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Alternative name(People Management)


People management can be describe as process by which people directs or leads in getting things done according to the culture of the organisation. However, human factors are the key to project success or failure regardless of project methodology that has been choose to execute a project (West and Grant, 2010). Furthermore , stakeholders in projects is made up of people and this include customers, project team and the general public who might have interest in the project. In addition, from conception stage to the commissioning stage of a project people are involved throughout the project life cycle (Augustine and Woodlock,2003). For example, in agile project management when using XP or scrum people are involve throughout the project life cycle .However, since agile takes all the key stakeholders on-board this people needs and wants have to be managed effectively because people have different perception of any given project (Beck,2005). This indicates that human factors is important in every project and must be managed effectively to ensure project success.Furthermore, people management approach in projects is strictly anchored on performance, members’ commitment, and rewards which is based on individuals or teams. People management in application to agile management can be explained as managing planning, process, and control the project life cycle where the people must be actively involved to achieve project success.

Agile values

The agile values involved in people management include XP, manifesto, and scrum value. People management in XP needs effective communication because communication is the key element to every project success. However, in agile management user stories to capture the business objective and all the process involves in deliverables from product backlog to product incremental needs effective people management (Augustine and Woodock,2003).This entails that agile involves more leadership to ensure successful deliverables. Furthermore, people need to be motivated to pair together to ensure that products in each iteration is delivered as planned because capturing customer need or want from the user stories sometimes can be tedious .On the other hand, allowing people to be in control of their project needs courage to ensure successful deliverables. Nevertheless, respecting members of the project team is crucial in every product deliverables because every member might make mistakes and they should corrected assertively. Finally, scrum values and XP is the major value in agile management because of the user involvement the key project developers will have the ability to integrate the process continuously to ensure that the customers’ needs or wants are met (Wang et el,2009). Therefore, this entails that agile values must be respected to ensure that the product aim is achieved.

Agile principles

Agile principle identify include foster alignment and cooperation; encourage emergence and self-organisation and institution learning and adaptation (Augustine and Woodock,2003). Foster alignment and cooperation enables effective collaborative within team members. This indicates that people management in terms of collaboration needs effective leadership to influence people behaviour in a positive way in order to achieve product success. However, encourage emergence and self-organisation requires effective people management in order for individuals to involve in project and improve individual skills for change control for planning iteration(West and Grant,2010). This entails that chaos must occur in project because of human error or technology failure; but agile allows continuous review and incremental change in the project to enhance performance in each iteration .In addition, people management in agile focus on business value and open information because of the user involvement throughout the project life cycle. Finally, institution learning and adaptation helps people management by democratic leadership .In addition, it helps in continually monitoring, learning and adapting to the environment at any iteration .Therefore, people management needs effective leadership in agile to ensure successful deliverables.

Agile practices

The agile practices identify that is applicable to people management include XP, guiding vision and scrum. XP practice involves effective people management because it has to deal with user stories, continuous integration, pair programing and simplicity(Augustineand Woodock,2003). This entails that human management is important in XP practice in order to achieve the project objective. Focusing planning in each iteration using XP practice pair programing is one of the ground rules which needs clear capturing of the user stories for continuous integration. However, scrum makes people management in agile more effective in product deliverables. In addition, when people have access to information they can effectively integrate the information progressively in each iteration .Guiding of vision, enables interaction and adaptation of clear practice in order for the project team to understand their roles and responsibility clearly for quality improvement and this requires effective leadership to achieve successful deliverables from backlog to project increment. Finally, effective leadership is needed to guild the project vision in order to achieve the customer’s expectation and user involvement makes it more flexible. Therefore, this supports the statement that says agile is more of practice, involvement and leadership to ensure effective deliverables.


The traditional approach make people the servant of the project process, indirectly taking charge of the people and it also directly managing people involvement in projects. On the other hand, agile approach makes process the servant of people, agile helps in taking charge of individual’s talent and attitude towards delivering a product and agile is about effective leadership. This entails that in traditional approach people is not allowed to make use of their talent effectively because each phase will finish before another stage starts. In agile approach user stories are used to manage product and services effectively because of its user involvement throughout the project life cycle; it enables the project team and the customers to integrate the process. This explains that people are allowed to take decisions on their project in line with the customers’ expectation. This can only be done through effective leadership and leadership is all about people management allowing individuals to take charge of their products compared to traditional methods. Nevertheless, effective people management enhance agile value, principle and practices throughout the project life cycle to ensure that customer’ needs are met and enable quality management and continuous improvement by allowing individuals to use their talent effectively .Therefore, agile approach is about leading to ensure effective people management while the traditional approach is about managing.

Links from this KA to other KAs

The knowledge area that is related to people management include collaboration, communication, stakeholder, team and value management .However, agile requires effective collaboration with the customer and team members throughout the project life cycle, focus on people management can create better values to the project. Furthermore, effective communication is the major purpose of XP and scrum process in agile because of its user involvement throughout the project life cycle. Nevertheless, team and value management is important in agile because the process allows people to control planning and product deliverables. Therefore, people management is important to ensure agile value, principle and practice is effectively communicated in order to achieve customers want.


Augustine,S., and Woodock,S. (2003) Agile Project Management, CCPACE Report
Beck K.(2005) Extreme Programming Explained: Embrace Change, 2nd edition, Addison Wesley
West, D. and Grant, T. (2010) "Agile Development: Mainstream Adoption Has Changed Agility", Forrester Research.
Meier, J.D, Title: Getting Results the Agile Way: A Personal Results System for Work and Life (Paperback), Publisher: Innovation Playhouse.
Storey, J. (ed.) (2007) Human Resource Management: A critical text, 3rd edition
Wang, X. et al (2009) Where agile research goes, ACM SIGSOFT Software Engineering Notes Page 28 September 2009 Volume 34 Number 5

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