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Agile Estimating and Planning by Mike Cohn

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Chapter 2. Why Planning Fails

“No plan survives contact with the enemy.”

—Field Marshal Helmuth Graf von Moltke

The previous chapter made the argument that the purpose of planning is to arrive iteratively at an optimized answer to the ultimate new product development question of what should be developed. That is, what capabilities should the product exhibit, in what timeframe, and with which and how many resources? We learned that planning supports this by reducing risk, by reducing uncertainty about what the product should be, by supporting better decision making, by establishing trust, and by conveying information.

Unfortunately, the traditional ways in which we plan projects often let us down. In answering the combined scope/schedule/resources ...

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