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Scrum is not Agile

Scrum is not Agile

Fear me not, what i mean is best written this way: « Scrum != Agile ». Yes, Scrum is one of the most used frameworks used over the agile mindset. But it’s definitely not THE ONLY way!

I really enjoy the Agile way I’m proud to defend it. I try to apply the principles of Agile in my work but I’m usually bored and pissed off by some « Agile Coach » out there that keeps telling me that I’m wrong and that I should follow their methodologies, their technics, … It’s always « really interesting » when someone who has never worked in software development as a dev or as a project manager starts telling you that their methods are the best ones.

I’m constantly debating with peoples that you don’t have to do Sprint to be Agile nor express estimations as T-shirt sizes. I’ve never really understood why I was always upset speaking with lots of Agile coaches or managers who are self claimed « Agile ». But recently, I assisted an « Agile training ». The objective was to discover Agile and how it helps in your every day as a developer or consultant in IT. The first fives minutes was around the Agile Manifestodescribing the four values of it. A small note around the last sentence was made but not really express as it should (my thought). And it started !

  • Drawing flowers and sun on a white board …
  • Definition of daily meeting, velocity, user stories, Sprint planning …
  • Definition of the PO, DEV and SM …

The remaining 110 minutes were only about what (after an hour) the « coach » called SCRUM !

Absolutely no mention of other methodologies nor the twelve principles behind the Manifesto was given. Everything happen as if SCRUM is the only way to be AGILE. I didn’t realize this during the training as the coach was quite a good speaker and knew how to retain attention and spread his message. It’s only when i came back home to try to digest what I’ve learned during the session that I realized that I was fooled. NO, there is not only SCRUM or SAFe in the AGILE way of working and NO, SCRUM is not a methodology where you have to strictly follow the manual !

I’m not against SCRUM or the agile coaches but please be really precise when you try to diffuse knowledge. Developing web application is not only writing JavaScript code, UX is not only using Photoshop or working with data is not only writing SQL code.

So please, if you are an agile coach and you are bored with all these developers, project leader or managers that continuously tell you to fuck off with your AGILE things, please reconsider what AGILE is for you and how you spread your message. Maybe you are a super SCRUM Evangelist (but don’t claim it’s the only way for AGILE!). And please stop drawing flowers, playing cards or more generally treat us as children when explaining Agile. It’s not a game, it’s work!

ps: Yes I’m pissed, and this post is maybe not really constructive but it reflects my own experience and I’ll be happy to discuss with both Coaches and Devs about their feelings. (We need each other !)

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