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Scrum Agile for Small Business | What It Means To Be Agile In 2020

The world is changing faster than ever and SCRUM is how we manage to keep up.

For small business, this is a golden age. Dinosaur corporations are refusing to adapt, and we can see them flailing and dying out. These companies waste millions of dollars developing products which people wanted 3 years ago and that no one needs today. They aren't agile.

Small teams, utilizing SCRUM, are always ready to hit moving targets. Short sprints and rapid release cycles give us a large advantage bringing the right product to market.

There's a bit of a stereotype that Agile developers “don't care about deadlines”. This couldn't be further from the truth. We have far more deadlines than a traditional 'waterfall' project.; weekly, even daily, milestones to be met. Agile lets us estimate better and meet those deadlines.

In reality, it's the planning phase we don't care much about. This isn't to say that we don't plan our projects but rather we do not make the mistake of overplanning. We don't throw planning out the window, but we keep it to a bare minimum and put our priorities on prototyping instead.

Imagine spending a year and thousands of dollars writing a product development plan only to have the stakeholder tell you it doesn't meet their needs. Great... now you've taken a loss and all you have to show for it is some documents describing something nobody wants.

Now imagine spending a week or two developing a prototype that one can show the stakeholder. You don't just wind up with something functional, you get something far more important: Feedback. You can directly address what the stakeholder actually needs, instead of what you think they might want.

Plan, prototype, test, repeat. Iterative development is key to product development in our increasingly chaotic world. The rate of change is simply too fast for linear perspectives on just about anything these days.

Rome might not have been built in a day, but no one asks the important question: How many bricks did they manage to get down per day.

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