Archive for 2010/05/12

We are the knights who say [process artifact]

2010/05/12 1 comment

The other day on Agila Sverige, we discussed agile in an environment where Operations have implemented ITIL. The discussion moved to why ITIL is implemented. Operations want a stable production environment and all changes are a risk to that environment. By keeping that gate and requiring all these artifacts, chances are greater that no one just install something which doesn’t work.

Since it was also Monty Python Day, I couldn’t help thinking about this wonderful sketch  and I cannot help but recognizing myself when I’ve tried to get something done. I ask for something and someone shoves a process artifact down my throat. You said what? What did I need to do?

But the next thought was inevitable. How many times have I’ve been that knight who said Nii! in the eyes of a user, wanting some new functionality.

What I said: “No, you will have to wait because there is no product backlog item and the sprint has already started. Get it registered before the next release planning meeting and we can estimate how many story points it will require”

Interpreted as: “No, I won’t let that pass because I want you to bring me a shrubbery before I’ll get it fixed.”

We have all gates and artifacts for a reason but in too many cases we don’t explain this enough or perhaps really know ourselves so instead we just babble out one (or many) of those process artifact names in the face of the one making that requirement.

And the second part of sketch is also so telling. When the stakeholder finally got all that documentation ready in the specified form or formed the requirements as a user story, the process has changed and now they have adapt to that. Imagine all users getting used to scrum vocabulary now having to grasp kanban…

We might all this for a good reason but it is important that it doesn’t feel like everyone need to cut down a tree with a herring too.

Categories: Agile, Kanban, scrum