The Common Aspects of Almost-Instant Agile Success

We hear so much about how adopting Agile is hard. It is worth looking at the exceptions in order to learn why it doesn’t have to be that way.

Let’s consider the case of a dev group of 75-300 people. This is a good example of a common situation. The organization was looking at improvements, focusing on product management, and organizing how people work together. Specifically, here was what they paid attention to.

  • Shifting from a perspective of one-off projects to a stream of enhancements products
  • Allocating capacity to the work coming in
  • Organizing the talent to better work together
  • Being clear on what the requirements were

This was guided by attending to cost-of-delay which had the groups take a systems-thinking approach.

In all cases, they made agreements on how people were to work together and how work was prioritized. It was surprisingly easy because they were guided by a focus on the whole and on the work itself. Everyone could see that the agreements were going to make their life easier. Yes, they were following a framework but the agreements weren’t about following a framework; they were about what made sense to get the job done.

When people see what’s in it for them, it is not just easy to get them to do it, they will want to.

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