There is an intersting interview here with Alistair Cockburn. Alistair identifies the phenomena that a lot of shops are calling themselves agile, without really knowing what that means. I certainly get that feeback from people that have moved on from my team to other organizations. A lot of them found that indications that the development team was agilie in interview turned out to be based on pretty flawed notion of what agile is.
Alistair’s points form a fairly good check list to run through when discovering if an organization is agile or trying to be agile. Not everyone gets it right all the time, but I would at least expect an organization that gets agile to know what the correct response is, and be able to tell you how they are working to get there.
Indeed, I would be cautious around any shop that tried to tell people that they were ‘the bomb’ when it came to agile practice. For me, reflection on what is working and what is not is a key part of the agile process, and the hubris to suggest that you are getting it all right, all the time, would seem contrary to agile, or a bad smell.
Alistair says that Crystal is not as used as XP, because it does not have the press. Well, I’m doing my bit to say it is my preferred agile methodology, hopefully more of us will speak out, or more people will look at what Crystal does.