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Introduction   »   Agile Flavours   »   Agile Approaches


For the purposes of the Toolkit, we will interchange and use the terms approach, method and methodology. For us it makes no sense to separate them semantically. We call them flavours of agile mostly.

The agile methodologies all have some common features.
  1. The customer is often the primary focus.
  2. Regular deliveries feed into regular reviews.
  3. They aim to create high performance teams.
  4. The teams build using continual improvement.
  5. They use a collaborative working environment.
  6. Feedback is collected in the customer reviews.
  7. The life cycle is typified by small regular deliveries.
  8. They subdivide work into small more manageable chunks.
  9. Continual improvement is developed using customer feedback.
  10. The teams build on early releases to evolve a deliverable solution.
  11. They seek to deliver something early that is recognisable to a customer.
  12. Customer feedback is delivered on the quality and operation of the releases.
  13. They rely on open, capable, flexible people who can interrelate using superior communications.
  14. They struggle to connect seamlessly with non-agile projects whilst assuming all waterfall projects deliver poorly & late.
  15. They are held responsible for inept lightweight documentation for inefficient processes with inappropriate, offensive or nerdy terms.
The agile methodologies and projects have some shared dependencies and constraints as well as some common and unfortunate failures. If you worked on any of the nascent agile projects you will likely recognise some of the characteristic agile project features.

You may have also identified that the earliest agile projects professed to run inside proper controls. However this was a quasi project governance that was unfortunately flawed and unproven.


The agile approach you choose defines the governance you operate. However, the lighter the approach the lighter the checks and balances. This unfortunate pretence sought to claim a contemporary supremacy over what were seen as old fashioned projects operating with control, restraint, quality and basic good management.

The Big Agile Toolkit seeks to redress this balance. Regardless if you have delivered agile work before or not you will soon have all the techniques and tools to deliver projects on time, to quality and budget.

Maybe you have already delivered projects to budget and with a customer who signed off deliverables. Maybe you even managed to get a successful project review report. But when the project ended and the team members moved on, did the project assign someone responsible for ensuring the promised project benefits were realised? Did it state who was going to ensure the costly resources deployed on the project delivered what they planned to? Benefits do not sit on the surface waiting to be picked up. They need focus and effort to be extracted and quantified. We know that our benefits do not automatically fall off the back of our project. However agile methods seem to routinely omit this very important benefits extraction activity.

The solution your team delivers will offer proposed benefits. Those benefits are hidden deep within the solution and are often only uncovered when the solution is operated and used. So realisation of these benefits demands a plan of activity to market and promote the solution as well as a period to monitor the resultant benefits and the return on investment. Keep in mind that your business stakeholder and solution users are the customers. They have invested in your project and in your development so they are understandably expecting some certainty and return on investment.

The Toolkit will address all these issues and provide a governance structure to surround and guide your project from strategy to delivery and onto realised benefits.

The various types of agile development are very extensively documented across the web and this is not the place to document them. They all work with The Big Agile Toolkit because the Toolkit provides the important governance surrounding the method and it extends the agile method itself. The various agile methods very often demand that you attend appropriate training and gain an accreditation assessment. Details of this are on the websites of the various methods. No accreditation or approval is required to use and deploy The Big Agile Toolkit. A swift overview of the popular agile methods is provided as follows:-

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