Agile: First Impressions

Salmon Sashimi

Salmon Sashimi; posted to Flickr by Kent Wang

We reached the end of our first mini-sprint; mini as it was a week long instead of the standard month. There were three main positives that came out of the exercise

  • The team delivered the requirements that the product owner most wanted
  • The product owner – and his boss – were delighted
  • The concept of sashimi (anything that is delivered in a sprint is of sufficient quality to be shipped) meant that the developers focused on delivering working code. Often developers feel like there is an infinite list of requirements and no way of ever meeting them all. This means that there’s very little point putting in extra effort because the impact you can have is negligible. Sashimi means that you commit to deliver one thing that is working – which is achievable – so I found developers that usually would be by the door, pass card in hand, as if waiting for the school bell, at 5:29 were staying at their desks until they’d delivered working code.

I had anticipated happy customers and working code but not an increase in motivation. It would be worth adopting Agile methods for the increased motivation alone.

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