Agile is a group of methodologies and a set of principles, used primarily in project management and software development. Its main idea is an iterative development instead of rigid planning phase by phase.
The Agile is usually described by listing its four values and twelve principles set out in the Agile manifesto. Agile philosophy values “Individuals and interactions over processes and tools, working software over comprehensive documentation, customer collaboration over contract negotiation and responding to change over following a plan”. Agile companies focus on satisfying the customer and delivering the products quickly as well as having motivated teams with strong collaboration between everyone involved in the project.
Nowadays, more and more companies, especially those related to software, human resources, and project management, choose Agile instead of traditional waterfall models. In this article, we are going to overview how Agile approaches can improve company culture.
The very first principle of Agile states that satisfying the customer and continuously delivering working software is the highest priority. Agile companies always look for ways to improve and seek to create the best products possible. They also focus on quick and good delivery instead of detailed documentation or technical aspects. This is why customer satisfaction and product quality is usually very high in Agile companies.
Agile also helps create a consistent pace. Regular meetings and a structure for work completion keep the teams on track, ensuring quick delivery and productivity.
Flexibility is a key Agile value. Everything is developed iteratively: first, a product is created, then discussed by the team and improved. The teams focus on developing a product according to the demand, avoiding overproduction and waste. Even if the demand suddenly changes, it is easy to move to another product. In Agile systems, team members focus on one task at a time. Such systems also allow marking priority tasks and easily change priorities. Therefore, team members can quickly finish their current tasks and tackle the new priority tasks.
Such flexibility also reduces costs. Agile approaches pay close attention to the demand, so there is no overproduction and no scrap. Raw materials are also ordered just for the products produced at the time, which saves storage space and does not lead to waste. Sustainability, which is really important in today’s world, is also one of the Agile principles.
In today’s ever-changing world and market, flexibility is crucial. Inflexible and rigid plans might hamper development and success because of their inability to deal quickly with fast-changing demands and priorities.
Many of the Agile principles focus on teamwork, communication, and collaboration. Agile promotes communication between business people and developers, having motivating team members and regular reflections on improvement.
In Agile companies, team members communicate face-to-face regularly. They do not only report the necessary details but discuss progress and share ideas on improvement. Everyone’s input is valued. Traditionally, employees do not communicate much, just following the orders from the higher-ups, but Agile companies encourage everyone to share ideas. Such communication promotes collaboration, boosts team morale, and in turn increases productivity. When team members feel more connected to their work and workplace, they work better.
How To Introduce Agile To The Company?
Now that you know about the advantages of Agile, you might be thinking about introducing it to your company. Agile encompasses many different methodologies, such as Lean Software Development, Scrum, or Kanban. Often such methodologies are combined. For example, a team might practice Lean and employ Kanban boards such as Teamhood to visualize the workflow. However, they can also be used separately: Kanban boards are often used on their own by companies and individuals alike.
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