Agile Is Not The Goal

Or is it?

Ok, it isn’t but I’m tired of reading posts or comments via various outlets that try to remind us that business agility  (or whatever) is THE goal and Agile is not.  While there is truth in that, I believe that such statements lead to the proverbial baby being thrown out with the bath water and we end up with faux Agile – afterall it isn’t THE goal is it?

I play the piano.  I’m in the middle of learning a jazz arrangement of “Georgia” and I have THE goal of peforming the piece by the end of the year.  Let me repeat, THE goal is to be able to perform the piece by the end of the year. In order to achieve THE goal, I actually came up with a goal of practicing the piece daily.  (This goal has basically led me to get up at 4am for the past couple of days to practice).  If I don’t meet the goal of practicing daily, THE goal of playing “Georgia” by year end is in jeopardy. Practicing daily is a goal I have to meet if I want to achieve THE goal. It’s that simple.  Now it’s really easy to making practicing daily THE goal and lose sight of the original goal.  If I do that, I probably won’t be performing “Georgia” at the end of the year as well.  So I recognize that “practicing daily” is a goal I set to help me achieve THE goal of performing the piece at the end of year and ensure that my daily practices help me get closer to THE goal.

If you believe Agile (as in Agile Manifesto Agile) will help you achieve THE goal (whatever your goals are), then employ Agile (as a goal) such that it helps you achieve THE goal.  If you don’t think it will help you achieve THE goal, don’t use it.  It’s that simple.

Or is it?


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