Recently read a really great post by Jade Rubrick on Great engineering teams focus on milestones instead of projects. Recently my team at Venmo decided to switch to kanban in order to deal with constantly changing requirements. Across the organization, historically we've been pretty terrible at managing the scope and controlling for risk of projects. We claim to be agile but we're actually still delivering things as a waterfall. The next step for our team, and is a complement to the flexbility of kanban, is to truly adopt the mindset of iterative value delivery as discussed in this article.
Some key highlights from the blog post:
- Work feels meaningful when you’re delivering value to the world. People develop a sense of momentum and confidence, which helps bond a team together and develop an ability to critique and improve each other.
- With milestones, you have natural stopping places every one to three weeks. This means teams can change their priorities and it won’t feel like a thrash to do so. And because some value was delivered, it doesn’t feel like your work is being wasted.
- A team that is constantly delivering small units of value earns the trust of the people around it. Instead of a huge thing every three to six months, you see a steady stream of value.