Marching On A few separate, related misconceptions are actually cleared up. First up, teams do need to watch their work in progress (WIP). Rothman relates a team that learned about …

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3 Key Factors All Agile Projects Need to Succeed

Agile can feel pretty ‘hands-off’ compared to waterfall, but that is because a lot of careful, behind-the-scenes consideration went into the agile implementation. Simon Boichat pulls back the curtain to pinpoint three factors that enable agile success on a regular basis. Agile Lock Picks Collaboration Constant focus on value Appropriate level of quality Collaboration occurs across multiple levels on an agile project. Stakeholders give feedback to product owners, product owners interpret and convey what stakeholders …

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Letting Go of the Illusion of Control with Agile

When you really want to get new software product development started off right, your instinct might be to micromanage its every detail in an unyielding plan. But as HossamEldin Bayoumy points out, few organizations care whether you have “followed the plan;” they only care that the finished product delivers value. If you embrace agile, you can trim your plan and still deliver value. Freeing Your Mind The problem with extremely detailed plans is that they …

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Four Principles for Avoiding ‘Faux Agile’

Whether or not we actually use the term, we all know what faux agile is. It is when you drop the ball with gathering requirements, or skip regression testing after the last bug fix to hit a deadline. Jennifer Lent writes for TechTarget with four principles for keeping true to the spirit of agile, so that nobody calls you out for being a big fat phony. No-Phony Four Be incremental, not sequential. Avoid nonessential overhead. …

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Lean Efforts Serve Up Big Benefits for IT Leaders

Lean has long since stopped being a process just for use at Toyota. Organizations are now getting lean in various ways for the purpose of improving the customer experience. Tom Pesaturo writes for CIO Insight with how lean can be a smart next step for IT leaders. Lean on Me, IT One place where lean can improve processes is with regard to the lack of strategic alignment between leadership and employees executing the work. If …

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The Chaos of Estimation: Many Answers, but No Easy Answers

Ron Jefferies has been in the software development game for quite a long time, and in anticipation of the publication of his new book, he has taken to writing some thoughts about estimation. He tackles the topic from several angles, hoping to make the process at least an ounce simpler than when you first walked in the door. I Estimate a Hard Time Jefferies starts by comparing estimation at large and small scales. Whereas he …

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Stop Calling Your Sprint Review a Demo—Words Matter!

Is there truly such a difference between a sprint review versus a sprint demo? Oh yes, and Ken Rubin has a real bone to pick with you if you prefer to call them demos. In a post at Scrum Alliance, he outlines why a review is the only thing you need. Review Your Word Choice In the first place, Rubin finds that calling it a sprint “demo” implies that it is a means to reaching …

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Does Agile Work because We are Optimistic?

Johanna Rothman read a Businessweek article from this past January that found that optimists tend to underestimate the effort involved in getting big tasks done. This also causes optimists to take more risks in innovating. In a post at her blog, Rothman wonders if optimism is agile’s secret ingredient. Powered by a Dream In contrast to the optimists, pessimists are actually the most likely to accurately predict how long it will take to complete tasks, …

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How Using Agile Can Help with Risk Management

Traditional risk management practices are still deeply rooted in many organizations, and it is part of the problem why they have trouble fully adopting an agile methodology. As far as inhibitions go, at least this is a noble one. But Steve Berczuk writes for Agile Connection how agile and risk management can work effectively together. Tradition vs. Today There is a tendency to try to minimize loss over maximizing gain, and traditional risk management is …

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