Agile bigbang created my universe

My introduction to agile software development model was interesting and sad at the same time! I was working in a renowned offshore company in my country (Bangladesh) that had a strong focus on CMMI framework and was fully ready to achieve level-3. Being a Project Manager of US & Europe based offshore projects for a long time and as an active member of the Process Engineering Group (PEG) – I have learned, practiced, experimented a lot of processes in various teams with different projects under the shadow of the RUP and CMMI. I got formal training twice on CMMI from couple of leading QA organizations from abroad.

Enough of my history, lets get back to the point. During 2004, I was assigned as a PM in a new team with a new project from USA. I myself along with my dynamic QA planned and tried to implement all the best practices and best processes in the new team. Don’t ask me how challenging the project was – we 6 members worked 6 months continuously almost without any weekend or vacation (believe me!) to meet the unique requirements from the client and at the end, we failed!

I looked back myself to find out the causes of the great failure and surprisingly identified the most important one – everything of that project was dynamic in nature, but we weren’t! The team was new with dynamic attitudes. The requirements were so volatile that things got change between morning and evening. The architecture was evolving with time in many dimensions. It was an innovative product to display business relevant unique dashboard information to various levels of employees and every time we built something, new ideas were popped in and new requirements were born. Nobody – customer, product owner, business analyst had concrete acceptance criteria in mind.

Hmm….with my broken heart, I was searching around to find a remedy to manage such very dynamic projects and bring success out of it. At that time, my boss voluntarily gave me a new book that none had read yet in the company. It was ‘Agile Project Management’ by Jim Highsmith. I started reading casually first, after reading few pages I just dove into that! Bingo…Eureka…I am no fool, I got my tool! And the journey started…

I think good exposure of the CMMI and RUP, helped me to deeply understand the need and scope of the agile concept and also taught me how to bridge two different worlds in needs with comfort and without conflicts.

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