Agile, do you get it?

Posted on January 8, 2011

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What is more important to you?  Building a  team?  Or, building a product?  It is my belief that this simple question can determine the level of understanding you have of Agile.  If you are in the majority and answer, “building a product,” I begin assessing the likelihood of changing your mind, by asking directing questions.  If you are one of the special few that answer, “building a team,” I am immediately excited and would likely start a twenty minute rant about how amazing it is to meet someone with the same vision.  Did I mention that I am an Agile Coach?

Whether you are working at a start-up that was built on Agile Principles and Practices or a long standing company that is in it’s infancy of transitioning to Agile, building great teams is the single most important thing you can do to be successful.  Agile is about people and teams, not about products.  The amazing products that agile teams produce are a bi-product of the agile culture, that fosters and grows amazing teams and the individuals therein.  Too often, people focus on processes, practices, and products.  Instead, they should spend their time focusing on their people, and more importantly, focus on creating great teams with those people.  Don’t misinterpret my statement of the importance of building teams over focusing on people.  You cannot have one without the other.  Without great people, you will never create great teams.  Without great teams, you will never reap the full benefits of Agile.  Not to say that products are not important.  That’s why we need these great people and teams in the first place.  But, the product should remain a distant third when being prioritized against people and teams.

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Posted in: Agile Methods