When did you know that Agile was a great answer to complex engineering?

The moment Ralph Jocham knew that agile was a great solution to complex problems

When did you know that Agile was a great answer to complex engineering?

As I’ve spoken about before, my journey to agile started with a quest for excellence in the software development space and evolved through a series of agile experiences and agile frameworks before I found my home in Scrum.

After leaving University, I followed engineering practices to the letter and sought to master technical excellence in my field through process, but it didn’t take long before I recognised that how I worked was just as important as the work I was delivering.

Doing what is required versus doing great work.

Following a process to the letter and leaning on solid, technical skills doesn’t lead to the best solution, it just ensures that you meet contractual requirements.

Knowing why a specific product or feature matters to a customer and how it will help them do a specific job, or achieve a specific outcome, helps provide you with the context that enables you to create something that truly delights customers.

eXtreme Programming

eXtreme programming deeply changed my belief system.

Before working with an agile framework, software engineering was largely about managing projects.

Checking the right boxes in the right order to get a sign off from a client.

A focus on making sure you didn’t get it wrong rather than a deep commitment to getting it right.

A radical shift in philosophy and mindset.

Encountering Agile is a lot like spending your whole life believing that the Earth is a disc and then having someone tell you that the Earth is a sphere. A part of you immediately discounts what you are reading because it is such a radical departure from everything you have ever learned.

It’s round?


And then comes the proof.

The irrefutable evidence that this approach to software development is a game-changer.

That is the moment that I believed. That is the moment when I knew that Agile is a great answer to complexity and software engineering.

The moment I started to see the difference between the quality of work I was producing using eXtreme Programming and the difference in customer satisfaction we experienced when compared to the traditional style of software development.

It was a deeply confusing initiation into the world of agile because I was drawn in two directions.

The old me wanted to stay nice and comfortable by checking the engineering boxes, and the new me was in love with everything I was learning and experiencing through eXtreme Programming.

It took a few months of moving between both worlds – the old project management style of getting work done and the new, dynamic and engaging style of agile software development – but then I fully committed to Agile and embraced that journey wholeheartedly.

The rest is history.

About Effective Agile

Ralph Jocham is a Change Agent in Scrum // Agile // Coaching // Evidence Based Management and also a Professional Scrum Trainer based in Europe.

As one of the first Professional Scrum Trainers in the world, Ralph has worked directly with cocreator of #scrum, Ken Schwaber, and has played an integral part in the course development of the #PSPO (Professional Scrum Product Owner) as well as the delivery of all #scrum.org certified courses.

If you’re looking to invest in training that transforms and empowers teams to successfully adopt #scrum or #agile, and create high-performance #productdevelopment environments leveraging the agile values and principles, visit https://effectiveagile.com/agile-scrum-trainings/

If you would like to work with Ralph and company as an #agilecoach, #agileconsultant, or powerful change agent to get your team back on track and on the road to high-performance #agile #productdevelopment, visit https://effectiveagile.com/agile-transformation/

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