The Agile Manifesto was a game-changing paper many years ago.  That impact is still felt today.  However, there are a lot of thoughts that are expressed that are often lost.  In this season of becoming a better developer, we look at all of the truths this short document highlights.  There are twelve principles that are worth digging into. This approach will help us look for ways to learn from those that went before us.

The Agile Manifesto Launched Many Modern Processes

A large portion of modern development theory points back to this document.  We perform many tasks that can be directly linked back to suggestions from the twelve principles.  Examples include CI/CD, sprints, scrum, and many others.  That does not mean these ideas did not also come from other sources.  Agile just happened to contribute heavily to the adoption of them.  With that in mind, it seems we should all have a solid understanding of this foundational document.

More Than Documentation

A common misconception we will correct is the idea that Agile can be boiled down to a desire to avoid design and documentation.  That is not the focus of the agile manifesto.  If you want to boil down this document to one thought, it is that customer satisfaction should be the focus.  Software development is not different from other products and services.  The customer is always right, even when they do not know how to achieve their goals.  We cannot tell the customer what they need.  Instead, we need to listen and help craft a solution that genuinely satisfies what the customer needs.

Productive or Busy

One of the things I have learned as I have reviewed these principles is that they point to a common struggle in productivity guides.  There is a difference in being busy and being productive.  One does not necessarily equate to the other.  The Agile Manifesto provides us several ways to focus on being productive, avoid busywork, and get a solution built sooner rather than later.

The Twelve Principles and Overall Manifesto

Rob Broadhead

Rob is a founder of, and frequent contributor to, Develpreneur. This includes the Building Better Developers podcast. He is also a lifetime learner as a developer, designer, and manager of software solutions. Rob is the founder of RB Consulting and has managed to author a book about his family experiences and a few about becoming a better developer. In his free time, he stays busy raising five children (although they have grown into adults). When he has a chance to breathe, he is on the ice playing hockey to relax or working on his ballroom dance skills.

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