Are you concentrating on ‘doing’ agile as opposed to ‘being’ agile? At the coalface, Agile practices, approaches, methods, tools and techniques are becoming standard for many organisations, but are you experiencing real business agility and adaptability?
For an organisation, in any sector or environment, to survive and continue with a competitive edge, it is necessary to embrace not only new technologies but new ways of working. What has traditionally worked in the past is often no longer viable for the future.
What is Agile or agile really about?
The term ‘agile’ incorporates everything from flexibility, working closely with the customer to ensure the final solution meets business needs, early and predictable delivery of value, welcoming changes, continuous collaboration, a fail-fast/inspect and adapt mindset, to a focus on continually improving working practices.
Doing Agile. ‘Agile’ (upper case ‘A’) includes methods of working characterised by iterative and incremental delivery, typically timebound.
Being agile. Whereas ‘agile’ (lower case ‘a’) refers to the specific mindset and values adopted by an enterprise. This is the keystone for real business or enterprise agility.
7 questions to ask in the business agility journey
Does everyone from finance to HR to legal, IT, procurement, operations, marketing and sales understand not only what agile and agility mean, but also understand the value proposition for our organisation?
Do we embrace, and apply agile principles and an agile mindset within the context of not just project teams but the entire organisation?
Do we help ensure that everyone has a common understanding of the values and principles of agile and a common knowledge around the Agile practices and terminology being used by our organisation in order to work effectively?
Do we effectively support change at the individual, team and organisation level by educating everyone and focussing on the ‘right’ processes, behaviours, and people to make the organisation more effective and efficient?
Do we encourage team members to share knowledge by collaborating and working together in order to lower threats around ‘silo’ mentality and thereby reducing bottlenecks?
Do we provide a safe and trusting team environment by allowing everyone to experiment and make mistakes so that each can learn and continuously improve the way he/she works?
Do we understand that if the whole organisation approach to agility is not followed, an agile team may be hindered by others in our organisation?
The complexity of organisational relationships
Organisations are complex entities with interconnecting relationships between people, processes, tools, customers, users, suppliers and environments. Business agility will often mean a major shift in mindset and ways of working in all areas; in effect, a holistic transformation.
“Organisations that aspire to be truly agile focus on meeting constantly evolving needs by leveraging technology, people and assets.” A guide to AgileSHIFT®, AXELOS, 2018.
How to introduce an ‘agile’ environment
PM-Partners specialises in Agile training courses, including AgileSHIFT® from global best practice provider AXELOS. This offering provides staff with the knowledge and guidance to be able to understand, engage with and influence change by embracing agile and lean ways of working. It helps prepare stakeholders across an organisation for transformational change.
AgileSHIFT® is a registered trade mark of AXELOS Limited, used under permission of AXELOS Limited. All rights reserved.