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155982[XP] Re: A trend in career creation?

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  • Kay
    Nov 8, 2010
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      Hi, Chris,

      Sorry for the delay in responding.

      --- In extremeprogramming@yahoogroups.com, Chris Wheeler <christopher.wheeler@...> wrote:
      > On Wed, Nov 3, 2010 at 4:09 PM, Kay <tranzpupy@...> wrote:
      > >
      > > Are you noticing the "soft titles" because you're hiring? Or for some
      > > other reason?
      > >
      > Not because I'm hiring. Though I don't actively participate in software
      > development anymore, I do check in on the 'state of the art' from time to
      > time, with agile/xp holding a special place in my heart. Checking in,
      > informally, from time to time, gives me different perspective than when I
      > used to be in the thick of it all; I can see how the field is moving now,
      > better than I could before.

      Yes, I had much the same experience when I was taking care of my 92-year-old aunt... I got a different experience of the whole extreme programing / agile concept.

      > >
      > > I'm curious why the titles bother you? Is it because it looks to you like
      > > they have no *real* hard skills? Or another reason?
      > >
      > Fair question. It's a mix of things. I feel as though some have not taken
      > the time to acquire the hard skills necessary to work on an actual XP/Agile
      > team. For me, and this is my own problem, I suppose, acquiring some time in
      > the trench makes one seem more legitimate as a practitioner. Perhaps it's
      > because I acquired my own skills working on agile teams in the olden days.
      > Maybe there is a better way to do it nowadays.
      > I could get past the hard skills thing if there was real evidence that the
      > practitioners were true 'change agents'. When one works on an agile team,
      > you definitely feel differently, the environment is different, you act
      > differently, you feel more productive, more alive. However, experiencing
      > that doesn't make one an expert at creating that type of setting. Nor does
      > it make one an expert at changing corporate culture. I dare say that one
      > can't coach a team and truthfully call oneself a change agent unless that
      > person has spent a considerable amount of time making change happen, and can
      > point to the change that has happened.

      Thank you for telling me this.

      > What I think happens is that, as people are exposed to Agile/XP, they see
      > the soft side and say 'Hey, I can do that', without actually knowing what
      > 'that' entails. And then they give themselves a fancy title, sort of like
      > 'Community ChangeMaster Agent', use some fluffy 'I empower teams to change'
      > words, and away they go!
      > I guess, too, I see my beloved Agile/XP graduating into that realm where
      > everyone who's every seen a unit test gets to hang their own shingle,
      > without really knowing what they are doing or without having an appreciation
      > for how hard 'change' can be, and without realizing that companies don't
      > explicitly want change, they explicitly want results.
      > So, somewhere in that ramble, I hope I've explained my annoyance.

      Yes, you definitely did. I agree on the growing fuzzyness of agile...
      That worries me, too.

      Incidentally, I don't claim to be an "change agent" by any other name. I'm a VB.Net programmer (nowadays, that's being a C# programmer, too) who just wants to work, just wants to create software, and would love to work on an XP team...

      Kay P
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