Wednesday, February 11, 2015

CMMI-TV: How Disciplined Is Agile?

Hey, CMMI Appraiser – how disciplined is agile? ~ SEPG NA Attendee

Dear Readers,

Today’s episode of CMMI-TV was filmed ON LOCATION at the most recent SEPG North America in Tyson’s Corner, Virginia, where I delivered the keynote address on “Values-based Engineering.” Before I gave the presentation, I heard people scoffing at the notion that agile was a disciplined approach. I heard them say, “Oh, we’re agile. We don’t do this.” Or, “Oh, we’re agile. We don’t do that.” Below is a video clip with my response, followed by a synopsis. Enjoy!


A lot of people don’t realize that agile is incredibly structured, detailed and disciplined.


Agile is not less
disciplined than what we call
Stop it!


Agile isn’t just disciplined, it’s extraordinarily disciplined! Proof is available in the well run Scrum Team Room, where you see information radiators everywhere, with extraordinary amounts of detail. For example, you’ll see white boards covered with sticky notes, with risks identified and carefully prioritized (‘what keeps you up at night’) with their sources associated with them.


Even better than its high level of discipline, Agile is incredibly organized with specified behaviors. Contrast this with the Waterfall world, where there are no specified behaviors. Instead, Waterfall has phases, work products and artifacts. Work gets done and there are plans – but Waterfall really doesn’t guide us to focus on the behavioral aspect of our work. Scrum is completely focused on the behavioral aspects, and CMMI helps guide Scrum Teams to strengthen those agile behaviors. The way it meshes seamlessly with Scrum demonstrates that CMMI is a behavioral model more than anything else.


One thing you have to love about Scrum is that it defines all of the behaviors, and we can improve them.

If you would like more information about using getting CMMI and Scrum to work together, to strengthen agile, you are invited to participate in our upcoming Webinar: “Agile Resiliency – Scaling Agile so that It Thrives and Survives,” on February 12, 2015 @ noon EST.

Register here.

CMMI-TV is the free video series with the answers you’re looking for about Agile, CMMI and Performance Innovation. As a subscriber, you’ll be notified when we add new episodes to CMMI-TV and you’ll get links to other premium content, as well. Sign up here.

Like this blog? Forward to your nearest engineering or software exec!

Jeff Dalton is a Certified SCAMPI Lead Appraiser, Certified CMMI Instructor, author, and consultant with years of real-world experience with the CMMI in all types of organizations. Jeff has taught thousands of students in CMMI trainings and has received an aggregate satisfaction score of 4.97 out of 5 from his students.

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