Post completing a Psychology degree I've found myself in a health-tech startup acting as Research and Development Manager. As there's only three of us in the team, we have hybrid roles and as a result I've been engaging and leading projects somewhat.

I enjoy working in the start-up scene and like the way 'agile' works but wonder do I need a prince background to further my [lack of] understanding? Or would a Agile course (Please link me to one?) be better?

I'm self funding this which sucks but I think is something which should be taken into account.

  • 1
    Are you actually doing Project Management? What duties comprise the "leading projects" role? If you are not managing projects then Prince 2 is not likely to be useful to you. Furthermore Prince 2 is a very different beast to an "Agile" method- They are not really two sides of the same coin- so which is the most useful to you depends on what kind of delivery mechanisms your organisation uses. – Marv Mills Jun 11 '14 at 19:16

Recommendations for stuff like course are usually off topic for most SE sites.

The name Prince2 stands for PRojects IN Controlled Environments. The name itself shows its difficulty in applying to software projects. I have never seen a software project that could be described as a controlled environment. Requirements always change; software development is a process of discovery.

Agile methodologies embrace this change. One of the points from the Agile Manifesto:

Responding to change over following a plan

It's not that it doesn't allow for planning, but it values allowing change more.

Even if your projects are more controlled, I would suggest that it is too heavyweight for three people. For example, there are a lot of roles and you would be unlikely to fill all of them, so you'd probably end up having to apply the method quite ad-hoc.

In terms of for a beginner, I'd recommend Scrum to start, with the Scrum Guide. There are only two roles, aside from the team itself.

  • controlled environment doesn't imply requirements never change; indeed P2 can be tailored to any type of project of any size, even two days project can be directed using P2 with couples of papers notes. – elsadek Dec 30 '16 at 19:02
  • I find that a bit of a stretch and not true to the literature or the organisations where it is originated (i.e UK Gov). – Dave Hillier Dec 31 '16 at 15:13

With a number of assumptions, in this case I would recommend Agile as it keeps you more focused on the delivery of a product still presumably young and therefore very likely to evolve quickly as it matures.

In my experience one major pitfall for startups with a good idea is the lack of delivery in a search for perfection and agile can help to avoid that.

That said ANY knowledge of PM gives valuable insights whether from the PMI the scrum alliance or indeed Prince2.

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