Wow, what a question! Reflecting on that a bit, early thoughts ran to prescriptive conclusions – do x, y, z and you’ll be Agile. That just didn’t ring true…
No. To me, Agile is set of practices/techniques/patterns that we use to collectively deliver our project. Each project is different, with different challenges and risks. Each team is different, with their own combination of talents and skills, made more unique because, on any day, team members bring their “self” into the equation – sometimes their “A” game, sometimes something less, all in a backdrop of a constantly-evolving corporate environment.
In all that, Agile is very much like Yoga. A discipline, an approach, a habit requiring practice. And for me, practiced on some days better than others!
No, we don’t ask “When are we going to be Yoga”?. Indeed, we just naturally recognize yoga as a lifelong pursuit of perfection: “The goal of yoga, or of the person practicing yoga, is the attainment of a state of perfect spiritual insight and tranquility.”
For Agile, we pose similarly: The goal of Agile, or of the team practicing Agile, is the attainment of a state of frictionless project delivery that is in harmony with stakeholder needs at the time of delivery.
Where are you with your Agile practice?