Customers Take Notice – Agile works when executed correctly

The litany of poor project delivery continues.  Yes these are poster children of the Agile and Lean ways of producing solutions.  Some agile does fail, but hopefully sooner.  Those that do fail can be tracked to poor execution of the foundation tenets of Inspection, Adaptation and Transparency and then others around these.  Others fail for good reasons!

The most recent grievous example of traditional delivery failing is ObamaCare (  In this story on Jeff Sutherland’s site we have a link to a Time Magazine article that is bringing Agile into the public domain even more.  Over the years there have been a number of high profile fix up jobs saved by Agile (FBI Sentinel, Medco are a couple).  I have my own as well but on a smaller scale, which I’d rather not go into detail here 🙂

One’s journey into Agile isn’t easy, but the costs of that journey are well worth it compared to the monumental waste created by traditional project delivery.

All customers need to take notice.  Some vendors don’t mind if you want traditional delivery – quarterly reports will look good for a good stretch.  Some vendors encourage Agile Delivery, don’t reject that, take a deep breath and take the plunge.  If your vendor is weak in Agility bring in outside experts to help the process work.  Politicians should be directing their government departments to go Agile.  Vendors should take a long term view and deliver quality to keep customers on board so winning the next tender is that much easier.  Paraphrasing Capers Jones , quality costs less in total cost of ownership.

The time for complaining about Agile (and Lean), wondering about what it about, is over.  Get into the books, take a course, join a user group.  Try using Kanban to ease in change.  Please do not react from ignorance if your knowledge is weak – find out more.

I firmly believe that the problems of traditional management (like Stephen Denning is talking about) can be alleviated by Agility.   Join in and help us continue to improve.  We are all still human and prone to our frailties, but lets recognize this and get on with it.  We’d like to avoid the waste, pain and litigation of the Queensland Health Payroll debacle.


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