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What is really Agile?

What is really agile?. Is it a tool, a method, a framework or a mindset?. The space is very cluttered now, as there are too many players, frameworks and certifications.

Agile in it's purest form is a mindset which is truly represented in the agile manifesto;

Manifesto for Agile Development

We are uncovering better ways of developing
software by doing it and helping others do it.
Through this work we have come to value:

Individuals and interactions over processes and tools
Working software over comprehensive documentation
Customer collaboration over contract negotiation
Responding to change over following a plan

That is, while there is value in the items on
the right, we value the items on the left more.

Since the agile thought process started in the software industry the agile manifesto above sounds more software industry specific. With the sporadic adoption of agile ceremonies in other disciplines like engineering, procurement and construction, I am taking the liberty to modify it little bit, and here is the modified version that suits all disciplines of projects.

We are uncovering better ways of developing
deliverables by doing it and helping others do it.
Through this work we have come to value:

Individuals and interactions over processes and tools
Completed WORK over comprehensive documentation
Customer collaboration over contract negotiation
Responding to change over following a plan

That is, while there is value in the items on
the right, we value the items on the left more.

This definition holds good for the present day environment.

Trust, this clarifies.

This captures the mindset. Many people have developed many frameworks which encapsulates these. Here are some of the popular Agile frameworks;

  •  Scrum
  • XP
  • TDD
  • FDD
  • Scaled Agile etc

Of  these, scrum is the most popular.