I’ve been noticing posts, comments and tweets about agile recently where people are being incredibly derogatory and negative. Almost to the point where their comments are bordering on offensive. The trouble is most of these people openly admit they have never actually worked in an agile environment. So what gives?You know what I think? I think agile scares some people. I think they worry that they won’t have a job, that their role will change so much they can’t cope and that maybe, they will be exposed as a tester who is not capable of testing. Harsh, but even a well known testing presenter (who shall remain nameless) identified that this often happened when teams make the transition to agile. The move to agile identified those who are “not so good”. I’ve been talking a lot about agile recently because for me the turning point in my career came when I started on an agile project. At first I hated it.
Then I quite liked it.
Then my passion for testing was re-ignited and I started to really thrive in an agile environment. Agile put me back in the zone. It cut out the bureaucracy, the admin side of test artifacts and left me (and the team) in control of creating great software. And this scares many teams. What? Us in control? Really? Are you sure? But how will we cope? What do we do when? Eh? You want us to create our own structure? Are you mad? And hence many teams flounder, fumble and stumble back to traditional ways of working. I remember my first agile project and the first “kick off” meeting. It was an eye opener. It terrified me. I couldn’t believe people worked this way. Before the meeting I read the agile manifesto, I read the scrum alliance website, I read some books and I read some blogs. I didn’t understand it at first, so I rewound and read it again until my brain hurt. And I still didn’t get it. It still didn’t make much sense. Theoretically it sounded fab. In reality though, how could it work? In that first meeting I was informed by the Tech Lead that the UI would be the design and that we don’t need to worry too much about the requirements (backlog). Seriously? No design? No planning? I believe I gave the same look my careers adviser gave me when I told him I wanted to be a ventriloquist (thanks Seinfeld for the joke). I almost choked with rage. From that point on though it started to make sense. And more importantly, it started to really work. I started to feel passionate about delivering software again. My job felt meaningful. We rolled out software….fast (and to top notch quality). To sum up why though, here’s four reasons why I believe adopting an agile mindset will help you re-ignite your passion for creating fab software (I also included the slide). Agile gives you: