Thursday, May 15, 2014

The One Thing I'd Add to the Agile Manifesto

In class yesterday, someone asked if the Agile Manifesto was still considered enough. This was an unusually advanced group of Scrum Product Owners, so we spent some time on it.

My first answer was "No," and that I haven't seen anything needed to do excellent work that wasn't a part of it.

But then, I made the mistake of continuing to think about it over lunch. Thinking...such a bad idea. :-)

I recalled how I had written my Work Manifesto many years earlier. Why?

I thought of how my Scrum Master classes often watches Daniel Pink's TED talk on what motivates employees. Why? Partly to say that Scrum takes care of two of the three things Pink says are needed, but that not this one thing.

And this one thing is what Millenials want most of all in their work.

Purpose. That it matters what they do. That this work is making a difference. To answer the question, "Why are we doing this, and why should anyone care?"

As the ScrumMaster, Product Owner, or even a team member, help bring purpose to your work any means of creating a noble vision. This can be anything that pulls the team forward to something bigger, brighter, better. I've seen consistently with healthy teams that the common purpose and values pulls them together into working in a healthy, productive way that makes work fun and fulfilling.

To paraphrase Leo Tolstoy -

 “Happy teams resemble one another, but each unhappy team is unhappy in its own tragic way.”

Something that I've come across recently that have inspired me - Crisp's vision and strategy. This is so refreshing in out scarcity-mindset, competitive world. Yes, Dorothy, even among agile training and coaching companies (and you know who you are ;-)

On a related note, check out the Cult of Done Manifesto and the Software Craftsmanship Manifesto.

And thank you, Mehul, for asking the question...


Scrum tool said...

The manifesto can and should be used only as a reference – the very purpose for which it has been created… the implementation depends upon how much scrum needs to be scaled and what the exact project requirements are like.

Jason Knight said...

Great stuff Scott. It seems appropriate to include a generic statement like what you have at the top of your work manifesto, to the Agile Manifesto:

"Purpose-Motivated over Money-Driven"

Perhaps, the purpose could be qualified somehow such that it is clearly laudable.

I would justify it being added into the Agile Manifesto by referencing one of the 12 principles:

"Agile processes promote sustainable development.
The sponsors, developers, and users should be able
to maintain a constant pace indefinitely."

It seems reasonable to me that focusing on developing a driving purpose will go a long way to promote that constant interest, constant motivation, even constant sacrifice that would support not only a constant pace but a constant pace beyond that which would be expected without such a purpose.

What are your thoughts?