by Steve Messenger
Steve Messenger has produced a "must read" guide for any business manager who wants to understand both why Agile is good for running business projects, and how to go about it (and the pitfalls and myths to avoid!). His experience in running projects of all sizes, from the "mega" to the single deliverable, shines through every chapter. As such he shows a comprehensive understanding of the topic in all its aspects, from the philosophy to individual techniques. This book is comprehensive but easily digested, as any good management book should be, and in Chapter 3 (Agile Governance and Organization ) he gives a good definition of Agile - to paraphrase "the right things are done" and "things are done right". In summary, here we are 20 years on and Steve Messenger shows us how Agile is a way of running and transforming a business, not just doing IT projects better.
This is a great read for the manager or executive about to embrace Agile techniques. In plain English, it takes the reader through an Agile approach to a project, dispelling myths and helping the reader understand what it would be like to take on Agile. The book carefully explains the differences of managing an Agile project to running with a waterfall method. The guide is very practical, making use of easy-to-relate to examples. There are lots of Agile techniques within these pages that organizations can benefit from whether they move to a full Agile model or not. The book is so well written that you can skip to a relevant chapter within the book to focus on a particular topic and not lose context. Of particular use is the way the author has explained how to create a sustainable Agile environment, describing roles and interactions very well. It's an essential read for anyone considering Agile and I will hand it out to my colleagues in that light.