Face To Face Still Matters
Last Friday, Esther Derby wrote a blog entry that struck a nerve. Part of the reason I started this blog is because I see so many people worrying about costs without considering the benefits, or the means without considering (enough about) the ends. Esther’s entry is “Face to Face Still Matters,” and of course it does. Communication and learning take place fact-to-face at such a higher rate than over a phone.
Communication and learning are what we need more of to make the projects more successful.
So, people who want to consider distributed Retrospectives (her particular concern) agree to save a bit on costs and lose some big benefits.
Similarly, if we focus only on the cost side of Agile, or of projects more generally, we are short-changing ourselves and our customers. Almost always we (as business owners or customers) care more about the value delivered than the cost.
ACTION: Don’t ever let anyone talk about cost-savings without also talking about the effect on value delivery. (It is not necessarily a linear or even a direct relationship, but it can be. Reducing costs can significantly reduce the BV delivered or importantly delay its timing.)