My Key Takeaways from the Book: Accelerate

Abdul R. Wahab
3 min readDec 13, 2020


What book? Why read it?

Authored by Nicole Forsgren, Jez Humble, and Gene Kim, Accelerate: Building and Scaling High Performing Technology Organizations illustrates the key facets that enable high-performing technology organizations. The book references data collected from the State of DevOps report from 2014.

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This book is useful for any person involved in building and playing key roles in Agile teams. It outlines a path to finding success through the use of statistical data analysis. It also debunks the popular notion that “going towards Agile” is in some way a fuzzy process. This book shows that there are various patterns aming all levels that successful Agile organizations commonly share.

Meaning, becoming and thriving via Agile can be data-driven.

Key Themes

The book breaks down twenty-four different capabilities that enable quality software delivery which fall into five categories:

Organizational and Team Culture

These five aspects are key in fostering and growing a culture of successful delivery:

  • Supporting a generative culture (made from results)
  • Encouraging and supporting continuous learning
  • Facilitating and supporting collaboration amongst teams
  • Provide resources and tools that make work meaningful
  • Embodying transformational leadership styles (ex: we’ve always done x this way, so we’ll continue the same way) mentality goes out the window, lands in community dumpster

Product Management and Development practices

These four aspects are key in helping deliver customer satisfaction:

  • Always gathering customer feedback & data, then implementing it
  • Work and deliver functionality in small batches
  • Help make development work visible using value streams
  • Support and encourage team experimentation

Lean Management and Proactive Monitoring

So you can make things easier for you when needed, and always know what’s going on

  • Automate/Implement a lightweight change approval process (ex: GitOps)
  • Take informed business decisions while monitoring infrastructure and applications across your area
  • Check and monitor your API/System health proactively
  • Improve processes by managing work with WIP (Work-In-Progress) limits
  • Take a keen and visual look at work to monitor quality and communicate throughout the team

Continuous Delivery

So you can ship with least amount of hurdles

  • Always look for automation, and automate your deployment processes
  • Use version control for all production deployables
  • Implement continuous integration pipelines
  • Use trunk-based development tools and processes
  • Implement test automation
  • Facilitate and support management of test data
  • Integrate application security into the design and test phases of your software development process
  • Implement continuous delivery

Good Architecture

So you can build, ship AND build and ship AGAIN with least amount of hurdles

  • Implement loosely-coupled architectures (go for layered approach if not clear)
  • Architect the application along with team

Originally published at on December 13, 2020.



Abdul R. Wahab

Multi-domain Technical Lead specialized in building products users love. Today, I manage & secure big data in the AWS cloud. All views shared are my own.