But first thanks to Dr Nicolas Figay from Airbus for his article about « What’s the Difference? Agile vs Scrum vs Waterfall vs Kanban » which will certainly help a lot of people confronted with these IT buzzwords (especially the non-IT like me …) ! If you want to understand better what is behind these up-to-date ways of designing IT solutions, just read it !
I appreciate people helping others understand what’s behind hype methods with simple words (probably so that I understand them ;-). Our readers know this is precisely the idea behind V&M, with a specific approach : focusing on what methods share, more than their differences. The V&M book authors discovered that many a specific mindset / paradigm allowing to implement ‘system thinking’, by simply focusing on :
- 1° « what is it for? » to define real needs,
- 2° « what is enough ? » to save resources,
- 3° « work WITH the stakeholders » to answer these 2 questions.
Obviously, Agile and Scrum share this focus on working with users to serve their needs and avoid unuseful time and efforts. Lean also. But we know of other methods and tools used in other domains (purchasing, product/services design …) as well as IT projects (e.g. in business analysis or requirements management) that can improve A LOT :
- the expression of needs : Which user know and tell their needs ? How to avoid/manage changing needs ?
- the management of needs : How to manage incomplete expressions and/or ‘Christmas wish lists’ ? How to link users needs, systems requirement, solution features, component characteristics, … and time and costs ? How to manage ‘irrational’ requirements ?
- the checking of REAL user needs : Probably the most important and difficult part of all ?
- the earliest expression of needs of ALL stakeholders : Not only users, but all people which will have a word to say in validating the solution ! How to transform resistance to change into building on stakeholders motivations ?
- the pointing out of cost/time inducers : Which needs are/would lead to over-dimensioning the solution ? Is it worth ? Are all resources really useful ?
- the generation of disruptive creativity : How to discover solutions existing in completely different worlds ? How to help suppliers innovate for you ?
- the choice of the best solution(s) : How to make all stakeholders decide together on the optimal solution(s) ? How to select the best solution(s) ? (s) to insist that the optimal solution often is different for different stakeholders, so on avoiding unuseful standardisation, which is the major cost of overcost I have met in 20 years of value(s) creation experience !
Just like Nicolas Figay points out in this article by pointing out ‘when’ these tools better apply, let us create synergies between methods, more than ‘chapels’ ?