Unlike Todd who is this blog’s main Agile expert, I’m pretty new to agile. I’ve gone through the typical training (CSPO) and all the other good stuff, so I’m drinking the Kool-aid. But I thought I would provide my perspective, now that I’ve been working in an Agile shop for a while and tell you what I think really sucks. I’ve read lots of warnings why Agile can fail and I’ve tried to stay focused on overcoming the hurdles.
Being a product manager, one of the things that is really ringing true to me is where Agile falls flat–working remotely. Lots of discussions on how much it can suck here, here, here and here. As part of my job, I travel… lots. If I’m not at a customer meeting I’m at the next trade show. This means many design and planning meetings are done remotely. I end up finding we have developed something different than what was originally discussed or at least what I thought.
This gets frustrating because it has a major impact — all of a sudden as opposed to having that working functionality at the end of the iteration, you are set back by redoing that same work the very next iteration. About as productive as watching every single sport of the Winter Olympics (I don’t even like figure skating…I swear).
As much as I’m puking all over Agile, I’m still very invested (messy as it is). Let’s face it, offshore development is a way of life and there are many things people are using to work in this remote context. Next week I’ll post the opposite side of things and discuss the consequences of working remotely along with the value Agile does give you.