Does Agile apply when managing a company? In this episode, Simon Severino shares his story and his business of taking Agile to the C-Suite of fast-growing companies!
If you follow this podcast, the success of Agile methods is not a news item. It’s clear that Agile has improved greatly our ability to deliver software products to the market. In this episode, however, we look at a different application of Agile ideas. What if we could apply Agile to the methods we use to manage our businesses? That’s where this interview focuses: how Agile changes our approaches to running a business.
Simon is a growth consulting, he works with business leaders to help them improve the performance of their business. He does that using methods that will sound familiar to all Agile product development team members.
Managing your business as if it were an empirical problem, not a planning problem
Can we apply Agile ideas to the definition and execution of Strategy for our businesses? Trent Hone, award winning Naval historian, Karl Scotland, Agile Strategy pioneer, and Henri Mårtensson, long time author on the topic of business strategy got together to discuss just that.
Karl starts this episode by describing how he discovered the need to bring Agile to the level of strategic decision making. He tells the story of a team that was, by all measures, successful. They were delivering software, they were achieving their technology goals, but the business was not booming. What was wrong? This was the start of a long journey for Karl. During that journey, he discovered that there were a lot more topics that required an Agile approach. Not the least of which Strategy. Which had to become Agile Strategy.
From Strategy to Business
In the end, the Agile Strategy is nothing more than everything that is required to make the business Agile. We discuss what that means, what are the problems it tries to tackle, and the aspects required from businesses that want to be Agile.
We also discuss the characteristics of strategy, and how we can think of Agile as an enabler to business success.
The Agile Strategy framework: TASTE
In a changing business, we need to have a common and shared language about the ways of working, and the ways of defining strategy. Karl’s approach goes by the acronym of TASTE and tackles the aspects that he sees as being critical to the application of Agile at the business level. In this article, Karl describes those 5 aspects in more detail.
Putting Agile Strategy into practice with simple tools: The X-Matrix by Karl Scotland
Now it is your turn! How are you planning to make your business agile? Leave a comment below!
About Karl Scotland
Over the last 15 years, he’s been an advocate of Lean and Agile approaches to achieve this, working with companies including the BBC, Yahoo!, EMC Consulting, Rally Software, Cisco, and SDL. During this time, he was a pioneer of using Kanban Systems and Strategy Deployment for product development, a founding member of both the Lean Systems Society and Limited WIP Society, as well as being active in the community and a regular conference speaker. He has been awarded the honorary Brickell Key Community Contribution Award at the 2013 Lean Kanban North America conference.