A Commonplace

What is a commonplace?



97 Agile Ideas - Idea Number 3


If you're going to drive a car, it's fairly important that you can see out of the windscreen. In order to control things we need to be able to see what's going on. In traditional software development projects it's often very hard to see, or know what's going on. Agile uses a number of practices to make seeing what's going on easier. Every day Agile teams have a stand-up meeting where the tell each other what's happening. There's a strong advice in Agile that teams should sit together, and also sit with the Product Owner, the representative of the customer so that they can hear what's going on. At the end of every sprint there are a couple of meetings which allow the team to communicate what's going on. The retrospective let's the team talk about what works well and what doesn't and gives them a chance to communicate anything that's bothering them. A show and tell where the team demonstrate working software.

Transparency can be difficult for some people to deal with when they first start to work with Agile teams. Often management and senior stakeholders aren't used to being told about the problems that a project is experiencing almost from the start. Transparency can be embarrassing, and that's part of the reason that we have meetings that increase transparency frequently and often.

In general, if a team is struggling, one way to help the team struggle less is to help them increase levels of transparency.