I’m going to make a bit of a radical proposal here. I propose that we add the following to the Agile Manifesto:
We value interpersonal skills over technical knowledge
I’m not really proposing that we change the manifesto. I’m also not stating that technical knowledge is not extremely important. Remember that the Agile Manifesto states that we value the things on the left more than the right, but we still value the things on the right. I’m just making a point that I think a lot of organizations miss that affects their ability to really get the most out of Agile and Scrum.
Historically the Business Analyst position has been a grab-bag of roles. In some organizations the position is effectively a power user who has expertise in one or two systems and is responsible for analyzing and delivering service requests for those systems. In other organizations the analyst is nothing more than a scribe, responsible for recording meetings and completing documentation. Still more are pure business experts who act as subject matter experts as a proxy for the business.
The founding of the the IIBA 9 years ago started to resolve this problem, just as the creation of the PMI helped define and standardize the project manager position and activities. However, Continue reading
(Originally posted here December 2, 2011)
I started re-reading Agile Project Management with Scrum by Ken Schwaber a few days ago, after not having looked at it in far too long. I was struck by the similarities between Schwaber’s view on the complexities of software development and the concepts of Complex Systems Theory I recently read while helping someone do research for a paper. I have to think that Schwaber and the other founders of Scrum were at least partly inspired by it.
Complex Systems Theory is, not surprisingly, difficult to describe in a nutshell. Continue reading