I was reading about the new iteration of SAFe that came out a few days ago. I appreciate what Dean is doing with SAFe and totally get the problem he is trying to solve. That said, it makes me wonder how folks receive the ever growing complexity of the model.
Fundamentally, we have two choices as leaders of companies.
We can model and manage the complexity inherent in the system, or we can reduce that complexity. What we can’t do is pretend the complexity doesn’t exist and fail to do something about it. So often I see agile implementations that want to ignore what’s really going on.
This is too complex, agile is supposed to be simple.
True, but agile is also supposed to be 6-8 people sitting in a room with an onsite customer. Teams are supposed to have autonomy. Teams are supposed to have the power to decide. Teams are supposed to have the ability to change direction when they learn new stuff.
You can’t have your cake and eat it too.
It’s naive to think that three roles, three ceremonies, three artifacts are going to fix everything in your organization. It’s naive to think that you can self-organize the complexity away. It’s naive to think that companies are going to stop caring about when and how stuff is going to get done.
So again, we come back to two fundamental choices for making all this work. Model and manage the complexity in the system, or make the system less complex. It’s your call.