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Put agile values and principles into practice

When it comes to establishing agile work, the topic of agile values and principles must not go unmentioned. First of all: This article focuses on the agile values! If you want more information about the agile principles, look best into the original source.

More specifically, it's even about the agile Scrum values, not the 4 values in the agile manifesto. What are agile values? We have some examples or behavioral anchors for you to reflect on in an Agile Values Scrum Team Scrum Game or Agile Values Workshop. Below you will find the button for the Agile Values Game (as I said, it is not an Agile Values and Principles Game, the latter will not be discussed).

Many of the advantages of agility come from the fact that employees develop an agile mindset and use the freedom of the methods to make an active contribution.

The two co-signers of. Offer a good basis for developing this mindset and reflecting it on the team Agile manifestos Ken Schwaber and Kent Beck with the definition of their agile values and principles.

Before I explain them, a brief note: In this post we elaborate on which Agile principles are the most important agile principles based on our experiences.

Agile values and principles - concrete anchors of behavior

The agile values first describe in a relatively abstract manner which points should be implemented at the value level in the team. In order to make the whole thing as concrete as possible, we have formulated specific behavioral anchors for you here that can help you to check your current working methods.

Agile values 1: Commitment

Willingness to commit to a goal.

  • I can keep my goals and commitments well.
  • We as a team have a common goal that drives us.
  • It is important to me to successfully implement the project.

Agile values 2: simplicity

Choose the simplest technical solution to provide the greatest possible benefit and value for the user.

  • We regularly reflect on our work to ensure that we create the simplest solution with the greatest added value.
  • Sometimes we spend a lot of time on things that we should have saved or solved more easily.
  • Before we implement a solution in a team, we first try to find the best solution to the problem.

Agile values 3: Focus

Focus all of your efforts and skills on working on your commitments.

  • It is easy for me to concentrate on my core work.
  • My workplace is free from gross distractions.
  • I have enough space for breaks in which I can draw new energy.

Agile values 4: Communication:

Everyone on the team communicates with each other every day and works together to find the best solution to our problem.

  • In my team, information quickly reaches decision-makers.
  • Everyone in my team knows who is currently working on what.
  • There are situations when it is difficult to work together in a team.

Agile values 5: Feedback

Show project results early and often, get the feedback on it and adapt your approach accordingly.

  • In our team, we regularly ask for constructive feedback.
  • I get useful feedback on how well I am doing and how I can improve.
  • My colleagues often ask me for feedback to get food for thought.
  • There is a trusting working atmosphere in our team.

Agile values 6: respect

People are shaped by their background and experience. It is important to respect the different people that make up a team.

  • The team values my contribution to the team goals.
  • Team members appreciate the talents and skills of their colleagues.
  • If someone in the team makes a mistake, that means no loss of face for him.

Agile values 7: courage

Tell the truth about project progress and your estimates. Be brave to make commitments, act focused, be open, and treat each other with respect.

  • In our team I can also ask “stupid” questions without fear of anything.
  • It is easy for me to address difficult or controversial topics in my team.
  • We also communicate negative events transparently in the team and beyond.

Agile values 8: Openness

Timely & transparent information is available to everyone. Create an environment in which truth and honesty are given a safe space.

  • We are ready to question our usual practices.
  • All team members receive relevant information promptly.
  • Information is passed on unfiltered in our team.
 By the way, you can reflect on these statements or behavioral anchors in our Retro Tool Echometer. It is basically an online "Agile Values Game" or workshop. Just click on the button and off you go.

5 Agile Values Health Check Team Radar

Note: This retrospective format asks for agreement with the given Health Check items on a scale.

Team Radar Tool Health Check Retrospective
  • Courage: We value people showing courage.
  • Respect: We value each other’s ideas, even when disagreeing.
  • Commitment: Every team member is committed to follow through on what they have promised.
  • Focus: We don’t allow ourselves to be distracted from reaching the sprint goal.
  • Openness: We are open to constructive feedback and grow from it.

Agile values and principles - start now!

As I said: More information about the agile principles can be found in the original source, the agile manifesto.

Hopefully the agile values workshop or the agile values game gave you and your team a little inspiration. 

Exactly the reflection of the agile values and principles is the subject that we at Echometer are committed to. With our Retro tool you can continuously query topics such as agile values anonymously, to then reflect on them together in the team and to derive appropriate measures.

If this could be interesting for your team, please contact us & start with one free trial!
PS: Are you in the process of introducing team retrospectives in teams that are still inexperienced? To establish agile values and principles first? Then we have here 3 tips on how to introduce retros can succeed 🙂

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Try the Spotify Health Check Retrospective!

First question: "😍 We love going to work, and have great fun working together."

Sounds interesting? Try the format in our retro tool:

I just finished my ebook „12 psychology-based retrospective methods“ – Interested?

Christian Heidemeyer, Psychologist & Scrum Master