WHEN ARE YOU ‘AGILE ENOUGH’?
The question ‘when will we be completely Agile?’ is easy enough to answer with the help of these three Laws:
THE LAWS OF WORKING AGILE
Large organizations bring elaborate with them hierarchies and interdependencies. Agility rests firstly on the principle that these should be replaced by goal-oriented teams, no larger than strictly necessary.
The goal that each team works toward should be a result that best serves the customer, the end user. Whatever output there is, should add to what consumers, clients, citizens, and other prime beneficiaries are willing to pay for. This is a simple compass, but extremely useful to ´trim the fat´ and setting proper priorities.
The principle of the network serves to complement the autonomy of the small team, without once again ensnaring it in hierarchy and interdependency. Where hierarchies and structures are fixed and limiting, networks are multi-faceted and situational. This principle also embraces the reality of our digitally networked day and age.
So, when can you say you’re Agile enough? When the flow of work is entirely structured around value streams so every action performed serves only to add value to what the customer pays for (Law of the customer); when work is carried out by small, goal-oriented, autonomous teams (Law of the small team), working in situationally addressed networks (Law of the network), then your organization is principally capable
of adapting to whichever challenge or opportunity the market presents.
In a more concrete sense, it’s safe to say that removing the limiting impact of the silo barriers is a major initial Agile achievement that takes several years to complete for most if not all major organizations.
That major change, formidable and liberating, is remarkable enough in itself.
The bottom line of working Agile is that individual employees regain the autonomy and empowerment once felt by every mature human being. This is a power that individuals have in tribes, in sports teams and in small, start-up type organizations;it’s a power that large-scale conventional organizations stripped them of in the wake of Taylorist de-humanization and the atomization of work processes a d project management.
So, in a sense, one might say that when
each and every individual feels empowered enough to improve the entire organization with one single good idea…you’re Agile enough.
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