One of the key questions we face time after time is ‘Why would I want a methodology?’ The question is usually posed in such a way that you can almost hear the thought process going on behind it:
- Isn’t methodology just another bureaucratic nightmare?
- Isn’t the whole idea of a written methodology the very opposite of Agile?
- Won’t a formal methodology make us rigid?
- Isn’t methodology just another cost?
Unsurprisingly, having observed the value of a well defined, well managed methodology in many organisations over literally decades, we don’t agree. In fact we can pile up the benefits from having a well defined methodology till the cows come home. Here are just a few – there really are literally dozens more!
- A good methodology is a shared roadmap for delivery – great for modelling, steering, tracking and – best of all – achieving
- A good methodology facilitates team collaboration by making sure the whole team agrees on what Agile actually is.
- A good methodology supports the Scrum Master/Lead’s primary responsibility – to keep the team aligned to core Agile values, principles & practices. Still more importantly, it does it even when the Scrum Master/Lead’s isn’t there.
- A good methodology truly empowers the whole team – putting a mass of in-depth Agile knowledge, skill, experience & tools at everyone’s fingertips. And because it’s shared by all, it provides a solid basis for collaboration.
- A good methodology answers the hundreds – maybe thousands – of questions that surround even a simple Agile project. It’s like having a great coach by your side – only 24/7/365.
- A good methodology provides a comprehensive to-do list for those moments when you can only remember half of what needs to be done.
- Like the brakes on your car, knowing the risks & issues of delivery helps you go faster. So a good methodology identifies the critical risks & issues.
- A good methodology builds a secure foundation for scaling Agile – experts in scaling routinely rate shared processes & practices among their Top Tips for success.
- A good methodology helps you build your team? Whether you’re on-boarding new people or have Agile newbies to train – no problem: just point to the methodology & say, ‘This is how we do Agile’.
- A good methodology helps you climb the learning curve really fast. You won’t need to be constantly telling your team what to do next – or how to do it – because the methodology will do that for you.
- A good methodology makes sure you don’t fall back! The pressures on an Agile team can be immense & unforgiving. A methodology makes sure you’re never tempted to fall back into bad old ways.
If this doesn’t persuade you to at least think about implementing an Agile methodology, well…