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About Calen Legaspi

Calen Legaspi
Calen is CEO and founder of Orange & Bronze Software Labs (http://orangeandbronze.com), an outsourcing, consulting & training firm based in Manila, specializing in Agile Software Development, Spring Framework and Grails. He is an advocate and trainer of Test-Driven Development, Object-Oriented Design, and Domain-Driven Design.

The Importance of Cadence

Thousands of years ago, military thinkers realized that the only way they could effectively move thousands of troops in the battlefield was through cadence. Individual skill and bravery were often defeated by armies that were better coordinated.

The reason we have Sprints or Iterations (however you want to call it) in most Agile methodologies is so that business and development move in a cadence. Regularly scheduled meetings allows development to pace and focus their work such that it can maintain productivity and quality, while business is able to schedule other activities around the cadence.


Things break down when the cadence is disrespected too often. This is often done by the business side. There is always “more important” things to do, such as meetings with customers or bosses. If business skips too many meetings, development moves too far from what business needs, and then it becomes expensive and wasteful to bring things back. If business meets with development at arbitrary times, development loses focus and pace, which drives down productivity and quality.

Often the business people are unable to commit to cadence because the broader organization does not operate at an effective cadence. For an organization to be Agile, i.e. competitive and innovative, it needs to be the whole organization that moves in a well-respected cadence. This includes things like budgeting, revenue targets, and strategic planning.

Published on Java Code Geeks with permission by Calen Legaspi, partner at our JCG program. See the original article here: The Importance of Cadence

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