Agile as Religion: When Even Founders are Heathen
Finally: once individuals become familiar with Agile, either through training or practice, they can become inflexible and intolerant of people new to the process. Cockburn has seen this in action. "I'm one of the authors of the manifesto, so if I say something 'weird,' they can't tell me I don't understand Agile.
But if someone else- and it doesn't matter how many years of experience they have-says something funny, they get told they don't understand Agile." That makes Cockburn gnash his teeth. "They can't yank my club card, but they can pretend you don't have one," he says.
Sometimes Agile principles are grossly misinterpreted, according to Cockburn. "I get called in by a CIO, CTO, any CXO, and they're suffering because their programmers are telling them 'You don't know anything about Agile. Agile means we don't have to give you a plan, Agile means we don't need an architecture'-a whole bunch of rubbish that isn't in the Agile manifesto."
So Cockburn, or people like him, have to come in and tell the CIO that it's okay to ask for a plan and an architecture. "But it takes me to come and do it," Cockburn says. "If anyone else says it, they get told that they're just an old fuddy-duddy, [and that] they don't know anything about Agile."