You want an agile transformation because you're sure it will help your business outcomes. And you see so many offerings—primarily frameworks. You might have tried any number of those frameworks or traditional transformations—and they haven't worked for you. That's because frameworks don't address your organization's culture. And agility at any level requires a culture change.
Instead of a framework, why not consider an agile transformation based on business outcomes?
My Approach to a Business-Outcome Based Agile Transformation
Here's how I work with you to create your “agile” transformation:
- Avoid naming it. Especially, don't use the word, transformation, at any time. You might say something like this: “We want more adaptable and resilient decisions, so we can compete better.”
- Define your strategy, so you can then manage your project portfolio.
- Define a reward system based on collaboration. Why? Because people work to maximize their rewards and minimize their punishments. And we start with the management rewards.
- Create management cohorts based on the strategy. Those cohorts will learn to visualize and manage the organizational impediments. And to create a learning organization across the entire organization.
- Change the governance model. Too many supposedly agile organizations still ask for traditional measures. You might have to report in cost accounting measures, but you don't have to manage with cost accounting. You have many other options.
Once the managers start to use agility, we can then see what the teams need. In my experience, once we change the management behaviors and the rewards, the teams will ask for the training they need.
Yes, this is a contrarian approach to the way a lot of people support agile transformations. If your way works for you, excellent. However, my clients call me because they are on their 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, and, more supposedly agile transformation. They've lost valuable technical staff and managers because agility is counter to their current culture. Until they changed their culture, they couldn't transform.
That's why I work with you to address your culture.
Benefits of Working This Way
Why should you work this way, starting with culture? Here are the benefits:
- You'll focus on the business outcomes you need to achieve.
- If you need to change that focus (the adaptability part), you'll create new results to guide your actions.
- You'll develop a strategy and learn how often you need to reassess that strategy.
- Your managers will focus on the overarching goal that arises from your strategy work.
- Because your managers focus on the overarching goal, they will manage the project portfolio. That portfolio will reduce the problem of too much WIP (Work in Progress). And the portfolio will help the teams finish valuable work as often as possible.
- Because we address the reward system as part of our work, the managers will continue to work towards that overarching goal.
You and I work together every step of the way. I offer several options for workshops, consulting, and coaching. After our intensive work, I often create coaching circles or offer trusted advisor work.
However, I will support your managers as change artists. If you work with me, you'll get me. Not an army of coaches or other experts. Your managers will become your coaches.
After I work with your managers, I can offer you my team-based workshops for product owners and agile teams. Those workshops will reinforce the changes that the managers request.
You don't have to tolerate an agile transformation that does not address your culture. Instead, work with me to create a successful agile transformation, one that relies on culture and business outcomes to succeed.
Want to work with me? Contact me and let's talk.