Roadmap: How to Adopt the Shared Vision Practice
This roadmap describes how to adopt the Shared Vision practice.
Main Description

Getting started

Creating a shared vision involves understanding and agreeing on the fundamental "what" and "why" of the product under development. This ensures that stakeholders and the development team have a common understanding of the problem to be solved, and understand the stakeholders' needs.

Begin by reviewing the reference material associated with this practice to better understand the intent of the practice. Review the template for the Vision to understand the information that it captures. Tailor the template for the specific needs of the project. Review the Develop Technical Vision task to understand what needs to be done to capture and communicate the vision. Review the guidelines on requirements gathering techniques and requirements reviews associated with the Develop Technical Vision task, and select the appropriate technique(s) for the project. Educate the development team and relevant stakeholders on the purpose of this practice, and get buy-in on the techniques that will be used to establish and maintain a shared vision.

This practice is related to many other useful practices. For example:

  • Requirements practices: the vision is one of the outcomes of stakeholder requests elicitation. It is also the primary input for developing more fine-grained technical requirements. Stakeholders and the development team use the vision to provide the context and high-level objectives for the detailed technical requirements.
  • Architecture practices: the vision outlines the high-level objectives and constraints for the system that inform architectural design decisions.
  • Project management practices: the vision defines the scope and constraints of the project that are the basis for work prioritization and initial estimates of effort. The value delivered by the team at each milestone must align with stakeholders' expectations, expressed by the project vision.

Common pitfalls

Rushing into a solution before the problem is understood. The result is typically a system that fails to solve stakeholder problems and satisfy stakeholder needs. Avoid design while capturing the vision. Focus on the "what" and "why" of the product, rather than detailing the solution. Detailed technical requirements will be developed later, in conjunction with architectural design and trade-off analysis.

Failure to gain agreement on the problem to be solved. Make sure that you have identified all stakeholders, captured their needs and wishes, and obtained agreement on the problem to be solved and associated constraints. Missing a critical stakeholder can result in significant re-work later.

Failure to manage scope. Rome was not built in a day (or in a single project). Make sure that you capture stakeholder needs and features, and prioritize them to deliver as much value as early as possible. If the estimated effort is too great to commit to for a single external release, divide and conquer. The product vision may span more than one release of the product, providing a roadmap for future work, as well as work planned for the current project.