As any good manager knows, a team infused with a strong sense of responsibility will produce a higher quality outcome. Instilling ownership across a team is more an art than a science. It is a transformation that requires a deliberate communication style, some leadership savvy, delicate execution, and patience.(more…) Read More
Agile is about empowering teams and individuals. The roles defined by Agile are: Product Owner, Scrum Master, and team member. Not listed? Project sponsor.
That said, organizations often have established practices around designating a sponsor or two when a project or program is initiated. How do these two worlds meet? Should Agile teams have sponsors or not? Can a sponsor provide value to an Agile project?Read More
Many organizations try to fight against project failure by adding budget, resources, or time to the baseline. However, throwing money at the situation often leads to wasted efforts and more frustration, if the root problem isn’t addressed. Failure itself isn’t necessarily something to resist (see our thoughts on failing fast). However, pulling the plug on a major project can be easier said than done. Internal politics or other factors may limit the team’s ability to admit failure and cancel an initiative.
When your project is destined to fail, but abandoning ship is not an option, a brief pause and shift can allow you to turn things around before you completely blow the budget.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
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
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
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