agile project management 101

Agile Project Management 101


Contents

  1. Agile Introduction
  2. Four Values of Agile Manifesto
  3. Twelve Principles of Agile Manifesto
  4. Traditional Project Management Vs Agile Project Management
  5. Agile Frameworks
    • Iterative Vs Incremental
    • Business Objectives in Agile
    • Agile Roles
      • Lead
      • Team Member
      • Product Owner
      • Stakeholder
    • Key Aspects of Agile Team
    • Product Roadmap
    • Project Lifecycle
      • Phase 1 : Envision
      • Phase 2 : Speculate
      • Phase 3 : Explore
      • Phase 4 : Adapt
  6. Agile Estimation
  7. Agile Planning
  8. Value Based Prioritization
  9. Monitoring and Adoption
  10. Communication and Collaboration
  11. Retrospective
  12. Risk Management
  13. Agile Variants
  14. Stakeholder Engagement
  15. Problem Detection & Resolution
  16. Continuous Improvement
  17. Key Points from Agile Practice Guide
  18. Top Agile Certifications
  19. Guide to Pass PMI ACP Certification Exam
  20. Top Blogs to for Agile
  21. Top 25 Agile Influencers

Introduction to Agile

Agile, a software development methodology, follows an iterative based approach. Instead of delivering a product at once, Agile method follows iterative approach to deliver product on incremental based.

Agile project management follows a process that is provided in Agile Manifesto. Agile Manifesto is based on 12 principles and 4 key values.

“ The ability to create and respond to change in order to succeed in an uncertain and turbulent environment ”Agile Alliance

The 4 values of Agile Manifesto

four values of agile manifesto
  • Individuals and Interactions Over Processes and Tools. …
  • Working Software Over Comprehensive Documentation. …
  • Customer Collaboration Over Contract Negotiation. …
  • Responding to Change Over Following a Plan.

The 12 Principles of Agile Manifesto

12 principles of agile manifesto

What are the Agile Frameworks?

Agile does not recommend any specific framework. It prescribes flexible and collaborative work for incremental delivery of the product.

Some of the most popular Agile frameworks are:

Scrum

Kanban

Extreme Programming

Lean software development

Dynamic Systems Development Method (DSDM)

Feature driven Development

Crystal Methods

Unified Process

Agile frameworks are adaptive in all kind of situations. The vision of the Agile methodology is to develop products in increments and each increments should be tested before it is considered as complete.

Traditional Project Management Vs Agile Project Management

Traditional Agile
Plans and triple constraints focused
Customer value and
Customer satisfaction focused
Breaking the work in activities and
tasks
Breaking the work based on
features
Top down command and control
Participative culture
Participative culture. Empowered,
self-organizing team
Measurement & reporting is largely
based on non value items
Value focused measurement
Scope based deliveryTime boxed delivery
Upfront planningProgressive elaboration
What happens is the
same as what you planned
Inspection and adaptation
Discourage changes late in the
lifecycle
Flexible about changes.
Documentation as key medium More focus on face to face conversation

Iterative Vs Incremental

Most of the Agile variants/frameworks uses both iterative and incremental approach.

Let’s take a paint/drawing as an example.

Iterative approach is creating a base, drawing the picture and then coloring the picture.

Incremental approach is dividing into piece and each piece will go through to base creation, drawing and coloring.

Image source (Gojko Adzic)

Business Objectives in Agile

There are five key objectives in Agile Project Management.

  1. Continuous Innovation
  2. Product Adaptability
  3. Improved Time-to-Market
  4. People and Process Adaptability
  5. Reliable Results

Agile Roles

Lead

The lead role, called as “Scrum Master” in Scrum and Team Coach or Project Lead in other methods. This role is responsible for facilitating the team, obtaining resources for it, and protecting it from problems.

This role has more focus on soft skills and less focus on technical skills.

Team Member

The team member also referred as developer or programmer, responsible for the creation and delivery of a system including modelling, programming, testing and releasing.

Product Owner

The product owner, also referred as on site customer in XP, is one person responsible to prioritize the work (product backlog in scrum), making decisions and providing information in a timely manner.

Stakeholder

Stakeholder is anyone that is potentially affected by the project outcome. Stakeholders don’t participate in day to day development but should be engaged via product manager or team lead.

Key Aspects of Agile Team

  • Typically,8-12 people
  • Self-organizing and empowered
  • Cross functional
  • Team members have mutual trust
  • Close collaboration
  • Members should be full time
  • Committed to developing functionality
  • Continuous adaptation and improvement

Product Roadmap

The product roadmap is a tool for business planning and communication. This provides a high level view of how the customer wants the product to be released.

Image source (Aha)

Project Lifecycle

Each approach has its place, but the lifecycle framework for the one has a very different flavour from the other.

  1. ENVISION
  2. SPECULATE
  3. EXPLORE
  4. ADAPT

Phase 1 : Envision

The Envision phase creates a vision for the product team that covers what, who and how. Without a vision, activities in getting a project off the ground are wasted effort.

  • Team members need to envision what to deliver – Vision and scope of the project.
  • Team members need to envision who will be involved – customers, product managers, team members, and stakeholders
  • Team members need to envision how they intend to work together.

An ultimate purpose of the envision phase is to identify what needs to be done and how it can be accomplished.

Phase 2 : Speculate

The objectives of speculate phase are:

  • Defining the workload of product features as a backlog
  • Creating an iterative, feature-based release plan
  • Incorporating risk mitigation strategies into the plan
  • Estimation of project costs and generating administrative and financial information

In Speculate phase, overall approach to meet the requirements are realized and high level release plan is presented.

Phase 3 : Explore

In the explore phase agile team members explores various alternatives to implement and fulfil the requirements of a project.


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