My Agile Life: The Project Doesn’t Matter

(This column is posted at, Steve’s LinkedIn, and Steve’s Tumblr)

More on my use of “Agile” and Scrum in my life!

So this is going to sound weird, but one thing I realized in Agile practice, and my own use of the Agile technique of Scrum (with a touch of Kanban), is that the Project isn’t the most important thing.

Yes, I know, heresy. Projects are books, right? Projects are art, true? Projects are games, correct? I talk Projects all the time.

No. A book, a piece of art, a game is a product. Products deliver value to the customer and that’s what matters.

Projects are ways to get things done, to produce products, a useful conceptual tool, but that’s it.  The idea of a Project helps you complete a Product that has value.

Yeah, let that sink in. All your planning, all your schemes, everything are secondary to the result. Think it’s hard for you? I’m a guy with a ton of certifications on the subject of Project Management. In short, I actually have certifications on the second most important thing.

Except this is liberating. I don’t have to take Projects seriously or any other organizational tool.  All that matters is if this concept, this idea, this tool, this idea helps deliver value.  That’s it.

This is where Agile as a mindset shines. It’s outright saying that your goal is a result.  That’s it.  Everything else is just a tool on the way to the result.  You only have to care so much.

This is where Agile techniques shine, they’re tools to help you find blockages and get to the results – but like any tool you don’t have to be attached to them. Scrum this year becomes Kanban. This level of Project Breakdown is replaced by another.

I still use the term Project.  It’s useful.  I just don’t have to get invested in it.  It’s all about results.

By the way if you’re focused on Projects and not results – why?  Are the results even worth seeking?

(By the way I do plenty of books for coaching people to improve in various areas, which may also help you out!)

– Steve

Fan To Pro Promotion: New Media Rights

Here at Fan To Pro we want to help YOU become more aware of other projects out there for progeeks like yourself.  Well just as we were discussing how to do this, New Media Rights fell into our lap.  It’s legal assistance for gamers in convenient video form, and they’ve got a fundraiser campaign!  Check it out below!

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Blogs: In which I rethink a few things

In the past, I have stated outright that I do NOT agree with the "everyone should have a blog" approach to blogging.  I've stated everyone should have a personal page(s) and be accessible, and that blogging is good for many, but that the important thing is to have something to show off one's skills and talents – blogging is just one way.

After some thought and discussion, I want to revise my opinion as I didn't quite take it far enough.

First, I still don't think a blog is for everyone – if you don't have anything to say or write, it's not for you (a portfolio may be, a video archive, etc.).  However I do think it's important to have some kind of project going in your life to hone and improve your skills, show them off, and help you network and connect.

The thing that I forgot?  That if you have a project that's not a blog . . . you can still blog about that.

It sounds like a small thing, but I actually think that's important.  Having a blog does get your name out there, does let you connect.  If you blog about a given project you have you get all the benefits of the project – and the benefits of a blog.  A blog still may not be right for you, but I have to say I think I overstated my case earlier.

So keep blogging in mind after all even if it's not something you'd do directly.  It does have a lot of advantages.

– Steven Savage