Agility and sustainability? 

 March 6, 2023

"Keep it simple! It's so easy to start with sustainability"

Richard Seidl

When I look at the software development projects that I have come across in recent years through the lens of sustainability, I see one thing above all: little to nothing. Sustainability appears at most in the decision for tools, in small doses in the choice of technology, but it is then faded out at the latest in the process design.

Can agile be sustainable?

Now, of course, you can complain: "Ha, but if I'm agile, then I'm only consciously looking at the next few weeks - short cycles and such - I CAN'T be sustainable!" But I think this purely methodical view of agility is too short-sighted. For me, there is a canon of values behind agility - and nowadays sustainability is part of it!
Well, we want to live sustainability in the agile context. But where should we start? We don't have to look far, because our neighbor Lean with waste avoidance has a great lever in its repertoire!

Keep it simple, stupid!

Even more concrete: The credo is to keep things simple. KISS - Keep it simple, stupid! Or in other words from Antoine de Saint-Exupéry: "Perfection is not achieved when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to leave out."
Oh, and there's still a lot of room for improvement, isn't there? Countless, redundant meetings. Bloated applications. Implemented features that no one needs. Overloaded development processes.
If we were to start cleaning up, clearing out, and cutting back on old habits,
would gradually free up huge amounts of resources. Not only in the teams, but also in the infrastructure and the organization. Quite sustainable, isn't it? But this requires another agile value: courage. And? Is this being lived? Perhaps there could be a little more of it....
With this in mind - go for it: courageously towards sustainability!