Agile in Regulated Industries

Agile in regulated industries — could that work? That is the topic of an upcoming webinar. I find this a bit ironic. Can we make Agile not work in regulated industries? Did Agile cause the Ariane V crash or was it “GRC (governance, risk and compliance)” that caused it?

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A Waterfall is Fine – for Watching

As humans we love the majesty of nature. Who can fail to be impressed by such majestic cataracts as the Niagara falls or the Victoria falls? Someone said that falling is fine, it is hitting the ground that kills you. Same thing with the water in the waterfall. When it hits the end, enormous chaos is generated both visibly as spume and invisibly in the water.

Hydroelectric Power

We do not usually try riding a waterfall in a barrel. We can harness it for electric power. But if we do, we certainly do not want to ride it in a barrel.

Agile is also a Waterfall

Laminar versus turbulent flow. Image reused from http://www.ceb.cam.ac.uk/pages/mass-transport.html .

Agile software development methodologies are about breaking the waterfall into safe, manageable steps. The impact is not saved for the end in a big bang delivery. Instead it is taken one step at a time. The water does not flow as chaotically. It is more like a laminar flow.

Waterfall got it right… almost

I am not going to write a lot on waterfall versus agile but… An interesting point that is worth reiterating. Waterfall software development processes can remind us of many of the important steps in software development. The difference is not so much in what we do as in how, when and what order.

You don’t Need User Stories to be Agile

Someone probably told you that you must have user stories to be Agile, right? But really, you don’t need user stories to be agile! I would have you consider what kinds of stakeholders and requirements you have and are trying to meet. Continue reading

Are You Agile?

A snip of the Agile Karlskrona TestSource: Owned by the author

The Agile Karlskrona Test

Are you Agile? Are you doing the “so called” 12 key agile practices? Have you taken the Agile Karlskrona Test? I am going to try it out on a customer today.

12 Key Agile Practices

Which are the key agile practices? Researchers José Fortuna Abrantes and Guilherme Horta Travassos combed the research literature and were able to identify 12 key agile practices: test driven development, continuous integration, pair programming, planning game, onsite customer, collective code ownership, small releases, metaphor, refactoring, sustainable pace, simple design and…

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Waterfall, Agile and the Construction Industry

When people ask me to explain the difference between agile and waterfall methodology I usually give an analogy based on the construction industry: The Construction Industry as “Waterfall Heaven” Construction Site for The Oaks High School Retford   © Copyright B Hilton and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons…

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Podcast on Agile on the Enterprise Level

Here is yet another great installment of the Business 901 podcast. This time on being agile on the enterprise level part 1, part 2. I agree with most of what is said in the podcast, especially that there is no “one size fits all solution“. Different teams have different needs.…

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Where does the information go?

In traditional non-agile project a lot of effort is spent in generating documents in order to achieve coordination, collaboration and communication. In agile software development the main artefacts beside the code are the storyboards. So what happens with all that other stuff? Open university research might have the answer in “
Three ‘c’s of agile practice: collaboration, coordination and communication
“. I have requested a copy and will give more detail when and if I receive it.

Agile Meetings and Motivation

There are three key, recurrent meetings in Agile practice:

Do these meetings contribute to team motivation or de-motivation? According to a recent study “Motivating Agile Teams: A Case Study of Teams in Ireland and Swedenit depends.

Sorry, but I am not going to pay to read any further than the abstract but if someone will donate a copy to me I promise to write about any other sensational findings in the paper.

References

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The Featured Image is taken from Klean Denmark on Flickr and is used under a CC BY SA 2.0 license. It has been slightly cropped.

Image sources