What Is Agile?

So just what is this Agile thing?

If you ask 10 different people, you will likely get 10 different answers.

A methodology.

A practice.

That thing we tried that one time.

The fact of the matter is that many groups who claim to be an Agile organization, or have tried to become Agile are lacking the very basic understanding of just what it means to be Agile.

The process of becoming Agile must start with the understanding that a cultural shift must occur. To be Agile means to embody the Agile Manifesto and the 12 Principles of Agile. Agile is not a methodology, Agile is a culture of openness, trust, and communication.

With that said, there are many methodologies that have been recognized as being Agile in nature. Methods such as Lean Software Development, Kanban, Extreme Programming (XP), and many others are considered to be Agile due to the foundations with which they work.

Probably the most popular Agile method, and what most think of when they hear Agile, is Scrum.

Scrum is an iterative development model that aligns business partners and development teams as one. The teams work together in a collaborative fashion on a daily basis with the goal of delivering working software following the completion of each iteration or sprint.