Why do, or don’t, organizations adopt agile practices? Vijayasarathy and Turk study this issue in a paper published less than a month ago. They found that perceived norms and training are significant factors in promoting adoption of agile methods. Perceived benefits – such as the fact that TDD really does work – are not as important, unless there are problems, e.g. resistance from management, that prevent adopting agile practices.
I guess you can summarize this as
- If you think you should do it (norm)
- and you know how to do it (training)
then you probably will do it and you will only really consider if it is a good idea (benefits) if someone challenges you (hindrances).
Perhaps this is why we see so many instances where agile practices are adopted, but only in a limited way and in a limited part of the organization?