Don’t standardize MVPs!

I got a question this morning:

We are struggling to define a standard MVP across the teams. Do you guys have any suggestions for us?

One question: why do you need a standard? What problem are you really trying to solve?

I ask because the point of doing MVPs is to support validated learning. It assumes a development process that is based on running experiments to learn things, not on building things to a definition / spec.

Experimentation is inhibited by over-standardization, so you must be wanting to do this for some other reason (probably status reporting or other forms of status). Continue reading “Don’t standardize MVPs!”

Planning with any hope of accuracy

In one sense, units don’t matter at all. In another they are critical. It’s all human psych.

The fundamental problem is a cognitive bias termed the Planning Fallacy. This well-documented bias shows that the human brain, even with training, always estimates outcomes on the information it knows. We have a well-researched, systemic bias that causes us to consistently under-estimate, even when we take this bias into account during estimation.

In the Agile world, we accidentally discovered a system that works around that bias. But most of us don’t know that we’re applying it, and the others don’t see why they should. Continue reading “Planning with any hope of accuracy”