The Agile Man-Month, Part III

Project Scope

Sometimes the management tends to see a project as a monolithic unit of work. The thing is either complete or it’s not. While this is often true for buildings and cars, most software can be easily broken down into pieces and prioritized in various ways. You sometimes achieve a big impact with just a small set of carefully chosen features. Other times you need more than that, but it’s very rare that you need all the features in order to have a usable product.

It turns out during man-month tennis matches between developers and the management this is rarely considered in its true glory. It does get some attention, of course – when the estimate comes out a bit more than desirable and something needs to get removed from the list. Once that’s done, however, the warm and fuzzy feeling of being somewhat in control can finally settle in.

But you’re too agile to get sucked into that and surely remember to expect a few surprises down the road.

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