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Time To Let Go: PRINCE2® & Agile Myths To Finally Leave Behind

Project management is an evolving field, constantly influenced by new methodologies and insights.

Yet, amidst this evolution, certain misconceptions about PRINCE2® and Agile continue to persist.

These myths not only mislead but also work to prevent the potential coming together of these two approaches.

In this article:

As we delve into the world of PRINCE2® and Agile project management methodologies, prepare to challenge your current understanding and refine your approach to project management, hopefully, leaving behind outdated myths that continue to persist today.

PRINCE2® Myths Debunked

Myth 1: PRINCE2® is Too Rigid for Modern Projects

One prevalent myth is that PRINCE2® is too structured and inflexible for the dynamic nature of modern projects. However, this couldn’t be further from the truth.

PRINCE2®’s principles and themes are designed to be tailored to the needs of any project, regardless of its size or complexity. This framework offers a robust foundation, but it does not dictate for rigid processes to used. Instead, it provides guidelines that can be adapted to suit the unique context of each project.

Myth 2: PRINCE2® Cannot Be Tailored

The misconception that PRINCE2® is a one-size-fits-all solution that cannot be adjusted is closely related to the first myth.

In reality, this methodology is actually quite flexible. It encourages tailoring its principles, themes, and processes to the specific requirements of a project. This flexibility means that it can be applied effectively to a wide range of industries and project types.

Myth 3: PRINCE2® Is Incompatible With Agile

Perhaps the most persistent myth is that PRINCE2® and Agile are mutually exclusive methodologies.

This myth arises from a misunderstanding of both frameworks. PRINCE2®, with its structured approach, can actually complement Agile’s flexibility. The two methodologies can be integrated to harness the strengths of both: PRINCE2®’s focus on governance and organisation, along with Agile’s emphasis on adaptability and customer collaboration.

Agile Myths Clarified

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Myth 1: Agile Means No Planning or Documentation

A common misconception about Agile is that it completely disregards planning and documentation.

In truth, Agile values adaptability and responsiveness, but this doesn’t mean the absence of planning. Agile methodologies involve continuous planning and frequent reassessment, which can be more effective than traditional long-term planning.

Similarly, while Agile prioritises working software over comprehensive documentation, it does not eliminate the need for documentation. Instead, it advocates for just enough documentation to meet the project’s needs effectively.

Myth 2: Agile Only Works for Software Development

Agile is often associated exclusively with software development, but its principles are applicable beyond this field.

The Agile mindset and practices can be adapted to various industries, including marketing, education, and manufacturing.

Its core principles of:

  • Collaboration
  • Iterative progress
  • Flexibility

    These principles are universally applicable, making Agile versatile in any dynamic project environment.

Myth 3: Agile Results in Faster Deliverables at the Cost of Quality

Some believe that Agile’s emphasis on speed compromises quality. However, Agile methodologies inherently include mechanisms to maintain quality, such as regular reviews, continuous integration, and frequent testing. These practices ensure that quality is embedded in the process, and products evolve through a series of incremental improvements.

Combining PRINCE2® and Agile – A Unilever Case Study

What happened: Unilever implemented a project management framework called “Unilever Agile Delivery” which combines elements of PRINCE2® with Agile methodologies.


  1. Slowness and inflexibility: Traditional waterfall project management led to lengthy development cycles and difficulty adapting to changing market demands.

  1. Misalignment and siloed teams: Waterfall’s sequential stages created communication gaps and hindered collaboration between departments.

  1. Lack of innovation: Rigid processes stifled creativity and experimentation, hampering product development and competitive advantage.

  1. Demotivation and disengagement: Employees felt disconnected from decision-making, leading to lower morale and productivity.

Approach: Combining PRINCE2® and Agile

  1. Structured governance: Retained PRINCE2®’s stages (Initiate, Define, Develop, Deliver, Close) for project lifecycle framework, maintaining accountability and risk management.
  1. Iterative development: Introduced Agile principles like Scrum and Kanban within stages, breaking down work into sprints and promoting continuous feedback and adaptation.
  1. Empowered teams: Cross-functional teams took ownership of projects, making decisions and adjusting plans within sprint cycles.
  1. Focus on collaboration: Open communication and knowledge sharing across teams fostered innovation and faster problem-solving.

Faster Time to Market

  1. Enhanced Innovation: Empowered teams generated more creative ideas, resulting in a higher volume of successful product innovations.
  1. Improved Employee Engagement: Team ownership and decision-making boosted morale, motivation, and productivity.
  2. Increased Efficiency: Iterative feedback and reduced rework streamlined processes, leading to cost savings and improved resource allocation.
  1. Greater Adaptability: UAD’s flexibility allowed teams to readily adjust to changing priorities and market dynamics, enhancing strategic agility.

Overcoming Implementation Challenges With PRINCE2® and Agile

Integrating PRINCE2® with Agile methodologies can bring substantial benefits, but it also comes with its set of challenges. Addressing these challenges effectively is key to successful implementation.

Addressing Cultural and Operational Changes

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The integration of PRINCE2® and Agile often requires a shift in the organisational culture and operations. It’s crucial to foster a culture that embraces the discipline of these two project management methods.

This may involve training teams to appreciate and understand the value of structured project governance while also being adaptive to changes. Operational shifts might include adapting existing processes to accommodate Agile practices, such as introducing iterative development cycles and continuous feedback mechanisms.

Training and Team Adaptation

illustration of two colleagues shaking hands

Effective integration also hinges on the team’s ability to adapt to new methodologies. Training is essential to help team members understand the principles and practices of both PRINCE2® and Agile.

This training should not just focus on the theoretical aspects but also on practical applications and real-life examples. Encouraging open communication and collaboration among team members can also facilitate a smoother transition to this integrated approach.

Available Now: Accredited PRINCE2® and Agile Project Management Courses and Qualifications

Are you ready to succeed in your career in the UK job market?

Whether you’re interested in switching careers or advancing in your current path, the right qualifications can prove to be the light switch to shine a path forward for your career.

At ITonlinelearning, we understand the challenges of building specialist skills and knowledge to keep up with an always-changing job landscape.

That is why we’re excited to offer our fully online, UK-accredited PRINCE2® and AgilePM® courses, tailored to your professional goals.

Why Choose Our Courses?

  1. UK Accredited Qualifications: Gain the skills and credentials highly sought after in the UK market. Our courses are not just about education and certificates; they are your pathway to career opportunities.
  1. Recruitment Support Post-Qualification: We don’t just equip you with knowledge; we guide you towards your next job. Completing our courses gains you access to our recruitment support – whose job it is to help you land that dream job.
  1. Expert Tutor Support: You’re not alone in your learning journey. Our expert tutors will guide you, ensuring you understand all of the course materials, including complex concepts.
  1. Flexible Payment Options: We believe financial constraints should not stop you from pursuing the job and life you want. Our flexible payment plans make learning accessible so you focus on your studies, not the costs.
  1. Accredited Learning Materials & Exam Prep: With top-notch study materials and dedicated exam preparation sessions, we’ll help you prepare and become confident to ace your exams.

Course Format and Duration

Delivered entirely online, our courses offer the flexibility you need. 

Engage with a vibrant community of fellow students and tutors on our learning platform. Choose between 6 or 12-month course access to tailor the learning pace that works for you.

Ready To Transform Your Career With Accredited PRINCE2® or AgilePM® Qualifications?

Explore our courses and take the first step towards your future.

For aspiring and practising project management professionals: View PRINCE2® Courses.

Looking to excel in agile environments: View AgilePM® Courses.

Study with us and gain access to a host of benefits

5 Star Support Team

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