How do you imagine Agile will evolve from here?

How do you imagine Agile will evolve from here?

A popular question that keeps coming up in the Agile world is, “How will Agile evolve from here?”

To answer this topical Agile question, I’d like to share my thoughts on this interesting subject. 🌍

Agile Manifesto: A Point In Time

In your Agile journey, you might have heard some voices suggesting the Agile Manifesto needs a makeover to keep up with evolving pressures, practices and the ever-changing Agile landscape.

Simply put, from my perspective, it does not. πŸ€·β€β™‚οΈ

The Agile Manifesto, drafted in 2001, reflects what worked for 17 pioneers in the field. It resonated globally, setting the stage for the Agile movement.

The Manifesto is essentially a point-in-time document mirroring what those individuals believed would work in the Agile world at that moment.

In 2023 and as we revisit it today, I can confidently say that nothing seems to be outdated.

For instance, the Agile Manifesto advocates for putting people before processes.


Well, it’s clear that the complex problems we solve and the products we create require human ingenuity, dialogue, creativity, and the ability to challenge assumptions.

Of course, processes play a part, but they are not the be-all and end-all of the Agile world environment. πŸš€

Standing the Test of Time

The principles underpinning Agile, too, remain relevant in 2023.

When the COVID-19 pandemic struck in 2020, it tested the principle of face-to-face communication being the most effective method of conveying information, which is still true today.

But remember, it doesn’t mandate face-to-face as the only method. We have indeed learned to convey information digitally effectively. Yet, we are wired evolutionarily to collaborate better in person, and these principles still hold true.

Agile is a Constant Evolution

However, it’s safe to say that while the core principles of Agile remain firm, the way we apply Agile now has evolved considerably. πŸ”„

In the ’90s and early 2000s, we primarily focused on single-team Agile, for example β€” how does Scrum work? How does XP work? How do we build better products with these few people?

Around 2010, we started tackling larger-scale problems, which became far too big for a single team. This problem then led to the emergence of frameworks like LeSS, SAFe, and Disciplined Agile.

Today, the focus is clearly on business agility. This means that the idea that organisations need to be responsible and responsive in a constantly changing in our current volatile market.

So, we’re now talking about how we structure organisations and set processes and policies that foster rapid thinking and innovation to meet market demands and stay competitive.

Agile’s Dual Nature

So, Agile is, in a sense, a paradox. On the one hand, I see its four values and twelve principles as immutable, which means they’re not about to change in my lifetime.

Yet, on the other hand, the work we do and the world we encompass with Agile is in a state of constant flux, which means we’re constantly adjusting to an ever-shifting, unpredictable environment.

Your Agile Journey: Ongoing Adaptation

For those eager to deepen their Agile and Scrum knowledge, I invite you to check out my Agile and Scrum courses. They’re tailored to provide you with the skills and knowledge you need to navigate the Agile landscape confidently.

Remember, the Agile journey is a continual process of learning and adaptation.

Let’s keep learning, keep evolving, and let’s Agile on! πŸš€

author avatar
John McFadyen Managing Partner
John McFadyen is an Executive and Enterprise Agile Coach with proven experience working on some of the UK and Europe’s largest, most complex Agile Transformations. As a Certified Scrum Trainer, John brings a wealth of experience as an Agile coach, Agile practitioner and software developer into each of the four core courses he provides. The war stories, the insights into successful Agile transformations and everything he has learned from coaching high-performance Agile teams combine to provide course delegates with a unique, compelling training experience that transforms as much as it empowers.

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