Scrum is not agile. I think Scrum is a brilliant and simple framework, but again it’s certainly not agile. It was Allen Holub in his Death of Agile keynote that convinced me of this. Watch for yourself. He makes many excellent points, some I find more agreeable than others.
For frequent readers, I’m sure you already know that I identify as a Scrum Master. It says as much on my business cards, and I love, live, and breathe the Scrum framework. Still, I’ll emphatically tell anyone who will listen that Scrum is not agile, and I cringe every time I see “Agile/Scrum” on a resume or on a LinkedIn profile.
What is Agility?
The easiest way to describe it is contained in the Agile Manifesto, but I prefer something simpler.
Ruthlessly prioritize. Furiously iterate. For both the product and process, never accepting good enough as good enough.
In the words of Ebenezer Ikonne, “Small bites. Chew fast.”
Agile is a mindset. It’s a way of being and a way of behaving. It manifests itself through our actions. Agilists deliver something unpolished and unfinished frequently. We understand that it’s difficult for a customer to translate their mind’s eye into word. We deliver this unfinished product to our customers to inspire a conversation about what they truly want. Usually, these conversations inform and transform their vision, and by way of our incremental deliveries, we create a better product.