Agile failure modes and alternatives

avril 22, 2018

Agile failure modes and alternatives

  • Agile practices don’t fail—rather the variations on Agile adoption fail”.
  • What NOT to do while following certain practices in agile.
  • There is no term like 99% agile. You are 100% agile or you are not

– Check book commitment doesn’t support organizational change management.

CEOs create within the company their own personal family dysfunction.

– Culture doesn’t support change.

Reward plan, and a static and prescriptive standard of work.

Try to keep cross-organizational uniformity and use PMO as enforcers.

– Do not have retrospectives, or they are bad.

Actions which come out get ignored or written off.

– In a race to finish features, the infrastructure gets worse and architecture becomes unstable.

Distributed teams make this worse.

– Lack of collaboration in planning.

Like having the whole team for release planning.

– None or too many Product Owners. Both cases look the same.

Agile is yet another hat to wear and the person is already too busy.

They check out and ask the team to just do Agile.

Can’t get past the ‘this sucks’ phase of adoption if the business is not bought in.

– Bad Scrum Master which uses a command and control style with the team to look faster, yet in reality slows things


Low morale lowers IQ.

Take decisions away and it actually makes people stupider!

– No on-site evangelist.

If the teams are distributed, need one at every site.

Can’t reap the benefits of Agile or offshore without an on-site coach at each location.

No solid team. Actually missed this one, inferred. Empowered teams amplify learning.

– Tsunami of technical debt if don’t pull tests forward.

– Traditional performance appraisals.

Individual heroics rewarded, glad you’re not a team player!

– Revert to traditional.

Change is hard.

Hit the threshold where this sucks.

Revert back to old ways of doing business.


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