Way back in January I posted a plan to write about Agile planning (see the entry here: http://wp.me/p2BePD-3x). It was supposed to be a ten-part series that I hoped to complete in 3-4 months. The basic outline I wanted to cover in this set of posts was as follows:
- What’s so hard about Agile planning?
- The planning onion (or is it a flame?)
- Listening to the market – outside in
- Product roadmaps
- When worlds collide: functionality that impacts across products
- Sprint planning: how much is too much (or too little)?
- Incorporating code refactoring and addressing technical debt
- The pull mentality versus pushing
- Incorporating new feedback between and within sprints
- Planning for today – would Kanban help?
- Context is crucial but planned work should be in small chunks: Tell me a (short) story
- Use the retrospective to improve future planning
Almost a year later and I have completed only the first six of these topics. Some of them have been two- or three-part posts, and I have also written about a few other things. But mostly I have been much busier than expected (with work and with fun outside interests). I mentioned that the lack of an editor has slowed me down a bit, and the fact that I have received some mixed messages about how useful folks are finding my blog has not been very motivating. It’s also true that I have found it challenging to refine and articulate some of my thinking around Agile planning. It really is true that I find this stuff less simple than it might appear and I want to share the complexities that I am wrestling with.
Even as I plan to restructure this blog to include additional areas of interest for me, I still want to wrap up with series. My thoughts on incorporating feedback are almost complete so hopefully I will get this out before being completely swamped by the holidays. Then early next year I will write about the final three topics and incorporate them into the new format of my blog.
As I have started writing again I am rediscovering my enjoyment in it. I have also appreciated some fresh ‘likes’ and ‘follows’ from other folks out there; knowing that someone is reading this blog makes a huge difference in my energy level as a writer. So stay tuned for the last few posts in my Agile planning series and get ready for some more new things on this blog. I hope you’ll enjoy reading it as much as I like writing it, but I know that in truth it’s not that simple.