“Practice to be perfect” is perhaps one of the most used sentences when it comes to learning new skills. And is that always the case? Do we really have to be perfect?
The agile way of working gives us the answer to this question.
If the team agrees on a definition of the finished product or service (Definition of Done), too much practice and repetition can be considered a waste of time. So what is the level of a job well enough done? One of the most used tools for assessing the maturity of teams, and thus its effectiveness, is SHU-HA-RI.
SHU is the acquisition of basic skills. The team is gathered around a project, gets to know each other and organizes its activities. The team deals with the adoption of rules and procedures, learns how to work. This can be compared to learning the letters before you start writing. If you were to equate the process with making a lasagna, the SHU phase would be to do everything according to the recipe. If you are missing an ingredient, you will not be able to make the lasagna.
HA phase is when it is assumed that you have mastered all the necessary processes. Within these processes, the team finds its own ways to work best and creates a framework in which not all rules have to be strictly adhered to as long as the same product or service is obtained for the outcome of the process. In the case of preparing a lasagna, it would mean that you are experienced enough that in case you are missing an ingredient, you will relatively easily find a replacement for it. You still have your lasagna.
RI is mastery in something you have practiced and done every day. You now create the processes and procedures yourself to get the best product that suits your customer. And it may not even look like the original idea. You are free enough to change everything to create the greatest value for the user. In the case of lasagna, you set out to make lasagna, but you got inspired and created some dish of your own and amazed the guests.
Working agile means working with balance. That balance should be created both for yourself and for the project in which you are currently engaged. It is necessary to take into account at all times, whether what you are doing brings the greatest value to the user. If the answer is no, stop doing that. Don’t try to be maximally efficient for something that doesn’t bring value to the client. You strive to create a product or service that always brings the greatest value to the user, no matter how imperfect that product or service may be in the beginning.
Be a master at creating value.