Skip to main content



“You can’t be pro pizza and anti-gluten.” Jimmy Kimmel

gluten-free agile In a recent skit on the “Jimmy Kimmel Live” show, random people in LA who were on gluten-free diets were asked to define what gluten actually was. It became tragically comic when nearly all the people quizzed had no idea. We are too willing to make radical changes to our bodies without really knowing why…  Are organizations doing the same thing with Agile?  Don’t get me wrong… I have a family member with celiac disease that has painstakingly removed gluten from her diet. You can’t walk down a grocery aisle these days without seeing the word “gluten free” proudly printed across labels of all sorts on shelves.  Gluten-Free has become mainstream and accepted into society as a norm.  I recall going out to lunch recently with friends and one person was on a gluten free diet. “Lunch would be great,” he said, but he couldn’t eat white grains, sugar, meat, dairy or salt. “Rice and fish are okay,”  We ended up going to a local favorite Thai restaurant.  He had celiac disease and understood the consequences if he ate gluten.

gluten-free agileRipping the label off   Like gluten free, everyone tosses around the word “Agile”so readily from the boardroom to the server room. A recent Google search returned about 19,000,000 results from the word Agile. Tensions abound when the values in the manifesto are incongruent to conventional ways of working. This has lead to interesting discourse. Big A vs little ‘a’ Agile, Agile is Dead, Flaccid Scrum, Taking Agile Back, Consumer Agile just to name a few…   Has the “A” word gone viral?  Some folks have ceased using a label altogether, resulting in new and effective patterns of work context. What might happen if we ripped the label off and began to focus on effective ways of working?  Does a label obligate us to exploring new ways of working?

Next Agile Assessments

Comments (2)

  1. Tim Wise

    I hear Big A and Little “a” Agile referred to often now. Also, let’s add Lean Startup to the mix as well! It seems so silly. Why are we here and what are we trying to accomplish is what I focus in on.

    I liked your comparison to gluten diets. As for ripping the label off… I enjoy ripping it off. I am solving a problem not defining words :)

  2. Derek Huether

    To jump on the dog pile, I’ve heard of “Agile Free” Agile. That’s right. A friend was burned by an Agile implementation. Because he knew there was value in it but knew he would be strung up if he muttered the framework that shall now be named, he just called it…”Project Management”.

    It reminded me of my son eating cookies that had vegetable puree in them. He loved them, they were “good” for him, but damned if we were going to tell him what that stuff was that was making them so moist and yummy.

    Ignorance is bliss.


Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *