As you must know, the world in which we have been living for a few years is what the economists like to call a VUCA world, a volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous world.
Both for you and for us, remaining successful and effective in this context is a true challenge. Where time and paces of transformation are speeding up, instilling agility becomes then vital.
The Deloitte firm has addressed this issue and defines the agile company as a « company which provides its customers with concrete and customized solutions, which cooperates in order to improve its competitiveness, which gets organized to master change and uncertainty, and which is enriched by its collaborators and its information assets.”
Agility is culture above all, a state of mind disseminated at all levels of our organization. It relies on exchange, trust and collaboration between the different players of the company and on continuous questioning.
To adopt an agile approach is to impulse regular and painless small changes in one’s company, at the pace of the market evolution, rather than making it undergo a brutal and painful transformation.
Whatever your industry, your organization would gain in becoming agile. Here are some tips on how to consider an agile transformation:
Let’s go back to the genesis of agility, it comes from the world of IT developers who were seeking to implement another form of project management, more effective and satisfying for the customer.
To be agile is to considerate that the customer is always in the room and it implies frequent exchanges with your customers, listening to them and providing them with solutions meeting their needs. In agile mode, upstream design is banned; it evolves as the project moves forward.
Agile or 3.0 management relies on trust granted to one’s collaborators. Teams auto–organize and benefit from their autonomy, which helps them make decisions the most adapted to the occurring changes, without having to wait for eventual instructions or an approval that sometimes takes time to arrive.
In agile mode, hierarchical barriers are a distant memory. An agile manager sees to it that his/her team organization is moving in the right direction, that the collaborative spirit is well set and that everybody is involved. He/she is also listening to his/her collaborators, by taking into account their feedback; he/she guides and directs them all along the project progress.
To change the operating mode and culture is not necessarily obvious for all companies. You will likely need support in order to set up a sustainable and efficient agility.
Get trained and train your collaborators on agile methods, change will not occur from one day to the next, it is not about changing the way you do things but about making small changes. The best would be to find one or several agile coaches who, depending on your organization, will guide you in order to adopt a 100% agile approach.
Contrary to general belief, agility is not restricted to IT developers; it is within the reach of any business. And if you are beginning to question your organization, you are in the right direction; you only have to go ahead.