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Re: [XP] why do people say agile when they mean waterfall

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  • Jonathan Harley
    An associate of mine has the Three Es : Educate, Eradicate, Evacuate. Educate those you can to change the situation. If you still have resisters, try to have
    Message 1 of 8 , Nov 12, 2012
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      An associate of mine has the "Three Es": Educate, Eradicate, Evacuate.

      Educate those you can to change the situation. If you still have
      resisters, try to have them removed from the situation (eradicate).
      Finally, failing the first two, there's nothing else to do but what you
      did..

      I hope the pain of doing so is short-lived.

      Best - Jon

      On Mon, Nov 12, 2012 at 4:00 AM, M. Manca <m.manca@...>wrote:

      > **
      >
      >
      > Il 12/11/2012 08:11, Theresa Jayne Forster ha scritto:
      >
      > >
      > >
      > > So, I just left my last company after only 1 and a half months in the
      > job.
      > >
      > > I was hired as a Senior Developer Agile C#/VB.NET
      > >
      > > So, every day we would have a stand up, where the project manager would
      > > hand out tasks and move stuff on the wall (the only person allowed to
      > > do and
      > > only at the stand up) which would last 15 -30 minutes.
      > >
      > > We had to follow a specific predefined way of doing things and create
      > > copious documentation including Full technical specs for "iteration 4"
      > > that
      > > included complete design specifications with full estimates which will be
      > > used.
      > >
      > > Iteration 4 was just what the company agreed to deliver by the end of the
      > > year, and there was no discussion or input from the development team, The
      > > only people who were at the meeting with the client was the BA/Project
      > > Manager and it sounds like they just nodded their head and did what the
      > > client wanted.
      > >
      > > So my question is,
      > >
      > > Is there anything that can be done to correctly "agile up" a company that
      > > pretends to do agile in this manner?
      > >
      > In my professional life I applied this simple rule: if there is
      > something wrong with the way in which I am asked to work for a company I
      > try to change the way to work, if this is not possible... I simply leave
      > the company (as you did so... well done!).
      >
      > >
      > >
      > > Theresa
      > >
      > > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      > >
      > >
      >
      > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      >
      >
      >


      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Charlie Poole
      Yes, but you have to buy the company first. :-) Charlie On Sun, Nov 11, 2012 at 11:11 PM, Theresa Jayne Forster
      Message 2 of 8 , Nov 12, 2012
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        Yes, but you have to buy the company first. :-)

        Charlie


        On Sun, Nov 11, 2012 at 11:11 PM, Theresa Jayne Forster <
        theresajayne@...> wrote:

        > **
        >
        >
        > So, I just left my last company after only 1 and a half months in the job.
        >
        > I was hired as a Senior Developer Agile C#/VB.NET
        >
        > So, every day we would have a stand up, where the project manager would
        > hand out tasks and move stuff on the wall (the only person allowed to do
        > and
        > only at the stand up) which would last 15 -30 minutes.
        >
        > We had to follow a specific predefined way of doing things and create
        > copious documentation including Full technical specs for "iteration 4" that
        > included complete design specifications with full estimates which will be
        > used.
        >
        > Iteration 4 was just what the company agreed to deliver by the end of the
        > year, and there was no discussion or input from the development team, The
        > only people who were at the meeting with the client was the BA/Project
        > Manager and it sounds like they just nodded their head and did what the
        > client wanted.
        >
        > So my question is,
        >
        > Is there anything that can be done to correctly "agile up" a company that
        > pretends to do agile in this manner?
        >
        > Theresa
        >
        > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        >
        >
        >


        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • Phlip
        On Sun, Nov 11, 2012 at 11:11 PM, Theresa Jayne Forster ... Woah. That s certainly never (cough) happened to me. I m going to write my latest experience up
        Message 3 of 8 , Nov 12, 2012
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          On Sun, Nov 11, 2012 at 11:11 PM, Theresa Jayne Forster
          <theresajayne@...> wrote:

          > So, I just left my last company after only 1 and a half months in the job.

          Woah. That's certainly never (cough) happened to me. I'm going to
          write my latest experience up parallel to yours.

          > I was hired as a Senior Developer Agile C#/VB.NET

          Python + Django (which, by itself, is fall-off-a-log easy). Everyone
          knew better than to call the situation "Agile", but everyone had
          worked very hard - a little TOO hard - to tune and perfect a
          bullet-proof, ultra-high-volume build system. The result worked like
          ...

          http://c2.com/cgi/wiki?BigAgileUpFront

          ... including fun like a 10 minute test run for a very tiny project.

          > So, every day we would have a stand up, where the project manager would
          > hand out tasks and move stuff on the wall (the only person allowed to do and
          > only at the stand up) which would last 15 -30 minutes.

          Right. One point of XP is to provide checks and balances across team &
          individual abilities. And yet even the closest project to XP I ever
          worked screwed up the Planning Game.

          Managers just can't let go of the idea they must dispense orders to
          individual work units. And, of course, managers should inform the work
          units how long they expect each task to take.

          Those attitudes cause unbelievable friction, which some engineers
          handle better than others. Violating the Planning Game, like that,
          divorces Authority from Responsibility.

          > We had to follow a specific predefined way of doing things and create
          > copious documentation including Full technical specs for "iteration 4" that
          > included complete design specifications with full estimates which will be
          > used.

          Right; the burden of producing the specification grows greater than
          actually cutting code. But you are "not allowed" to cut code, because
          you don't have the specification yet. This is another example of
          "illusion of control", where managers think they are helping the code,
          but they are really steeping it in the products of their fears. And,
          of course, some people might be better at coding than e-paperwork.

          In my case, with a recent project, we had a different e-paperwork
          burden. Instead of pair programming, everyone submits code to a
          two-tier system. If everyone reviews the code changes in the first
          tier, it commits to its final home in the second tier.

          If someone dislikes the code in the first tier (or if they just feel
          chatty) they can add notes to it, which email automatically back to
          the author. This review system resembles pairing, except that A> too
          many cooks review the broth, and B> verbal communication is highest
          quality.

          My specific problem was with a manager who insisted on turning the
          slightest misunderstanding into a cascade of redundant, divergent
          lecturing about everything under the sun. This lead to a very
          disturbing "thread mode" in the review system, and made focusing back
          on a winning code solution extremely hard. And, of course, any
          problems the review system caused were just taken as evidence it was
          working, and preventing wayward programming!

          I spent three months at that job writing about 3 features; I've
          written 3x the amount of code (with review, and unit tests, and
          steadily improving design) in about 3 weeks at my current job.

          > Iteration 4 was just what the company agreed to deliver by the end of the
          > year, and there was no discussion or input from the development team, The
          > only people who were at the meeting with the client was the BA/Project
          > Manager and it sounds like they just nodded their head and did what the
          > client wanted.

          The Planning Game - and everything else - are supposed to alleviate
          these dominance issues.

          > Is there anything that can be done to correctly "agile up" a company that
          > pretends to do agile in this manner?

          Like James Grenning said, hitting the silk is a perfectly reasonable
          strategy. Some teams are, indeed, trying. (Like my former colleagues
          certainly were!) And some teams cater to managers with special needs.

          Could you list any agile practices the team was doing, and how well
          they did them? Stuff like TDD, daily deployment, etc?

          --
          Phlip
          http://c2.com/cgi/wiki?ZeekLand
        • strazhce
          Customer s environment has some history. So I would ask why do they use agile terms, how that happened. And have an honest talk about what you expect to be
          Message 4 of 8 , Nov 19, 2012
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            Customer's environment has some history. So I would ask why do they use agile terms, how that happened. And have an honest talk about what you expect to be agile environment when you apply for the job with agile in the title and what you see in reality.

            Remember, It is not your responsibility to change the customer. You were hired for something else. So you can breath freely :-)

            Oleg

            --- In extremeprogramming@yahoogroups.com, "Theresa Jayne Forster" <theresajayne@...> wrote:
            >
            > So, I just left my last company after only 1 and a half months in the job.
            >
            >
            >
            > I was hired as a Senior Developer Agile C#/VB.NET
            >
            >
            >
            > So, every day we would have a stand up, where the project manager would
            > hand out tasks and move stuff on the wall (the only person allowed to do and
            > only at the stand up) which would last 15 -30 minutes.
            >
            >
            >
            > We had to follow a specific predefined way of doing things and create
            > copious documentation including Full technical specs for "iteration 4" that
            > included complete design specifications with full estimates which will be
            > used.
            >
            >
            >
            > Iteration 4 was just what the company agreed to deliver by the end of the
            > year, and there was no discussion or input from the development team, The
            > only people who were at the meeting with the client was the BA/Project
            > Manager and it sounds like they just nodded their head and did what the
            > client wanted.
            >
            >
            >
            > So my question is,
            >
            >
            >
            > Is there anything that can be done to correctly "agile up" a company that
            > pretends to do agile in this manner?
            >
            >
            >
            > Theresa
            >
            >
            >
            > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            >
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