Agile does not mean delivering faster. Agile does not mean fewer defect or higher quality. Agile does not mean higher productivity. Agile means agile – the ability to move with quick easy grace, to be nimble and adaptable. To embrace change and become masters of change – to compete through adaptability by being able to change faster than your competition can.
Perhaps faster delivery and higher quality will be achieved with an agile method such as Scrum, but it is vital for business and engineering leaders to appreciate that the raison d’être of agile methods is… agility. Furthermore, it is vital to appreciate that organizational agility cannot be achieved by a development team in isolation – it is a system challenge for organizational redesign. Especially when you are interested in large-scale Scrum within an R&D department of thousands, where each product group may have 200 or 700 people distributed in two or five sites around the world. If an engineering team has the technical capacity to adapt or change quickly, but requirements management, legal practices, product management, HR policies, site strategies, and deployment processes all emphasize rigidity, conformance to original plans, conformance to the status quo, and slow practices, then how can there be real agility?
Source: “Scaling Lean & Agile Development – Thinking and Organizational Tools for Large-Scale Scrum”, Craig Larman & Bas Vodde, Addison-Wesley