August 21, 2015 Leave a comment
This is quickly becoming the management buzzword of 2015. Just another magic pill for industry to improve what they do with what they believe is little work.
Agile, as a process (yes folks, it is normally a process), usually starts in an organization with IT in software development. Soon after companies get the “agile bug” and they want everything to be agile. Lean quickly becomes the Agile way to be.
Agile, by itself, is just a word describing a state of being. I’m sure there are many definitions, but in its basic sense, Agile is being able to adjust, change, or respond quickly. It’s being resilient and flexible. Agile approaches are based on quick incrimental iterations. Agile, at its core, is organic and a state of being, not a program.
How do you become Agile?
Look at how you are organized and how you make decisions in your company. Is your company fairly flat and accepting of risk or do decisions need to be collaborated up through many levels and do they take a long time to obtain approvals?
Does your system, to get things done, have to go through annual processes with multiple approvals and significant roadblocks, or are employees empowered at the lowest levels to embark on projects when needed to make things happen?
Do you focus on managing change (I e., reactive) or are your employees ready and actively looking for change opportunities and making them happen?
Agile cannot become the way you are without significantly addressing your culture and operating models. If you are slow to make decisions and change as a company and if you are reactive to changes after they occur, then you are not Agile.
Employing Agile methodologies like Agile Software Development or Lean are only programs…they do not make you Agile as a company.
Being Agile means fundamentally changing everything about your company…
Will that work for your company’s culture?