Agile is not a software method. Agile is a business method.
Due to its popularity as software value delivery method, Agile is strongly associated with the iterative delivery of software and related services. The Agile Manifesto adds to the sense that Agile is a software method, and that could not be further from reality.
The Agile principles are a next iteration of several other operational business models, with some very clear distinctions with their predecessors. Small Group Activities is for example a LEAN / 6 Sigma work method which finds its origins in the famous Toyota Production System (TPS), and inspired the preference of Agile to work in small dedicated teams. The small controlled improvements in short sprints versus long marathons isn’t a Agile invention either. This is what KAISEN and Continuous Improvement are all about.
There are many parallels between Agile and LEAN / 6 Sigma / Continuous Improvement, and that the Agile Manifesto is a software specific manifesto does not change that Agile is a Business Method. It would be a waste of good energy and value creation to restrict the Agile Principles to the development of software!
Dr. ir Johannes Drooghaag – CEO Spearhead Management