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John P. Reiling: Getting Ahead: Do You Have an “Agile” Project Management Mindset?

Some professionals estimate that by the end of this year, as many as 80% of applicatilon development projects will be executed using Agile methods. The Project Management Institute (PMI) has a new and very popular Agile Certified Practitioner (ACP) certification.

How can you keep up and even get ahead of this trend?

The answer is that it starts on a personal basis – with your beliefs, attitudes, and general approach. You need to develop an “agile mindset”, especially related to managing your projects.

Agile is more than a method of managing projects, and developing an “agile mindset” may require a paradigm shift for you. If you are a
PMP, this may seem a bit disturbing…but actually it can fit
perfectly well with the PMP approach.

To explore the idea of getting into the agility mindset, I Googled
“agility training”. The results included a mixture of personal
speed and quickness training for humans, but I was surprised to see even more on training for dogs! Here are the key words in the results of my Google search:

  • Speed
  • Competition
  • Quickness
  • Performance
  • Breakaway Action
  • Agility Exercises
  • Agility Drills

Now…let’s explore the relationship between Agile and Project Management…

I said above that it starts with your own “agile mindset”…so take a minute or two to rate yourself – to evaluate your own mindset for “agility”, or propensity to utilize agile methods in managing your projects.

Rate yourself on a scale from 1 (more rigid, less agile) to 5 (more
agile, less rigid) on each of the five factors below.

 

    1. Project Planning – Detailed up front (1) vs Series of S/T deliveries (5)

 

    1. Project Execution – Deliver as planned (1) vs Client-driven delivery (5)

 

    1. Project Scheduling – Defined, activity based (1) vs Short duration delivery (5)

 

    1. Change Management – Protect scope (1) vs Team manages change (5)

 

  1. Customer Management – Contract focus (1) vs Customer part of team (5)

 

Obviously, the higher your score, the more agile-oriented your thinking is – and the more oriented your are to the agile approach to project management. And the lower it is, the more adjusting you need to do to get yourself into an agile mindset.

Project Management Training Online now has Agile ACP training – formal online training in Agile Project Management to prepare for the PMI’s new Agile certification, and also earn over 21 Category A PDUs.

To learn more about the PMI’s Agile certification, see the
Agile Project Management certification page at Project Management Training Online.

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John Reiling, PMP

PM Training Online

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