Is Agile Really just “Good Project Management”?


Glenn Alleman has a great post here asking the question “If I'm Doing Project Management Right am I Agile?” and my answer is a resounding PROBABLY!!!  🙂

I have been thinking this same thing since way back in 2004 when I posted about an article I saw about agile methods. My post was called “Agile Methods: Based on False Assumptions?” In it I talked about how many of the points the author was making about what it called “Traditional Management” was really just bad management. This was at a time when I was on some email lists that talked about PM methods and I was getting the feeling that Agile had been created by a group of people that had worked for the WORST PMS EVER. The stories they told and the processes they talked about were not the PM I understood and practiced. It was some horrible torture method designed by people that did not like software developers. I started to feel like the Agile community was a support group for abused software developers. The hard part was that they were talking about “Project Managers” as if they were an interchangeable set of identical parts” (IRONIC since that was one of the main accusations the agile community was making about how PMs saw software developers.)

That said I don’t think that good project management and Agile methods are a 100% overlap I do think that if you are doing project management correctly and the methods you are using in the management of your project are well fit to the particular project you are managing then what you are doing will NOT be the kind of PM that the agile community rails against. So for the most part the answer to Glenn’s question is YES. 🙂

Comments (3)
  1. curt finch says:

    I’m with you man.  Agile is – I think – a specific instance of a kind of project management where the schedule is immutable but the scope can change all day.  It is the latest buzzword in a long list of things that have been promoted as a panacea for bad software.  The ideas aren’t worthless but neither are they magic.

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