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Agile Principle Part 10: Simplicity

by Ken Rickard

Dec 11, 2017

Simplicity--the art of maximizing the amount of work not done--is essential

Simple sells, plain and simple... Pun and simplicity intended!

Let's break this principle down...

Simplicity - You may employ a simple framework like Scrum to keep organized and to ensure high value is delivered often. I think the success of Scrum lives partially in its simplicity. It's a double-edged sword though, as it's simplicity to understand is not equal to the ability to work within and adhere to the Scrum framework. But regardless there is a need not only to keep it simple when it comes to the organization of projects, but also to keep it simple at the development level as well. For Scrum specifically, working on things that are not in the sprint and therefore, not part of the sprint goal means you're adding complexity to the process. Side note: You'll also be undermining trust with your team and business by working out of sprint scope.

Maximizing the work not done - This is an important topic. Think about it, "Maximizing the work NOT done", means you don't allow yourself to fall into a first in/first out approach to completing work. Instead you regularly reconsider the order of the work and re-prioritize the list based on current business demands. Now, inherently that might sound chaotic. But realize that you are only re-prioritizing future work, not in progress work. Changing in progress work should only be done when the work no longer is deemed valuable. Because if the future work is consistently re-prioritized, then you should always be working on the highest valued, most vetted, and most important things at all times.

This 12 part series was published by Ken Rickard on LinkedIn Pulse, to read the original version of this blog click hereTo read the entire 12 part series, click here for a table of contents. 

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