Happy Agile Valentines Day!

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Roses are red

Violets are blue

We’re going agile,

How about you?

It’s 6 weeks into the year and I know at least a handful of you are working for organizations who set a 2015 initiative to transform IT to agile practices. So how’s it going? Given we are 6 weeks into the year, and well, agile transformation should be agile, I hope you are all well underway.

One of our customers is diving in headfirst this week on a new project. He’s drafting a business objectives model, a feature tree, identifying an initial list of user stories, and prioritizing them in a backlog using the business objectives – all while using a new tool for the first time. Will it be perfect? Unlikely – but who cares. He’s trying to see what works and what doesn’t so we can adapt for future sprints and future projects.

Another customer is a bit further along in the transition (about 6 months), but it’s a much bigger organization, so it’s going slower. In this case, we are embedding with a couple teams at a time for about 3 months. While working with them, we are enhancing their requirements work with models and adapting the practices to be more agile. We are doing similar models with this customer, but because we are further along on the projects, we are able to help them with additional models.

Another customer is a couple years into their agile transformation and even bigger still. In their case, they are making a pretty slow transition, but that’s because the entire organization isn’t quite bought into agile. In this case, we are helping load the requirements into the backlog. But they are not ready to let go of the formal documents, so we’ve created a stepping stone document called an “agile requirements document.” We hope one day they abandon the document and go with a real-time, fluid backlog in a tool.

Those are just 3 examples I’ve seen in the last couple of weeks. Each customer has a unique set of needs and challenges, so it’s not surprising each one is taking a slightly different path. In all cases though, they are being agile about their agile transformation.

So on this Valentine’s day (6 weeks in to the year), ask yourself, are you a couple sprints into your agile transformation?

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