What would an ESI Top Ten PM Trends for 2014 look like if ESI didn’t have some mention of Agile development and project management as part of it? Well, this year is no exception. This year, though, the focus is on Asia, and specifically Singapore, Japan and Hong Kong.
I have many colleagues in Asia (ESI’s Asian headquarters is in Singapore, a country I’ve traveled to more than 20 times while working for ESI) and they tell me that information technology project managers (ITPM) in this vast region are acutely aware of Agile but they want to know more. In fact, they want to know a lot more!
Certainly there are pockets of excellent practice of Agile; but, in fact, there’s a lot of resistance to implementing Agile as well. And, what’s interesting is this resistance isn’t just coming from middle managers, who some have called the great “unwashed” who everyone likes to blame everything on.
No, the resistance, surprisingly enough, is coming from practicing project managers as well as from PMO heads and the reason is they firmly believe Agile is just a fad. Just another “flavor of the month” as the old saying goes. Well, I don’t know about you, but in my opinion, anything that’s been around for more than 10 years is NOT a fad. Justin Bieber, he’s a fad (and at the rate he’s self-destructing he might not last more than another year or two!)
ITPMs in the region really know that in order for Agile to be successful they need very serious and committed buy-in by their executives, they need to select the best projects for their Agile pilots, and they need a support mechanism, such as a center of excellence for the Agile framework.
They’re trying very, very hard to overcome these obstacles because they realize Agile has a lot to offer. In fact, there’s a lot of promise. Therefore, they are doing everything they can to make it happen.
To all of these folks who are trying so hard to put Agile into practice in the face of such resistance, recalcitrance and intransigence, I can only say these three words of support:
Vaya con Dios!
The above post is an expanded version of one of ESI’s Top Ten Trends for 2014. See all the PM Top Trends here.
The views expressed in this post are the author’s. They have neither been reviewed or approved by ESI International.