How to Have A Very Merry Agile Christmas!

Christmas Party planning

How to have a Very Merry Agile Christmas!

Struggling with planning that family Christmas dinner or lunch?

Can’t decide who to buy presents for?

How about using some agile project management methods to help solve your Christmas dilemmas and reduce stress!

An Agile Christmas Dinner

When planning your menu start with some simple “users stories” to help define you requirements. Write them down to help solidify them in your mind. Try using the following AgilePM and AgileBA methods format;

  • As a ….<role>
    • I need .. <requirements>
      • so that … <Benefits> [1]

As the Christmas dinner host I need to have a traditional European Christmas dinner so that my guests enjoy a traditional Christmas atmosphere.
As the Christmas lunch host I need to have a quintessential Australian Christmas lunch with prawns on the BBQ so that I can show off my new outdoor kitchen and my tong master skills.

You can then plan details to achieve the requirements and have a Very Merry Agile Christmas.

Christmas Present MUST Haves!

Working with a tight Christmas present budget and too many people to try and please? Who do you buy for and how much do you spend?

Prioritising can be difficult at the best of time but can be a nightmare when it can potentially damage an important personal relationship.

The AgilePM MoSCoW[1] method can help with this. It stands for MUST haves, Should haves, Could haves and Won’t haves this time. Where MUST stands for Minimum Usable SubseT.

It requires a context to work within, which in this case could be “continuing good/strong relationships after Christmas for a happy life”

  • MUSTs are those people and relationships that if they were to fail would cause your life to be a disaster. They MUST be bought a present and kept happy.
  • Should haves would include people that are important and life would be difficult without but could be worked around or eventually repaired.
  • Could haves would be relationships that you would like to maintain but if they failed it would not have a great impact on your life.
  • Won’t haves are those people that you know you do not need to keep happy by buying Christmas presents so will not worry about this Christmas.

So now you can start buying presents for your MUSTs, they will all need a present so you can now divide your budget across them. If you satisfy all your MUSTS and still have budget left over then you can start buying presents for the Should haves. At some point you will run out of budget, you may not be able to buy presents for all the should and coulds, this is expected, they are the risk contingency. This is how MoSCoW is designed to work.

Good luck applying these techniques this year and have a Very Merry Agile Christmas!

Best wishes from all the team at LASTA Learning Service!

Lachlan Mollison – General Manager and Agile Christmas Grinch


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