Nick McKenna disputes the existence of Agile and Craig Norton live codes in AngularJS
Post date: Jun 29, 2014 9:30:9 PM
"There is no Agile"? A bold statement to make to a group that meets under the name of Agile Yorkshire. Nick McKenna was the main speaker at this month's meetup, sharing with us some of his experiences as a Scrum Coach/Master/Professional. "There is no Agile" becomes an even bolder statement when it is being made by someone whose career is so obviously entrenched in the stuff. The point being made was that the label of 'Agile' does not necessarily mean an organization, project or even person is going to demonstrate the qualities one might expect of something 'Agile'. Nick told us that he had met plenty of Agile teams that don't question why something is done beyond saying 'because that's what we do in DSDM/Scrum...'. Perhaps a 'by the book' style is not right for every team, Nick pondered, showing us of some Agile tools he'd invented for himself which just happened to revolve around delicious, rewarding cups of coffee.
Focusing on Scrum in particular, Nick questions the value of sprints. The fact that a team may only evaluate their productivity once every couple weeks can be very limiting and result in sizeable chunks of work that gets scrapped, which in turn could lead to an unhappy team -- another thing Nick has been saddened to see. To combat team malaise, Nick recommends TINYpulse, a system for collecting anonymous feedback on the mood of a team via short, snappy surveys.
As a long term observation, Nick has also noticed that the velocity of Agile teams is generally on a downward trend. Another side-effect of time-boxed work, perhaps? An Agile regime can be relentless and draining, with few diversions and little opportunity to branch out and be creative. Nick's cure? Football stickers. Or whatever works for your team, but Nick reckons that a successful Agile team takes time out from work to celebrate their successes as well as regularly considering their shortcomings.
Write-up by Eleanor Chambers
The evening ended with the monthly prize draw and drinks in the Midnight Bell. Thanks to all our volunteer team who make the event happen and finally thanks to main sponsors iSource IT, Piksel, Callcredit and NewRedo and to our prize sponsors O'Reilly, JetBRAINS, Manning, Wrox and PluralSight.
See you in July
The Agile Yorkshire Team