re: What’s an unpopular software opinion you have? VIEW POST

FULL DISCUSSION
 

Agile and Scrum are dumb. Daily stand-ups, planning poker, scrum masters and all that other stuff is a waste of time, money and office space. So far I'm yet to see this pseudo process help any team that is not good in the first place to get and perform better.

Also Agile is the worst misnomer in the software dev world. There's nothing agile about Agile.

 

They're big business now and command enormous groups and conferences. No matter their merit, they're not going anywhere because people out there sell agile to companies and teams for a living.

 

Daily stand-ups serve the purpose of putting the team on sync. If your team is 3 people in size, then they are ridiculous.

Planning Poker, if done correctly serves a very important purpose as I explain here:

Real Scrum Masters (not a person who used to have the title of project manager) serve the purpose of helping the team organize who does what and taking care of any lack of clarity on the stories.

Scrum is the name that Agile receives when applied to software development. Agile is getting feedback as quickly as possible about the decisions you make. I feel that if anyone works using the alternative, waterfall, then that person is the worst engineer it can be.

 

From my experience a good team keeps themselves in sync naturally. There are tickets/issues, Slack, email, old fashioned p2p talking. There weren't many stand-ups so far, where I learned something interesting or got synced up. Usually it's just a reiteration of the stuff that I already know or something I'll get to know later during the day anyway. People just say what they did or going to do. If it's interesting for me, I already know it, otherwise I don't need to hear it.

I think the team which lacks clarity in stories doesn't need a scrum master, but rather learn more about the product they are building and talk more to their teammates. You don't need an extra freeloader on the team to help with that.

Agile and waterfall are not the only alternatives. I don't have a name for it, but another approach would be a "natural organic team approach" where everyone is just getting their and common shit done, where the communication and planning happen naturally. In the right setting it just works. I've worked in the company, believe it or not, where we had about 40 people working on the product and there was not a single meeting dedicated to project management. We did have meetings, but they were extremely rare, like one in 3 months to announce something serious usually. Like a new future project, or that we're moving to a new building, but not to decide who works on which task. And in that company I and the whole company was amazingly productive, much more productive than in any other agile or process-less company I worked for before or after.

And in that company I and the whole company was amazingly productive, much more productive than in any other agile or process-less company I worked for before or after.

That is the point. You want a reproducible system to make any team productive, not leave it to chance.

IMO introducing this type of agile process IS leaving it to chance, as it has no influence on the result. Something else has to be done to change improve things.

 

What I "love" is when you're in a retrospective and you're asked for ideas that would make things better, but when you state your idea you're shouted down because "that's not agile".

Also, the idea that the amount of effort required is equal amongst developers is nonsense.

 

What Agile are you referring to? The one from the Agile Manifesto? Or the one most companies claim to practice?

 

Since I'm speaking from experience, I'm guessing it's the latter. But who cares about some unicorn in the sky if all we get is the real thing?

One of the first things which goes out of the windows with most companies which adopt a Scrum way of working is the agile part of it. But there are companies which do adhere to the agile manifesto.

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