Succeeding with Agile - Mike Cohn's Blog

An Iterative Waterfall Isn’t Agile

I’ve noticed something disturbing over the past two years. And it’s occurred uniformly with teams I’ve worked with all across the world. It’s the tendency to create an iterative waterfall process and then to call it agile.

An iterative waterfall looks something like this: In one sprint, someone (perhaps a business analyst working with a product owner) figures out what is to…

Are 64% of Features Really Rarely or Never Used?

A very oft-cited metric is that 64 percent of features in products are “rarely or never used.” The source for this claim was Jim Johnson, chairman of the Standish Group, who presented it in a keynote at the XP 2002 conference in Sardinia. The data Johnson presented can be seen in the following chart...

Not Everything Needs to Be a User Story: Using FDD Features

The following was originally published in Mike Cohn's monthly newsletter. If you like what you're reading, sign up to have this content delivered to your inbox weeks before it's posted on the blog, here.

User stories are great. When you’ve got users, that is. Sometimes, though, the users of a system or product are so far removed that a team struggles to put users into their stories. A sign that this is happening is when teams write stories that begin with “As a developer...” or “as a product owner....”...

It’s Summer, Find Something to Celebrate

It’s July—find something to celebrate with your team. Unless your “down under,” you’re probably enjoying nicer weather than you have the rest of the year. We’re half way through the year, which means it’s a good time to look back on how far your team has come.

If you have retrospective notes, look back at the notes from six months ago. It’s sometimes...