Planning isn't free

I've got a confession to make: I secretly enjoy rewriting code when requirements change. I get to think again about what I was doing and my assumptions, tidy up the lingering technical debt, make a few performance optimisations and abstract things a little bit so I don't have to worry »


Firefighting is one of the biggest and most common causes of lost productivity and morale in software development. It usually manifests as developers being pulled off their project to urgently fix something - the live site is spewing 500 errors, there's a button in the wrong place, or a senior »

Kaizen and Scrum

Kaizen, the process of "improvement" in the Toyota Production System, is a valuable complement to Scrum, based on many of the same principles. It means teams can get effective results both from their retrospectives and daily attempts to resolve waste. At the core is a variant of the PDCA loop »

Waste redux

A conversation today reminded me of my musings about waste from a couple of months ago. The context being that Scrum is misunderstood more often than it's understood, the relatively broad statements of the Agile Manifesto are easily abused to claim whatever you're currently doing is "agile", and in any »

Agile transformation: The Low

A few months into any company's journey towards agile development I often see a point which I call the Low. This is where you've brought in a few experts, and done a few of the things they've said... but nothing seems to have improved and now people are wandering round »