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Agile Principle Part 9: Technical Excellence

by Ken Rickard

Dec 11, 2017

Continuous attention to technical excellence and good design enhances agility

Implementing Agile even with a single team can be challenging, especially when getting everyone to change the way they work and agree upon coding practices and standards. How about scaling practices within all development teams? Now what if you need to include the business in this technical and design excellence, as the business continues to become more technical with each passing year. Overwhelming? It shouldn't be.

Let's break this principle down...

Technical Excellence - Individually we all have our own preferred standards, and as a team we have to communicate to share those thoughts and come to an agreement. Having standards at the practice level goes a long way towards achieving technical excellence. Have you ever worked at a place where each development team did things their own way? It's a painful process to integrate and release any systems at the same time, therefore reducing your agility.

Having someone to steward the technical standards is important for governance. New employees will come, you don't want people coming in and working in a different way because they were not aware of the local protocol. Even for existing employees it's good to have a community approach in place to share new information and experiences. Your standards should always be evolving as technology does not stand still.

Good technical practices that are shared, transparent, often updated, and adhered to will often go a long way towards technical excellence.

Good Design - Like good technical practices being updated often, a good design is iteratively updated to take advantage of the changing needs of the business. Upfront designs become stale quickly in a competitive business.

I come from the world of Business Intelligence, so more and more of the work in BI is going to the hands of the business. Tight collaboration between a data development team and the business folks that are consuming that data structure means good design is critical. Development can no longer hide behind Project Managers and Business Analyst, they must often talk to the business directly about design, and the business in turn needs to become more technical than previously capable. At least in the BI world this is already happening as the business is now typically the ones hiring the data scientist and analyst.

To sum this up, creating a community of like-minded people with similar tools or skills makes a lot of sense. Sowing the seeds of continuous education and improvement with a Community of Practice will help to keep a closely connected group of people excelling towards greatness.

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. 

Interested in learning more about the Agile Methodology or incorporating it into your business? Contact a representative at CCG by emailing or call (813) 265-3239.