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What is Fragile Agile a.k.a. FrAgile?

Welcome to another Agile101. Today, I'd like to cover 'FrAgile'!

I came across this term and decided to investigate. From what I could gather there is no, one definition for FrAgile, yet most practitioners are aware of it.

Why do some teams achieve great success with Agile, yet others struggle? Is this success/struggle inevitable, part of the process, or cyclical?

Fragile Agile, also known as FrAgile
Fragile Agile, also known as FrAgile

FrAgile: No ups without downs

How an organisation prepares and responds to these ebbs & flows is what really matters. Does one give up and revert back to “old” ways, or do you lean in and work through things?

It appears that any agile transformation will reach a stage where people wonder whether Agile is for them. 2-3 years after the initial shift to Agile appears common.

When Agile Ways of Working are less than ideal

FrAgile is also used when the Agile implementation is suboptimal. This could manifest itself in different ways:

Speed of the delivery over quality of the delivered, corners are cut and mistakes made

  • Teams are not autonomous, can’t prioritise their own work, and are told what to do

  • Experimenting, failing fast, is not encouraged

  • Agile is only seen as a way of Doing, not Being. (See my other post on this)

There is no quick fix to maximising value in a complex world (see my post on VUCA). Yet, Agile methods like scrum seem to make it easier. I’d say stick with it, and prepare for and work through the inevitable challenges.

What are your thoughts?

Here is the original post.


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