There was this funny analogy I found on the Internet between pizza and sex. It went something like this: “Sex is like pizza. When it’s good it’s great. When it’s bad, it’s still pretty good”. Well…tech companies seem to think the same way about Agile Development…or whatever they wanna call it.
Now to be fair, Agile in itself is not a bad thing. But it’s plastered everywhere in job descriptions now to the point where it’s lost all meaning. Agile started out a long while ago, but has since turned into more of a nuisance than a useful tool.
Hours upon hours lost in all sorts of useless meetings, layers upon layers of approval from the client, endless discussions about requirements, endless e-mail chains requiring confirmation when wanting to do something, time lost searching for dank memes instead of working because the product owner can’t be bothered to answer your questions. And I could probably go on…and on…and on…kind of like a sprint planning meeting.
I’ve worked in an Agile environment for about 3 years and since switched to another company where we do use some of these concepts, but without the endless hours wasted in meetings part. And let me tell you, I’m a lot better off.
Hell, event one of the guys that created this concept says it’s time for a change
One problem with Agile is the fact that people do it without having the vaguest idea of what everyone in an Agile team is supposed to be doing. This is especially true for teams that suddenly decide to switch to Agile because…well…reasons. I’ve seen Scrum Masters who don’t raise a finger to actually help the team become more cohesive or work better, I’ve seen Product Owners who couldn’t help me with what the product should actually look like or do. But hey, they have the title, so we should trust they know what they’re doing, right?
Another problem with Agile is that it has sort of become a cult, where if one dares to be the heretic to say anything against it, he becomes the outcast, or the outlaw of the group, the one that is the cause of all the tension in the team, the one that doesn’t work towards the same goal. And this last one is always funny, because should you ever ask some Agile fanatics WHY the use Agile, you’d probably get some generic answers such as “because it’s the way we’ve always done it” or “because it’s the right way to do it”
So yeah, as you can tell, I am not a big fan of this whole Agile thingy. Though it has (or had) potential, the different variations I have experienced have been very bad. And I know I am not the only one, mostly because I’ve been in teams where I’ve worked with people who used words far less kind than mine to describe it.