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.
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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:
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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
Did you miss SIM Connect Live in Dallas last month? Don’t worry – we took notes.
For the 50th anniversary event, SIM put together something special for all ages and career stages. From youth groups presenting their world-class innovations to seasoned IT professionals and CIOs sharing their thoughts as they exit the industry, there was much to learn. We’ve put together a breakdown of our favorite sessions to keep you informed. (more…) Read More
Intense media coverage makes it seem as though digital is taking over the world and traditional companies are doomed to become obsolete. If you are not confident with your digital strategy and where you stand among your peers, this exaggerated buzz might be daunting. As Mikhail Papovsky, Abraic founder and CEO, concluded at SIM Connect Live in Dallas, the sky is not falling but changes are needed. Adopting an unemotional, pragmatic approach to digital transformation will allow every organization to survive and prosper.
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While IT implementation challenges may seem similar across industries, it often takes a deeper dive into a profession’s nuances and specific constraints to fully understand potential barriers to success. I was reminded of this recently at home during dinner. (more…) Read More
The promise of Agile is speed to market for delivering incremental value to the customer, but why is the adoption of Agile in organizations so difficult and slow? As addressed in my recent blog post, “Are you Using, Doing, or Being Agile?” Agile adoption takes more than just checking boxes, but rather is a complex, multi-phase journey. And any unfamiliar journey requires the navigator to know the destination. Have you tried using GPS without entering an address? Understanding where you are headed is a key component of any successful endeavor. (more…) Read More
An Agile transformation is a journey. A journey has many ups and downs, and an Agile journey is no different. Another way of thinking about this is how a company can reach Agile maturity. Just like playing an instrument or participating in a sport, practice makes perfect. However, that is not the full story.
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Today, headlines about digital transformation dominate blogs and journals. IT leaders feel that they should have already started their organization’s transition into the digital age. But the amount of buzz around this trend shouldn’t force you into a hasty decision.
For years you’ve been told to avoid technology for technology’s sake – yet the same trap is catching CIOs pushing for digital transformation because everyone else is doing it. Like any IT initiative, digital transformation only makes sense if it supports your organization’s overall strategy.
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