10 lessons about agile from a non-agile person

As a leader, I'm always looking for new ways to improve the way I lead, the way our projects are run, and the way I can optimise our business. When agile was introduced into a more mainstream business audience, I was one of them - I saw the potential for the values and principles to work for all types of businesses, not just software development.

Since then many years have passed and after being exposed to and in the bowels of all forms of agile mindsets converted into approaches (e.g. Scrum, SAFE, etc.), I've learnt a few things - some good and some bad. I've distilled it to 10 lessons I've learnt about agile, all coming from a non-agile practitioner.


Outline/Structure of the Talk

  • From software to mainstream
  • The "hype" of agile
  • Lesson 1: Agile time - a different concept of "time"
  • Lesson 2: Traditional funding models don't work with agile
  • Lesson 3: Backlog is a never-ending "to-do" list
  • Lesson 4: No one knows what "done" means
  • Lesson 5: Product Owners need "product" training
  • Lesson 6: Practitioners should re-read the manifesto
  • Lesson 7: Moving cards quicker isn't always good
  • Lesson 8: Outcome trumps process
  • Lesson 9: Agile is more about people management than task management
  • Lesson 10: Agile doesn't work if the customer isn't involved

Learning Outcome

The aim is for the audience to walk away understanding that all the discussions and innovation on how to improve the agile mindset and the associated approaches on how to use methods aligned to agile (e.g. Scrum) need to sometimes stop, take a step back, and ask people who have been through it who have not gone through any agile certification what they think about it and how it can be improved. This is my take on the things I've found about agile after being in a dozen projects run with scrum and also employing an agile coach just so that I can understand how it can be used for my own company.

Target Audience

Executives (CxO, Founders), Business and Technology Leaders, Change Agents, VP/Director level Product & Technology Leaders, Product Owners and Designers.

schedule Submitted 1 year ago

Public Feedback

comment Suggest improvements to the Author
  • Deepti Tomar
    By Deepti Tomar  ~  1 year ago
    reply Reply

    Hello Saiful,

    Thanks for your proposal!

    Request you to update the links to slides, videos from past presentations, blogs/articles/references related to the proposal and also add time-wise break-up of topics in the Outline/Structure session of the proposal. This will help the program committee to make an informed decision.

    Also, please read the review criteria to ensure completeness of the form.



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