For years Agile practices and methodologies have failed to adequately address legitimate management concerns: prioritization, dependencies, meaningful metrics, forecasting, and aligning specialist functions to deliver what customers request. Within the Kanban Method and the lesser-known Enterprise Services Planning (ESP) body of practices there are well-established solutions that have helped managers overcome these chronic problems. ESP is a collection of advanced practices to reach and maintain high levels of fitness-for-purpose. However there are simplified versions, based on the validated practices, than any Agile manager can use. We will look at one set of practices to address the dependencies pain point from a case study.
Agile’ s answer to dependencies has been to ‘thin slice’ or to ‘put all dependent skills in the same team.’ It’s answer to prioritization is ‘place responsibility on one person’ or ‘force stack ranking’ or ‘just do the weighted, shortest job first’. Agile metrics are not KPIs – doubling velocity would not be an improvement. For forecasting, it’s mostly smoke and mirrors with very low reliability. We will frankly look at why these popular Agile solutions don’t help managers. Then we will look simple approaches any manager can implement based on Kanban and ESP practices and how it overcomes these pain points. As a coach you will be prepared to learn more about how to start tackling these chronic issues for good. As a manager you will hear answers to your burning questions and know where to start looking for better help.