Posted on June 9, 2014 · Posted in Agile, Leadership, Management, Task Management, Tips and Tricks

According to Agile Innovation written by Jean Loup-Richet, an agile project management involves accomplished individuals from the appropriate business, with supplier and customer input. Agile techniques are best used in small-scale projects or on essentials of a broader agenda of work, or on projects that are too multifaceted for the client to appreciate and stipulate before testing prototypes.

Photo courtesy of Klean Denmark via Flickr

Selecting the right method to accomplish your plans is a judgment that should be built on necessity, not rhetoric. What works in one organization might not be appropriate for another, or perhaps necessitate reform. Agile project management is no different. What matters is the attainment of the project, not how well it abides by a definite approach.

The product proprietor is accountable for the business facets of the project, comprising assuring the right product is being built, and in the right order. A good product owner can balance competing priorities, is available to the team, and is empowered to make decisions about the product. People who work under agile management form teams to break down tasks to smaller ones. The team itself undertakes agile project management roles when determining how to best attain the product goals initially established by the product owner. Team members will collaboratively resolve which person should work on which tasks, which technical practices are necessary to achieve stated quality goals, and so on.

Notice how productivity has to be reiterated as one of the key essentials of agile management. That is because every organization aims to hone the productivity of its employees in order to come up with better ideas for the success of their undertaking. Hence, why are we all so preoccupied with productivity? It’s possibly because in this digital age, remaining on task and avoiding interruption is harder to realize than your actual work. Not to mention the feeling of a prolific workday is fairly exciting.

This quest for a more productive workday has led to a certain misapprehension about what productivity really is. And it’s never enough that you cross out your tasks one by one you’re your imaginary to do list. Really productive people aren’t absorbed on doing more things; in reality this is the reverse of productivity. You need to make it a point to do less if you really want to be productive. Thus, in agile management, people are expected to make room for increased productivity by putting these habits into play

1. Splitting your to do list into half.  Do you actually need those 20 tasks on your to-do list? Take a less-is-more approach to your to-do list by only concentrating on completing tasks that matter. There is no need to fit in doing as much as possible in the allowed eight hours especially when you are in a team. It is all a matter of shared responsibility.

2. Apply the 80/20 rule. Disregard stuff that doesn’t matter during your workday as they have a trifling effect on your total productivity. For instance, break your succeeding project down into phases and systematically remove tasks until you get down to the 20% that gets the rest of the 80% done. In agile management this is the very key to accomplishing daunting tasks. Most of us have become so adapted to the chronological method that we never even consider breaking down a project and then reconvening it once we’ve finished each piece. But even some things we consider unified are actually made this way.

3. Cut out the tasks. Some projects may be parted out easily, but will have to deal with others a little more cautiously. Either way, once you’ve determined you can divide the project into portions, do so. Hand the pieces out to the people well-matched for them, complete with their own indicators and targets.

4. Put flexibility into practice. You can learn so much about agility by observing your own body parts. The reason your bones and muscles are connected is for you to able to move easily. Poor build of bones and muscles is just not acceptable. As mentioned in an article on agile management from The Productivity Pro.  “A project built from many independent parts is naturally more flexible than a “waterfall” project, more easily absorbing the need for changes, additional testing, and new features as they arise”. Implementing feedback for this kind of approach is also way easier.

5. Create a productivity inducing scheme. Over the years of constant work, you’ve probably developed a few productivity-distracting practices or any software project. Be able to manage your disrupting ways by creating a system. Avoid doing stuff compulsively.  Plan a morning, afternoon, and evening time slot to manage your tasks. Otherwise, you’ll get distracted from accomplishing more immediate goals all throughout the day.

6. Place stuff back together. As separate sections of the project come in, slowly slide them in their rightful place; do not forget to leave space for the later bits. It’s an integrated process, letting greater flexibility in terms of time, distribution of resources, and budgeting. This necessitates careful planning and groundwork, even more so than the traditional approach to management; ultimately, not only does it save time, it makes your decision-making stress-free and eradicates waste, as you don’t have to wait to see the end result before you can take away a few things and insert better ideas to improve the product.

Productivity lives by the principle. “Less is more”. It is never bad to stick with the basics and avoid complicating what confronts your organization.


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