Alistair Cockburn developed the Crystal Methods approach. His focus is on the people, interaction, community, skills, talents, and communications with the belief that these are what have the first-order effect on performance. Process, he says, is important, but secondary.
Cockburn's philosophy translate into a recognition that each team has a different set of talents and skills and therefore each team should use a process uniquely tailored to it. And it means that the process should be minimized - barely significant.
The use of the word “crystal” refers to the various facets of a gemstone - each a different face on an underlying core. The underlying core represents values and principles, while each facet represents a specific set of elements such as techniques, roles, tools, and standards. Cockburn also differentiates between methodology, techniques, and policies. A methodology is a set of elements (practices, tools); techniques are skill areas such as developing use cases; and policies dictate organizational “musts”.