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Benefits of Agile vs Waterfall

Published: August 26, 2022

Approaching Agile vs Waterfall

When transitioning from Waterfall to Agile, you’ll find yourself in a three phase process. 

Phase 1: Understanding that Waterfall is outdated and deciding to transition to Agile. Inexperienced IT leaders and business contributors may assume the change to Agile is as simple as turning on a light switch. That everyone will be working in this new methodology and that things will be better from here on out. This will be the eventual outcome but it’s not instantaneous.

Phase 2: Your teams will quickly understand that the Agile transition takes some time. However, inexperienced individuals will assume everything will slowly improve incrementally, and they will eventually be Agile. We like to call this incline “the path of hope.”

Phase 3: Teams tend to enter phase three just as fast as they entered phase two. When an Agile transition starts, things won’t slowly get better. First, they’ll immediately get worse. If you are experiencing this right now, don’t get frustrated. It happens to nearly every organization.


Some people may resist change. Others may be on-board but lack experience to execute their aspect of the agile process. Changes can’t happen in a vacuum so you’ll likely run into sprint crunches and deadlines, causing teams to revert back to what they know to get the job done. 

These aren’t things to be ashamed of but if you’re not careful, they can create a permanent backslide. This third phase is the most critical and one of three outcomes will occur:

  1. Your leadership abandons the Agile transformation and returns to the waterfall methodology. 

  2. Your leadership realizes you’re in a Wagile state and make the effort to completely let go of the waterfall and Agile hybrid. This will allow/force teams to move to an Agile methodology. 

  3. Your leadership holds onto the flawed idea that a hybrid of waterfall and Agile methodologies is the best path forward. This will inevitably create a low performance environment indefinitely… until one of the other two outcomes occurs or the company goes out of business.


Identifying and resolving Wagile

There are a number of symptoms that can help you identify that your teams are currently stuck in the Wagile stage. Our step by step Agile transformation guide will help you spot these symptoms and resolve them for your entire tech team. Reading this blog is the first step on your path to a more collaborative and dynamic development team. 

Download our full guide to receive step by step guidance on how to complete your Agile transformation, identify the symptoms of the Wagile phase, and discover our nine tips to excel at this critical aspect of modern software development.