Introduction to Agile
The course is part of this learning path
This course provides a high-level overview of the Agile mindset, Agile frameworks, and Agile processes.
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- Understand what Agile is
- Understand the benefits of using Agile
- Learn about the Principles of Agile
- Understand the values and principals of Agile
This course is suitable for anyone with no prior knowledge of Agile who is considering, evaluating, or involved in a move towards working in (or with) an Agile environment.
No specific prerequisites. The content is designed to help non-technical teams increase awareness and knowledge from a business perspective.
In Agile environments, teams need to work iteratively. This means that they have a set amount of time to deliver an increment. To do this, they need to plan, design, develop, test, and deliver all within that same set iteration. Once they've delivered, they can look to improve on the increment in the next iteration, but working in this way doesn't come naturally to most of us, and has to be learned. We invited three people to take on the marshmallow tower challenge, and see if they could work in an iterative way.
Our participants, like most people, didn't manage to create a freestanding structure with a marshmallow at the highest point in the time they had. There are a few reasons for this. The first is that they didn't have a bias to action. Instead, they spent a lot of time coming up with a plan of action instead of building. The second is that they were too ambitious, trying to create a really tall tower from the very beginning. The last reason is that they didn't fail fast and iterate. If they had been iterating, they would have started with the simplest possible version of the tower. Then, iteration by iteration, they could have created a taller and taller tower.
Agile thinking is all about failing fast and delivering a minimum viable product. In your workplace, start with the very basics, then iterate to continually deliver better and better increments to your customers.
Paul Williams is a Senior Learning Consultant for QA, based in Manchester, UK. He is a member of the Agile, Lean & DevOps Trainer Team.