Agile Book Club: Adaptive Planning

Adaptive planning is one of the central ideas of Agile development. In fact, when Martin Fowler describes “the essence of Agile,” one of his two points is that Agile is adaptive rather than predictive. In this book club session, we take a close look at the nature of adaptive planning.

Reading:
📖 Adaptive Planning

🎙 Discussion prompts:

  • The book introduces the idea of a “valuable increment” as something that’s releasable, valuable, and incremental. Valuable increments are distinguished from a user stories, which are valuable, but not necessarily releasable. Is that a useful distinction?

  • “Learning Value” and “Option Value” increments require people to be comfortable with uncertainty and ambiguity, so they’re not often used. How could these types of increments be useful for your real-world work?

  • Focusing on a single valuable increment at a time and breaking it down into smaller pieces is an easy way to increase value. What are some ways stakeholders react to this idea, and how can they be convinced to try it?

  • Teams can choose to weight their plans toward predictability or adaptability. Where have your teams fallen on that spectrum? Where would you prefer that they fall?

About the Book Club

The Art of Agile Development Book Club takes place Fridays from 8:00 – 8:45am Pacific. Each session uses an excerpt from the new edition of my book, The Art of Agile Development, as a jumping-off point for a wide-ranging discussion about Agile ideas and practices.

Visit the event page for more information, including an archive of past sessions. For more about the book, visit the Art of Agile Development home page.

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