How Can We Release Innovation in Software Development? (Leveraging “Laws”)

Pendulums swing between extremes. Agile started out as a freewheeling movement in which there was little place for either management or for “laws;” i.e., cause-and-effect relationships like gravity-and-falling. Everything was to be invented by the “self-directed team,” which, it was assumed, would be more innovative as a result and would always end up doing things the best way.

However, nature, science, and history all tell us there are things to be learned without reinventing the wheel…without breaking the strengths that make Agile so effective.

You can’t get away from the rules, but you can learn them and use them.  This holds true both for the rules of software development, as well as those for how organizations work.

All that being said, the common adage of “rules are meant to be broken” also holds truth. There are times you are willing to violate rules to achieve a particular result. But rules are also meant to be understood before they are broken.