Monday, April 11, 2011

Agile Principle 10: Keep it Simple

Let's take a look at the tenth underlying principle of the agile manifesto:
"Simplicity--the art of maximizing the amount of work not done--is essential."
What does that really mean? What are the implications for our daily business? Let's analyze this principle and see where this gets us.
  • "Simplicity" - As already mentioned in the principle, we talk about "the art of maximizing the amount of work not done". Always think about unnecessary tasks in your todo list. Think about requirements no one needs fulfilled to do her job. Think about methods, classes, and your software design in general - you will find various things to be skipped as they do not contribute to your sprint goal or acceptance tests.
    Values: Focus, Simplicity
    Principles: Limit Work in Progress, Decide as late as possible, Self-Similarity, Opportunity, Eliminate Waste
    Practices: Product Backlog, Refactoring, Seeing Waste, Simple Design
  • "is essential" - The essence is what really creates value. All other things are nice-to-haves, gold plating, and pure technical bits and pieces. We need to focus on the essence to reach the goals we are committed to.
    Values: Focus, Courage
    Principles: Eliminate Waste, Decide as late as possible, Economics, Business Value
    Practices: Seeing Waste
See also my blog post on "Focus on the Essence".
To say it in three words, the tenth principle is about Keep it Simple.

Also read in this blog post series:

1 comment:

  1. Hi Marc!

    I really enjoy the simplicity of your post!