A couple of days ago, I left the office thinking about what to write for this piece and put on a podcast for inspiration: Slowing Down, from TED Radio Hour.
There I was, trying to articulate a blog post in my head about adopting lean, streamlined and super-efficient methodologies; and learning about people who have been successful doing the opposite instead. Procrastinating, even.
Take Warby Parker, for example. The company planned to sell glasses online but didn’t have a working website until the day of launch. The founders had spent 6 months just to come up with the name. They’re a successful business now and probably worth a billion or two.Adam Grant, who talked about Warby Parker at TED, described them as ‘Originals’, people who often give themselves plenty of time and space to nurture their dreams. They are not afraid to fail, retry, and try over again – and eventually succeed.
But how does this ‘Original’ idea reconcile with what most start-up gurus tell us about striving to be lean and agile? How about getting a Minimum Viable Product out of the door ASAP? Incidentally, you’ll find a ton of podcasts about these, too.
Let’s not forget that brand, creativity, and corporate culture are critical factors of a successful business. They are developed and nurtured over time and can’t be fast-tracked via an Agile process.
Anna Pavlova, a Russian ballerina in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, said a couple of things that, I think, can help us connect the dots:
Master technique and then forget about it and be natural. Where there is no heart, there is no art.
Therefore, go ahead and master Agile techniques so that… requirements and solutions evolve through the collaborative effort of self-organizing cross-functional teams and their customer/end users.
But add creativity and passion to your backlog too. It’s okay to slow down, reflect or even procrastinate once in a while.
And I suspect that this is what happened with Elementor. They were able to get from zero to 400K downloads in a year, while never compromising on their mission to deliver a great product.
Agile is the flavor of the month here at WP Hosting and we’re publishing a series of posts on the subject matter, starting with Corey Maas’ contribution: KanbanWP for Agile WordPress Development (And Much More).
Corey decided to build a Kanban plugin when he discovered there weren’t any for WordPress, and the end result is akin to having Trello on your dashboard. A very good thing.
We’ll be featuring stories from customers, WordPress developers and writing up about our own ‘agile’ efforts, too. We encourage our readers to contribute their own piece. Just get in touch and I’ll send through our guidelines and let you know what content we’re looking for.
As I draw this editorial to a close, let me tell you about something else in the Slowing Down podcast that caught my attention – The Bergen Line to Oslo minute by minute video. It’s over 7 hours of footage covering an entire train ride, that’s quite ‘un-agile’ thing you can get.
About the author
Lawrence is Marketing Manager at WP Hosting, a father of two, half Italian, half Australian and half Hungarian, AS Roma fan, keen futsal player and addicted to popcorn.