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Company Culture and Agile

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A company's culture is, in the words of William Schneider, "how we do things around here to succeed."


The Schneider Culture Model define four distinct cultures: Collaboration culture is about working together.Control culture is about getting and keeping control.Competence culture is about being the best.Cultivation culture is about learning and growing with a sense of purpose.
In this presentation, Michael Sahota discusses Schneider's company culture model and how Agile approaches fit in each distinct culture.  He does the same analysis in this blogpost.

He places Agile characteristics in the quadrants used in Schneider's company culture model, where the x axis has at its ends Reality (top) and Potential (bottom), and the y axis has on the left end, People, and on the right end, Company.



Then he overlays Agile approaches on the matrix to show which approaches may be best aligned with company culture, and suggests that leading with the appropriate approach is most like…

Signs That A Planning Meeting Isn't Going Well

Lots of churn - talking about scenarios that have not already been considered; there is a feeling that every scenario, regardless of how unlikely one may be, must be given considerationAdding features and getting SWAGsLosing focus - frequent digressions, squirrels, going down sidetracks, etc.Paralysis - everything requires consensus; no one makes a decision; all points of view have equal weight/valueTrying to put 10 lbs of sand into a 5-lb bag.  There are too many items, so instead of reviewing a prioritized list of features with estimates, the group looks at the entire product backlog and arbitrarily manipulates scope, efforts, resources, etc. to create the predetermined release scenarioPeople other than SW devs and SQE design technical solutions and estimate effort for their contrived solutions (e.g., "it shouldn't be hard to . . . . "; "it would be easy just to . . . ")

Agile Practices for Embedded Software Development

A client wants to know how Agile software development principles and practices work with development of software embedded in hardware they manufacture.  I've found a number of companies and consultants that demonstrate and write about the value of Agile principles and practices in embedded software development.

Dean Leffingwell has written about Agile software development in a high assurance (i.e., regulated) environment and explained that Scrum allows an organization that produces hardware and embedded software in a regulated environment to satisfy all regulatory and audit requirements.

Rally Software provides a toolkit for Agile in high assurance environments.

And consulting companies like Certified Compliance Solutions, Inc., advocate Agile for embedded software in medical device manufacturing.

The same risk factors and benefits that make Agile methods a compelling choice for all types of software development organizations make similar approaches appealing to the developers of s…