BONUS: Plan to pivot, a book and many lessons for Agile non-IT organizations with Gerry Starsia

Gerry came across Agile while working as a project manager in a construction company. Motivated by his drive to provide a great service to his customers, he started to study how to make his own business more adaptable and Agile. 

Working with new technologies, he started to improve certain aspects of his business. However, he quickly realized that the size of the projects and demands of the customers were making what once was an “easy” to manage service, into a complicated service with many moving parts. 

The use of computers helped manage that complexity, but also brought even more complexity. This was when Gerry discovered Agile and what it could bring to a non-IT business. 

Agile applied to non-IT industries

Gerry started to study Agile from the perspective of a Project Manager. But quickly realized that Agile had many lessons he could apply elsewhere. Gerry started applying the lessons he had learned to his own work as an executive, and found that Agile principles also apply to strategy and company leadership. 

In this segment, we discuss how studying Agile led Gerry to learn about, and start applying the ideas of “pilots” and “experiments” to his own work as a leader. 

Agile for leaders, the key aspects

“Plan to Pivot” is the name of the book that Gerry wrote. In it, he describes some of the main lessons he now applies and teaches his students. Preparing for change is one of the key lessons he discusses, and shares his insights on how businesses can prepare for change even when they don’t know when, or what that change will be. In this segment, we discuss how Agile can be applied as a philosophy of business. 

About Gerry Starsia

Over two decades, Gerry has been on the faculty at the University of Virginia. He brings the perspectives of a former project manager, program manager, project executive, and business founder and CEO. That combination of real-world experience and doctoral-level research, brings an interconnection between the theory and practice; between what could be and what is.

Gerry is the Author of Plan To Pivot: Agile Organizational Strategy in an Age of Complexity, and you can link up with Gerry Starsia on LinkedIn, on you can contact Gerry Starsia on his website

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