Sure, the first days in your role as CIO are critical. Advice abounds in books, blog posts, and presentations for how to approach your initial 90- or 100-day period. These recommendations are compelling and directionally sound. In reality, it’s rare when a CIO nails their first 100 days in perfect form. But that’s ok! The real issue is what you should do after the first 100 days are up.Read More
Trust is the grease that keeps a team running smoothly. One of the most effective and low-cost ways to improve the delivery, performance, and morale is to gain the team’s trust. As a Scrum Master, it’s your responsibility to build trust with your team. A team that trusts their Scrum Master has an advantage over others. Broadly speaking, teams perform better when they feel they’re in good hands.
Scrum Masters can seem like outsiders, as you tend to interact with the team, not with their work. The dynamic is exacerbated during Agile transformations: Scrum Masters who are brought in to work with a team that is used to a waterfall approach can struggle to gain the team’s trust.
Here are 5 ways to connect with your team, and demonstrate that you are here to help and support them:Read More
There is a new type of CIO on the scene: the Transformational CIO. Transformational CIOs focus on external customers, innovate, think about the top line, drive business process evolution, and change the culture of the entire organization.
The almost-extinct type of a CIO—one we would all like to forget—we’ll call the Traditional CIO. Little is written about the misery of the Traditional CIO. Traditional CIOs are focused on technology first, take orders from internal customers, don’t rock the boat, and diligently reduce IT spend by 10 percent year over year, using band-aid solutions to keep outdated technology operational.Read More
When hiring new team members, most interviewers discreetly study applicants to see if they would pass The Airport Test: “Could I get stuck in an airport for 8 hours with this person and not lose my mind?!” We recently took this idea to an entirely new level.Read More
The Agile methodology has been widely accepted and implemented in many organizations for various goals. Most use Agile for project execution and product development. We even advocate using an Agile-based iterative engagement model for vendor management to minimize the risk of getting locked into long, inflexible contracts, and to prioritize outcomes over arbitrary task lists.
Many executives still think an Agile methodology would never work in their organization. Some have even attempted to implement Agile and were not happy with the results. Agile flops tend to fall into one of two categories: The organization either did not implement the actual Agile methodology, or was not ready for it.Read More
We are big believers in an iterative model for vendor engagements. It’s a novel concept for some organizations. To determine if the approach is right for you, familiarize yourself with the potential risks and rewards for both the client and the vendor.Read More
Agile is now being used far beyond its original purpose, which was software development. We see organizations apply Agile methodology to any project or program where the end result is a continual work in progress.
Come to think of it, my son and I use an Agile approach when we go fishing. We know we want to catch a bunch of fish, but we don’t know what kind or where, so we move our canoe around the lake all day based on our success in each spot, wind direction, time of day, and other factors.
Abraic exercises an Agile approach for our internal innovation program. Our R&D group is working strictly on a high-frequency, trial-and-error basis in one-week sprints. This minimizes cost exposure and allows us to make adjustments based on the latest findings.
Another area where an Agile approach is very effective is vendor engagement. The predominant practice to date has been to take an ambitious high-level scope and hand it off to a chosen vendor by means of a complex, long, and expensive contract. Yet, there are many cases when the project requires a significant redirection, including changing the vendor, utilizing in-house resources, re-scoping the project, putting the effort on hold, and so on. We end up having a to make a tough choice: make minor tweaks and complete as planned even if it doesn’t match our expectations or try to renegotiate – a lengthy and painful endeavor that may involve legal and oftentimes damages relationships.Read More
The buzz around “digital transformation” can make it difficult to cut through the noise. In the same search, you may discover wide-ranging recommendations from respected sources that point in opposite directions. Whose advice do you follow?
We wanted to hear directly from CIOs on how they are solving the most common problems arising from their digital journeys, so we sponsored an in-depth market study.
From the Front Line: CIOs’ Perspectives on Digital Transformations (Bennett-Frank Associates, 2018) was powered by interviews with over 50 CIOs from a broad range of industries and company sizes regarding the current state of their digital transformations.
Here are the insights that stood out the most to us:Read More
As with most significant changes, digital transformation can elicit both passive and aggressive reactions. In the correct context and with the right audience, both perspectives can be valid and useful. How can IT leaders embrace these representations to enact true transformation within an organization? (more…)Read More
“Culture eats strategy for breakfast,” is a famous quotation attributed to the late business management guru Peter Drucker. While a debate continues as to whether Mr. Drucker actually said it, the statement itself merits further exploration. I believe it means that any great strategy regardless of the depth of research, hard work, number of paid consultants, and even its own brilliance, will not achieve its intended future state if it fails to take an organization’s culture into consideration.
For part three in my Agile journey series, I will examine the importance of addressing cultural elements to achieve a successful Agile transformation. (more…)Read More