Living with an #Agile Teenager

As Agile moves into its teenage years, it is remarkable how the behavior of Agile has taken on some of the characteristics of a typical teenager. I must admit the genus of this blog idea was generated by this article published in Agile Connection.

In addition to the great insights provided in the article, it occurred to me that there are several other similarities that were not mentioned.

1) Parents are dumb – the Agile teenager really believes that they know best as to how projects should be delivered. Traditional parents that delivered Software Development projects for the last 50+ years are not cool and their processes and procedures are dumb. While many of these observations may be true, the Agile teenager should be careful not to throw out all the knowledge gained by their parents previously. Some of that stuff actually worked.

2) Gangs are cool – the Agile teenager really believes that belonging is one of the most important things. Not only do they expend considerable effort labeling people as Agile (Cool) or not Agile (uncool), there also are cliques within Agile that group people together. (Scrum, XP, SAFe, DAD, etc…) Many of these cliques only socialize within their groups and very rarely do Agile teenagers move between the cliques. Once you are in, you find it hard to get out!

3) Agile in the basement – the Agile teenager wants the freedom to do whatever they want, but still be within the safety of the parent’s budget. Agile still hasn’t come to grips of how to expand its processes fully out to the business and focuses more just on the Software Development processes. The parents still need to provide the house/project budget and the Agile teenager wants the autonomy to determine how to best spend that budget. The Agile teenager is starting to understand the complexities of the total environment, but in many ways the Agile teenager has still not moved out from home.

4) Agile falls in love hard – the Agile teenager is constantly looking for acceptance and as such can fall in love very fast and very hard. The Agile teenager falls in love with ideas and with every ideas they believe that this is ‘THE’ one. Undoubtedly, the idea breaks their heart and the Agile teenager moves on to the next suitor. The Agile teenager is starting to become more critical in looking at new ideas and new loves, but is still learning.

and the best one

5) Agile isn’t scared or hesitant – unlike the Agile teenager’s parents, the Agile teenager isn’t scared or hesitant to try new things. The Agile teenager’s parent advises them that certain things are dangerous or dead ends, but the Agile teenager doesn’t listen and continues on to experiment and adapt. This is the Agile teenager’s strength as they haven’t yet become complacent and defeated and still strives for improving every single day.

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