A friend of mine told me about an organisation in trouble: They were too firmly attached to their processes to improve when needed. The strict process that was followed? Agile (Scrum to be specific).
I’m sorry if I just caused some of you to swallow your coffee down the wrong pipe, but it’s true: Using an agile process the wrong way can give exactly the same problems as the agile movement try to extinguish.
The reason that this occurs is that most articles teaching agile practices (including my own) are very prescriptive. Do this! Don’t do that!
For beginners that’s great and that’s what they need, but for teams that have some experience it is time to bend the rules when needed. The best way to describe this that I’ve found is Shu Ha Ri. The term originates from Aikido, but is frequently used within the agile community to describe the different phases of agile adaption.