I’ve spent my entire career in automation and technology. During my time spent as a software engineer I saw a BIG shift in how we developed applications.
The difference is better known today as agile vs waterfall. These are development methodologies or the strategy of how we build applications.
Waterfall is the process of building a detailed specification than taking as much time as needed to build the whole application at once.
Agile is the process of iterating more rapidly so instead of all at once, we only build smaller pieces one at a time than review the results.
The advantages of Agile are such that our plans end up being more flexible (agile) and allowing for better results by measuring success along the way. Back in the waterfall days, we ended up with a lot of applications that didn’t go over very well with customers.
As such, agile became the new gold standard for how we write software.
The reason why Agile was so popular is because it allowed us to build momentum for the project to increase the probability of completing it successfully.
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At your firm, you’re probably wrestling with how you convince more senior partners of why they should vote for your plans to bring your firm into the 21st century by updating your processes and technology stack.
The key here is to build momentum by starting with low-hanging fruit first. Select opportunities that will have a high-impact, but require a relatively low-effort to implement. This way, your partners will be able to see more impressive results faster (just like Agile).
If you chose a BIG project that will take a LONG time and a lot of budget to implement your plans are likely to backfire. Put those projects at or near the end of your list for the time being until you’ve built up enough goodwill to make a bigger ask.
PS. If you want to read more about agile vs waterfall.