Ron Jeffries rocks

Last night I spent some time browsing Ron Jeffries web site. While I've seen a few of the items on Ron's site before, I never really stopped to look through - and boy was that a mistake! It turns out that Ron has a number of very interesting and entertaining articles on his site. I particularly recommend his classics section.

Included in the "classics" is an article entitled We Tried Baseball and It Didn't Work. Unless you're lucky enough to have only ever worked in high-quality organizations, which really, really had their act together, this article will probably ring true on some level. It also nicely sums up a number of Ron's other articles on the use and abuse of the term "Agile".

This kind of reminded me of when my current team first started to "do Scrum". For the first few months, the entire team agreed that it just wasn't working. Of course, we weren't exactly following the book in our application of Scrum: our "stand-up" meetings often lasted 30 to 60 minutes; we didn't always deliver "done-done" software at the end of a sprint; our sprints started at a month long, and when we failed to finish our tasks by then, we pushed the date. So "Scrum wasn't working" for us, if by Scrum you mean "some process that involves a daily meeting." But we had to do Scrum, or come up with some other "Agile" process, because if it's not Agile, then it's not good. I mean, how could all those industry pundits be wrong?

Fortunately, we've figured things out a bit better now. We're much closer to a real Agile process and it's working better for us. Of course, we're not really there yet, but we're making progress. And, really, that's what matters.

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