Friday, September 28, 2012

Project Management, Agile and the Replacement Refs

An article I read this morning mentioned that now that the regular NFL refs are back on the job the referees have faded into the background and the game itself has taken center stage again.  Relative calm and order have been restored and fans, players and coaches can focus on the product (football) and not the administration of it.

I got to thinking about it and I realized how much that applied to project management on agile projects (I'm referring to organizations, like mine, that are project management centric, rooted in waterfall methodologies, and trying to implement scrum in a move toward agile).

Traditional project management on agile projects, where the focus is primarily on schedules, timelines, budgets, status meetings, resources, timekeeping, etc. etc. is akin to replacement refs in a professional football game - the management of the project is too visible and steals center stage.

So, bring back the regular refs and restore the integrity of agile by making the product itself the center of attention, surrounded by the team member collaborations and customer interactions that comprise the real game of agile and let project management quietly fade into the background where it can unobtrusively maintain calm and order.

Disclaimer: I think the replacement refs were put in a tough position where limited training, high expectations and the speed of the game made their ability to succeed a tough proposition from the very outset. I think the same can be said of traditional project managers on agile projects.

2 comments:

Alexia Marthoon said...

An agile process tends to focus on iterations, and client feedback, to allow for the inevitability of changing requirements whereas a waterfall process tries to define all requirements up front, and tends to be inflexible to changing requirements. You can learn more about agile and scrum by referring to some free resources (http://www.scrumstudy.com/free-resources.asp) provided by scrumstudy or by attending any agile scrum certification courses. I would personally suggest Agile Expert Certified course or a Scrum Master Certification to you.

julia madelyn said...

Very nice article about project management.Really its very helpful.Thanks for sharing such a wonderful article.