When we discuss project management, the most misunderstood term I come across is Agile Project Management.

When I speak to potential clients and recommend writing a requirements spec, the objection we almost instantly face is, “Don’t you guys follow Agile? Should you not be able to change things quickly?”

Agile means able to move quickly and easily and it does mean nimble, but it does not mean ad-hoc  and it does not mean “directionless”. It means the ability to change plans quickly, but it does not mean “zero planning”. Rather, it requires more planning and a thorough understanding of the requirements so that dependencies can be identified and the project can be broken down into short development phases.

Agile means we identify the the changes we need in the early stages instead of waiting for the entire project to get over. Agile means we are open to frequent feedback, but that frequency cannot be as high as every 2 days.

Agile does not help you move fast unless you exactly(most of the times) know what you need. Agile is just an approach and there are prerequisites to making the approach work best and a lot of those prerequisites have to be fulfilled by the client.

Successful implementation of Agile requires that the product owner and the tech team view the project from the other’s perspective.