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Fundamentals of Agile Project Management: An Overview

By
Marcus Goncalves
Marcus Goncalves
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Raj Heda
Raj Heda
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ISBN:
9780791802960
No. of Pages:
114
Publisher:
ASME Press
Publication date:
2010

While managers designed traditional methodologies in an effort to control projects, the technical community gave birth to agile methodologies in response to their frustrations with traditional management (or lack thereof), and the resulting collision of their methods, products, and morals have generated a few trends and camps. For example, the principles of XP are focused almost entirely on the development process. While the technical community has championed these principles, very little has been written about the management side of agile development projects. The implication is that there is little need for a project manager since XP teams develop and monitor their own tasks. No wonder that corporate management has been skeptical of agile methodologies and slow to embrace them.

At the same time, Project Management Institute (PMI) membership has been growing fast, and the demand for Project Management Professional (PMP) Certification is on a near vertical ascending demand. PMI's Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK) guideline is now in its fourth version and has become a de facto standard in the industry, establishing a strong camp in the area of project management best practices. Meanwhile, in another camp, managers conjure up an image of a room full of developers doing their own thing…. and the name “eXtreme” doesn't help matters either.

Regardless of the particular trend, camp, or methodology, the traditional project manager is often seen as a “taskmaster” who develops and controls the project plan that documents (in excruciating detail, under the PMBOK) the tasks, dependencies, and resources required to deliver the end product. The project manager then monitors the status of tasks and adjusts the plan as necessary. Underpinning this mechanistic approach is the assumption that equates individuals to interchangeable, controllable commodities.

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