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We explore Crystal as an Agile framework focusing on individuals and their interactions and is a direct outgrowth of one of the core values of Agile.

Crystal is an Agile framework focusing on individuals and their interactions, as opposed to processes and tools, and is a direct outgrowth of one of the core values articulated in the Agile Manifesto.

This set of methodologies was developed by Alistar Cockburn in the mid-1990s. It is actually a family of five approaches, each bearing the name of a color:

crystal family method indicated on a team size line ranging from clear to yellow to orange to red to maroon

  • Clear for up to 6 people
  • Yellow for up to 20 people
  • Orange for up to 40 people
  • Red for up to 80 people
  • Maroon for up to 200 people

The darker the Crystal color, the larger the team that it is recommended for.

The Crystal method has several essentials, which are known as Crystal properties:

  • Frequent delivery
  • Reflective improvement
  • Close or osmotic communication
  • Personal safety
  • Focus
  • Easy access to expert users
  • Technical environment with an automated test, configuration management, and frequent integration


Below are additional resources for your consideration as you explore and learn more about the scrum approach:

What are your thoughts?

  • Can you think of any examples either in your experience or one you have heard of where you think this framework might be appropriate? Try to justify your answer.
  • Take a look at the responses from your peers. Do you agree with their responses? If not, explain why.
Use the Comments section below and let us know your thoughts. Try to respond to at least one other post.

Once you are happy with your contribution, click the Mark as complete button to check the step off, then you can move to the next step in which we look at Heart of Agile – Modern Agile.

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