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What is Agile? Attitude.

By:  Michael Carew, Agile Coach, Hewlett Packard Company


We keep hearing different opinions about what is Agile. Some describe it as a series of processes that can be applied to software development as need be.  Others, more academic, refer to it as a culture, and claim that the culture must be established before any processes can be established, less they prove temporary.


At face value Agile is about rapid feedback to the customer. Cycles are used to create product in small steps that can be shown to the customer so that product direction and status can be confirmed. This is achieved through small teams which are empowered to make decisions and commitments. The Agile Manifesto, agreed to in 2001, helps define what is meant by Agile in more detail. However we need to dig deeper…


Agile graphic - concentric circles.png


Having considered the points about process and culture, and seeing that there is some merit to both, I have a somewhat different view. Agile is attitude

  • We do great things, but we can be even greater
  • We learn lots of stuff, but need to learn more
  • We deliver quality, but must get better
  • We connect with our customers, but need to get closer
  • We establish collaboration as the management method, but need to dialog more
  • We talk the talk, but need to walk the walk
  • We are easy to approach, but must be even friendlier
  • Agile is the way forward, but we must always improve on the self of today

You get the drift; add more in the comments section of this blog if you agree (and even more if you don’t!).


Agile means having the attitude to always look for ways to do thing better than you do now:  delighting customers even more, keeping an eye on value, delivering more as you become even higher performing.


And relax. Agile is meant to be a sustainable process: we should have some fun along the way.


Related links: 


About the Author


Michael Carew - cropped.jpgMichael Carew, Agile Coach, Hewlett Packard Company

Mike joined HP in June 2007 and has focused on introducing and coaching the use of Agile techniques for software development across a variety of projects and engagements.  His most recent assignment is with HP’s Agile Mentoring Office (AMO) and is a champion of Agile and Lean methods within EMEA.  Mike has 35 years of overall experience in the IT industry.

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About the Author
Agile Champion and coach. Passion in software development using lean and agile techniques. Software is a people business!!

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