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Re: In search of the waterfall.

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  • petriheiramo
    ... This is exactly the reason why I currently don t introduce Agility through practices, but by introducing the thinking behind it all. One of the key slides
    Message 1 of 14 , Feb 1, 2007
      --- In scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com, "Mike Sutton"
      <mike.sutton@...> wrote:

      > having recently been on a scrum master workshop and experienced the
      > revelation that is scrum, I could help but notice just how many people
      > who attended this workshop didn't 'get' it. After years of being told
      > what to do, how to do it and when to do it by, many of the attendees
      > were with an agile doctor looking for a waterfall prescription.

      This is exactly the reason why I currently don't introduce Agility
      through practices, but by introducing the thinking behind it all. One
      of the key slides is about waterfall mindset specifically.

      > Does anyone have anything to add to this and perhaps experiences of
      > scrums which have been chucked over the waterfall?

      We made the same mistake in the beginning. Low quality is the first
      symptom. Testing doesn't get enough time and things don't get "Done".
      I believe, like already suggested in other responses, that it's very
      difficult to get it right the first time (it took me a long time to
      "get it" and even then it had to be pointed out by an outside
      consultant), but acknowledging it is the first step. After that, new
      teams just have to practice it to get it right. Even then, it may be
      very difficult to abolish phases altogether, since there are logical
      events that do follow each other (such as, you have to get a feature
      "Done" before you can release it).

      Abolishing waterfall is not the end; it's the means to the greater
      goal of creating business value effectively (I'm almost quoting
      another ongoing thread :).


      Yours,


      Petri Heiramo

      Process Improvement Manager
      SysOpen Digia Plc / Telecommunications
      Hämeentie 135 A, FIN-00560 Helsinki, Finland
      petri.heiramo@... / +358-40-7092 526
    • Oldfield, Paul (ASPIRE)
      (responding to Petri, Mike) ... I m one of those folk who needs to understand the thinking behind it all, but over the years I ve come to realise there are
      Message 2 of 14 , Feb 1, 2007
        (responding to Petri, Mike)

        > This is exactly the reason why I currently don't
        > introduce Agility through practices, but by
        > introducing the thinking behind it all. One of the
        > key slides is about waterfall mindset specifically.

        I'm one of those folk who needs to understand the
        thinking behind it all, but over the years I've come
        to realise there are also folk who learn better by
        just doing it. As in many other things we deal
        with, I think there is no "one size fits all" here.

        Paul Oldfield


        ===========================================================
        Our e-mail domain has now changed from iraspire.com to hmrcaspire.com. Please update your address books.
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      • Adrian Howard
        On 1 Feb 2007, at 11:31, petriheiramo wrote: [snip] ... [snip] Curiously enough I find introduction through practices via the address-the-most-pain first
        Message 3 of 14 , Feb 1, 2007
          On 1 Feb 2007, at 11:31, petriheiramo wrote:
          [snip]
          > This is exactly the reason why I currently don't introduce Agility
          > through practices, but by introducing the thinking behind it all. One
          > of the key slides is about waterfall mindset specifically.
          [snip]

          Curiously enough I find introduction through practices via the
          address-the-most-pain first method my most effective technique when
          introducing agile :-)

          Adrian
        • petriheiramo
          ... Very true. But, to borrow wisdom from Edward de Bono, you have to have named-ideas before you can really apply them to practice. So while it s impossible
          Message 4 of 14 , Feb 1, 2007
            --- In scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com, "Oldfield, Paul \(ASPIRE\)"
            <Paul.Oldfield@...> wrote:
            >
            > (responding to Petri, Mike)
            >
            > > This is exactly the reason why I currently don't
            > > introduce Agility through practices, but by
            > > introducing the thinking behind it all. One of the
            > > key slides is about waterfall mindset specifically.
            >
            > I'm one of those folk who needs to understand the
            > thinking behind it all, but over the years I've come
            > to realise there are also folk who learn better by
            > just doing it. As in many other things we deal
            > with, I think there is no "one size fits all" here.

            Very true. But, to borrow wisdom from Edward de Bono, you have to have
            "named-ideas" before you can really apply them to practice. So while
            it's impossible to teach people how to be Agile by mere teaching, they
            need those named-ideas (like "mini-waterfalls" and that they're bad)
            in order to apply it to practice. When training actual project teams,
            I cover the thinking very quickly and dive into practice, too. It
            takes a lot of talk to replace a two-hour hands-on Agile project
            estimation workshop. :)


            Petri Heiramo

            Process Improvement Manager
            SysOpen Digia Plc / Telecommunications
            Hämeentie 135 A, FIN-00560 Helsinki, Finland
            petri.heiramo@... / +358-40-7092 526
          • Graeme Matthew
            Petri Get approval. Pick a project, ensure you have a team that is fully committed to the agile mindset, prove it, let the business market its success and I am
            Message 5 of 14 , Feb 1, 2007
              Petri

              Get approval. Pick a project, ensure you have a team that is fully
              committed to the agile mindset, prove it, let the business market its
              success and I am sure that people will say I want a piece of that. I
              strongly believe that many people are risk averse, why change, but if
              they see it work they are very quick to grab some of it :-)) It takes a
              few people to make the change and take the risk.

              If you believe in De Bono, look at Pratical Thinking, pg 130

              No Escape:

              "The idea is so absolutely right that everyone must work towards it.
              Lack of acceptance of the idea can only be due to ignorance, stupidity
              or bad will"

              Who wants to be seen as ignorant?
              Who wants to be seen as stupid?
              Who wants , no matter what the politics wants to be seen as bad will?

              now if you execute and prove its not an idea it is fact , who would say no?

              Regards

              Graeme







              petriheiramo wrote:
              >
              > --- In scrumdevelopment@yahoogroups.com
              > <mailto:scrumdevelopment%40yahoogroups.com>, "Oldfield, Paul \(ASPIRE\)"
              > <Paul.Oldfield@...> wrote:
              > >
              > > (responding to Petri, Mike)
              > >
              > > > This is exactly the reason why I currently don't
              > > > introduce Agility through practices, but by
              > > > introducing the thinking behind it all. One of the
              > > > key slides is about waterfall mindset specifically.
              > >
              > > I'm one of those folk who needs to understand the
              > > thinking behind it all, but over the years I've come
              > > to realise there are also folk who learn better by
              > > just doing it. As in many other things we deal
              > > with, I think there is no "one size fits all" here.
              >
              > Very true. But, to borrow wisdom from Edward de Bono, you have to have
              > "named-ideas" before you can really apply them to practice. So while
              > it's impossible to teach people how to be Agile by mere teaching, they
              > need those named-ideas (like "mini-waterfalls" and that they're bad)
              > in order to apply it to practice. When training actual project teams,
              > I cover the thinking very quickly and dive into practice, too. It
              > takes a lot of talk to replace a two-hour hands-on Agile project
              > estimation workshop. :)
              >
              > Petri Heiramo
              >
              > Process Improvement Manager
              > SysOpen Digia Plc / Telecommunications
              > Hämeentie 135 A, FIN-00560 Helsinki, Finland
              > petri.heiramo@...
              > <mailto:petri.heiramo%40sysopendigia.com> / +358-40-7092 526
              >
              >
            • petriheiramo
              Hi Graeme, ... I have already received that approval in my division, and I ve got a sample of successes :). I don t have to prove them in my part of the
              Message 6 of 14 , Feb 2, 2007
                Hi Graeme,


                > Get approval. Pick a project, ensure you have a team that is fully
                > committed to the agile mindset, prove it, let the business market its
                > success and I am sure that people will say I want a piece of that. I
                > strongly believe that many people are risk averse, why change, but if
                > they see it work they are very quick to grab some of it :-)) It takes a
                > few people to make the change and take the risk.

                I have already received that approval in my division, and I've got a
                sample of successes :). I don't have to prove them in my part of the
                organization anymore, just get people to understand the results and
                how to apply it in their work (ie. start their own Scrum project, or
                convert into one). That's where I need them to understand the thinking
                as well.

                But I also need to carry the torch to other parts of the organization.
                They work in a different kind of software development business and
                while there are many equalities between the work in the divisions,
                there are some very significant differences, primarily in the customer
                world. So merely showing success in our division is not enough
                (especially when it's difficult to show it in big numbers), I have to
                be able to give them ideas how they can get them in their world.

                So I'm going in through all fronts. First get them to understand the
                ideas of Agility, then show that we've had great results and people
                are happy with it, and then go in and work the miracles with them. :)
                It's still a long road ahead, but I'm very optimistic.

                > If you believe in De Bono, look at Pratical Thinking, pg 130
                >
                > No Escape:
                >
                > "The idea is so absolutely right that everyone must work towards it.
                > Lack of acceptance of the idea can only be due to ignorance, stupidity
                > or bad will"
                >
                > Who wants to be seen as ignorant?
                > Who wants to be seen as stupid?
                > Who wants , no matter what the politics wants to be seen as bad will?
                >
                > now if you execute and prove its not an idea it is fact , who would
                say no?

                I agree, but people firm in their opinion will often still defend
                their opinion (see Practical Thinking, p. 88 - 92). They either claim
                that I don't have the whole picture (yes, it's nice it works for you,
                but we have this and that, and it won't work here the same) or they
                are "arrogant" and shut out the possibilities to avoid confronting the
                change.

                Luckily, I'm getting positive feedback on the ideas and I think, given
                time, we will have a more Agile way of working. However, "Agility is
                not the goal; it's a means to delivering software effectively", so I
                cannot be arrogant myself and claim that it's the only way. :)

                In fact, we've identified some elements in our business environment
                that will make it very difficult to eliminate the phased approach
                completely. It's a challenge that we may in fact turn into our
                advantage, but it's something that I have to help the people involved
                to solve. But we still may have to accept some phased approach in some
                environments.


                Petri Heiramo


                Process Improvement Manager
                SysOpen Digia Plc / Telecommunications
                Hämeentie 135 A, FIN-00560 Helsinki, Finland
                email: petri.heiramo@... / +358-40-7092 526
              • Graeme Matthew
                sorry thought you did not have approval, hope it goes well, good luck
                Message 7 of 14 , Feb 2, 2007
                  sorry thought you did not have approval, hope it goes well, good luck

                  petriheiramo wrote:
                  >
                  > Hi Graeme,
                  >
                  > > Get approval. Pick a project, ensure you have a team that is fully
                  > > committed to the agile mindset, prove it, let the business market its
                  > > success and I am sure that people will say I want a piece of that. I
                  > > strongly believe that many people are risk averse, why change, but if
                  > > they see it work they are very quick to grab some of it :-)) It takes a
                  > > few people to make the change and take the risk.
                  >
                  > I have already received that approval in my division, and I've got a
                  > sample of successes :). I don't have to prove them in my part of the
                  > organization anymore, just get people to understand the results and
                  > how to apply it in their work (ie. start their own Scrum project, or
                  > convert into one). That's where I need them to understand the thinking
                  > as well.
                  >
                  > But I also need to carry the torch to other parts of the organization.
                  > They work in a different kind of software development business and
                  > while there are many equalities between the work in the divisions,
                  > there are some very significant differences, primarily in the customer
                  > world. So merely showing success in our division is not enough
                  > (especially when it's difficult to show it in big numbers), I have to
                  > be able to give them ideas how they can get them in their world.
                  >
                  > So I'm going in through all fronts. First get them to understand the
                  > ideas of Agility, then show that we've had great results and people
                  > are happy with it, and then go in and work the miracles with them. :)
                  > It's still a long road ahead, but I'm very optimistic.
                  >
                  > > If you believe in De Bono, look at Pratical Thinking, pg 130
                  > >
                  > > No Escape:
                  > >
                  > > "The idea is so absolutely right that everyone must work towards it.
                  > > Lack of acceptance of the idea can only be due to ignorance, stupidity
                  > > or bad will"
                  > >
                  > > Who wants to be seen as ignorant?
                  > > Who wants to be seen as stupid?
                  > > Who wants , no matter what the politics wants to be seen as bad will?
                  > >
                  > > now if you execute and prove its not an idea it is fact , who would
                  > say no?
                  >
                  > I agree, but people firm in their opinion will often still defend
                  > their opinion (see Practical Thinking, p. 88 - 92). They either claim
                  > that I don't have the whole picture (yes, it's nice it works for you,
                  > but we have this and that, and it won't work here the same) or they
                  > are "arrogant" and shut out the possibilities to avoid confronting the
                  > change.
                  >
                  > Luckily, I'm getting positive feedback on the ideas and I think, given
                  > time, we will have a more Agile way of working. However, "Agility is
                  > not the goal; it's a means to delivering software effectively", so I
                  > cannot be arrogant myself and claim that it's the only way. :)
                  >
                  > In fact, we've identified some elements in our business environment
                  > that will make it very difficult to eliminate the phased approach
                  > completely. It's a challenge that we may in fact turn into our
                  > advantage, but it's something that I have to help the people involved
                  > to solve. But we still may have to accept some phased approach in some
                  > environments.
                  >
                  > Petri Heiramo
                  >
                  > Process Improvement Manager
                  > SysOpen Digia Plc / Telecommunications
                  > Hämeentie 135 A, FIN-00560 Helsinki, Finland
                  > email: petri.heiramo@...
                  > <mailto:petri.heiramo%40sysopendigia.com> / +358-40-7092 526
                  >
                  >
                • petriheiramo
                  Graeme, ... Your advice is a solid one, and ultimately it will come down to getting it work in practice. No matter of talk and ideology will surpass the proof
                  Message 8 of 14 , Feb 2, 2007
                    Graeme,

                    > sorry thought you did not have approval, hope it goes well, good luck

                    Your advice is a solid one, and ultimately it will come down to
                    getting it work in practice. No matter of talk and ideology will
                    surpass the proof of practical success.

                    So far all I've done in the other parts in the organization is talk. I
                    have to take your advice to heart in order to prove Agility there. How
                    did it go, "walk the walk"? :)

                    Interestingly, while often development processes are evaluated based
                    on their financial performance, some of the recent interest has
                    focused primarily on the effect of Agility on developer morale.


                    Yours Sincerely,


                    Petri

                    > petriheiramo wrote:
                    > >
                    > > Hi Graeme,
                    > >
                    > > > Get approval. Pick a project, ensure you have a team that is fully
                    > > > committed to the agile mindset, prove it, let the business
                    market its
                    > > > success and I am sure that people will say I want a piece of that. I
                    > > > strongly believe that many people are risk averse, why change,
                    but if
                    > > > they see it work they are very quick to grab some of it :-)) It
                    takes a
                    > > > few people to make the change and take the risk.
                    > >
                    > > I have already received that approval in my division, and I've got a
                    > > sample of successes :). I don't have to prove them in my part of the
                    > > organization anymore, just get people to understand the results and
                    > > how to apply it in their work (ie. start their own Scrum project, or
                    > > convert into one). That's where I need them to understand the thinking
                    > > as well.
                    > >
                    > > But I also need to carry the torch to other parts of the organization.
                    > > They work in a different kind of software development business and
                    > > while there are many equalities between the work in the divisions,
                    > > there are some very significant differences, primarily in the customer
                    > > world. So merely showing success in our division is not enough
                    > > (especially when it's difficult to show it in big numbers), I have to
                    > > be able to give them ideas how they can get them in their world.
                    > >
                    > > So I'm going in through all fronts. First get them to understand the
                    > > ideas of Agility, then show that we've had great results and people
                    > > are happy with it, and then go in and work the miracles with them. :)
                    > > It's still a long road ahead, but I'm very optimistic.
                    > >
                    > > > If you believe in De Bono, look at Pratical Thinking, pg 130
                    > > >
                    > > > No Escape:
                    > > >
                    > > > "The idea is so absolutely right that everyone must work towards it.
                    > > > Lack of acceptance of the idea can only be due to ignorance,
                    stupidity
                    > > > or bad will"
                    > > >
                    > > > Who wants to be seen as ignorant?
                    > > > Who wants to be seen as stupid?
                    > > > Who wants , no matter what the politics wants to be seen as bad
                    will?
                    > > >
                    > > > now if you execute and prove its not an idea it is fact , who would
                    > > say no?
                    > >
                    > > I agree, but people firm in their opinion will often still defend
                    > > their opinion (see Practical Thinking, p. 88 - 92). They either claim
                    > > that I don't have the whole picture (yes, it's nice it works for you,
                    > > but we have this and that, and it won't work here the same) or they
                    > > are "arrogant" and shut out the possibilities to avoid confronting the
                    > > change.
                    > >
                    > > Luckily, I'm getting positive feedback on the ideas and I think, given
                    > > time, we will have a more Agile way of working. However, "Agility is
                    > > not the goal; it's a means to delivering software effectively", so I
                    > > cannot be arrogant myself and claim that it's the only way. :)
                    > >
                    > > In fact, we've identified some elements in our business environment
                    > > that will make it very difficult to eliminate the phased approach
                    > > completely. It's a challenge that we may in fact turn into our
                    > > advantage, but it's something that I have to help the people involved
                    > > to solve. But we still may have to accept some phased approach in some
                    > > environments.
                    > >
                    > > Petri Heiramo
                    > >
                    > > Process Improvement Manager
                    > > SysOpen Digia Plc / Telecommunications
                    > > Hämeentie 135 A, FIN-00560 Helsinki, Finland
                    > > email: petri.heiramo@...
                    > > <mailto:petri.heiramo%40sysopendigia.com> / +358-40-7092 526
                    > >
                    > >
                    >
                  • Alexey Krivitsky
                    Steven. That s an interesting point you made about a scrum team put to waterfall: a real scrum team will turn any of existing processes they are faced with
                    Message 9 of 14 , Feb 2, 2007
                      Steven.

                      That's an interesting point you made about a scrum team put to waterfall:
                      a real scrum team will turn any of existing processes they are faced with into scrum
                      after several adaptations.

                      This means that if a company doesn't know how to make their processes agile,
                      they need to invite an expert scrum team that will show the approach in real time.

                      That's interesting.

                      On 1/31/07, Steven Gordon < sgordonphd@...> wrote:

                      For teams that just do not get it, a short waterfall is not a bad
                      starting point. What happens when a new scrum teams tries to do a
                      short waterfall is quite predictable.

                      When they cannot deliver anything completely done, then inspect and
                      adapt should slowly lead to more thinly sliced stories, analysis and
                      design via just defining the tests before the implementation, and most
                      of the XP engineering practices (as long as somebody prevents the team
                      from extending the length of their sprints).

                      The shorter the sprint length, the quicker the learning (I highly
                      recommend 2 weeks at the max). Of course, a good coach can
                      excellerate this improvement process, but having the team's experience
                      motivate the improvements helps people really get it.

                      Steve

                      On 1/31/07, Mike Sutton <mike.sutton@...> wrote:
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      > Hi All,
                      >
                      > having recently been on a scrum master workshop and experienced the
                      > revelation that is scrum, I could help but notice just how many people
                      > who attended this workshop didn't 'get' it. After years of being told
                      > what to do, how to do it and when to do it by, many of the attendees
                      > were with an agile doctor looking for a waterfall prescription.
                      >
                      > By this I mean, they hadn't made the mental leap that Scrum requires
                      > for it to be done properly. Infact my observation was that in the
                      > activities we did, many proposed solutions that inserted waterfall
                      > into sprints (analyses firsts, then design and so on). Applying a
                      > scrum approach to a waterfall implementation is asking for trouble
                      > because you perhaps will tend to imply that each waterfall phase might
                      > be considered a sprint and therefore would last a month!
                      >
                      > Does anyone have anything to add to this and perhaps experiences of
                      > scrums which have been chucked over the waterfall?
                      >
                      > cheers
                      > Mike.
                      > certified.certifiable


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