This is a super interesting discussion that I have seen over and over again. To be very honest my answer is “YES”, and I will explain to you why.
Yesterday on my Facebook travels I saw this message on an agile group :
Of course just because it is on Facebook in a forum or on the internet doesn’t make it so. And as I said before, my opinion differs from the person commenting on the post. So why do I think differently?
If we go to the source, the manifesto for agile software development, there is nothing that says that the project manager role cannot exist. So that one solves it, but we can go further.
If we pick up one of the practices that we consider “agile” like for example Kanban, we can find roles besides the development team.
Kanban comes from Toyota and the Toyota Production System, where they build cars and have roles as Line Manager and Supervisor. So why say these roles don’t exist?
I think this misconception comes from associating “agile” with just Scrum. Yes, Scrum is a framework that follows the manifesto, but it’s not the other way around. And yes, in Scrum there is no room from Project Managers, there are only 3 roles that are needed to build a product.
What are your thoughts about having PM’s in agile projects?