75% of online information regarding the explanation for Agile and Scrum is either incorrect, or not consumable by someone who’s trying to immerse themselves in Agile and Scrum.
Here’s an example from one of the top Scrum coaches in the world, Mike Cohn:
Scrum is one of many in the agile process. You can think of agile as an umbrella term that encompasses other processes, such as Extreme Programming, Adaptive System Development, DSDM, Feature Driven Development, Kanban, Crystal and more.
Huh? Mike’s not wrong, it’s just that if a company is trying to embrace Agile, the person reading Mike’s statement could be a Developer or a Sales VP and not have the slightest clue of what all that jargon means. Further, Agile is very different from those processes Mike outlined; Agile is a philosophy, a mindset, a management style, a modern way to collaborate with people. Scrum is more about how to deliver something from collaboration utilizing ceremonies or purpose-driven meetings, artifacts like the Product Backlog, and specific team roles like Scrum Master and Product Owner.
Being Agile and Doing Agile
It’s relatively easy to crystallize the difference between Agile and Scrum using this concept:
Being Agile explained
- Being agile is simply having a mindset that embraces value, flexibility, failure, collaboration, and teamwork.
- Agile is a set of soft skills, a set of management practices that are flat as opposed to traditional command and control, manager-driven practices.
- Agile dictates how to be, not how to do.
- Any company can be Agile! (it’s not just for technology firms or departments)