Agile is STILL A Dirty Word

Methodology & Culture

Last year at Devoxx UK I presented "Agile is a Dirty Word". It started at Devoxx Belgium then took on a life of its own as it became my most consistently successful and enjoyable talk with a mixture of dry humour, real life anecdotes and tales of dysfunctional business that every audience can relate to.

When I first gave that talk it was intended as a bit of a lament against all the bad implementations of Agile that I've come across in my career as a consultant and I touched upon a couple of techniques that I was experimenting with at the time.

A year on and I have put into practice some of my own suggested techniques and I've been involved in some stunningly successful transformation work.

This talk is not just a lament against dysfunction (although there will be a bit of that still) but it is now a playbook of practical steps that can be used to effect lasting change in any organisation.


James Birnie


James has worked in software since the 1990s, when TDD was something you studied but never did, Agile and Lean were words used to describe athletes and pipelines were for carrying oil. After working in a startup for 9 years he started a new life as a consultant and now spends his working days at Codurance trying (and occasionally succeeding) to effect positive organisational change through enabling others to deliver high quality products.