Join Doug Rose for an in-depth discussion in this video Enterprise agile, part of Enterprise Agile: Changing Your Culture.
- [Narrator] - Enterprise Agile is an entirely different challenge from working as part of an Agile team. Agile teams focus on being self-organized, predictive, and driven to deliver. Enterprise Agile is about identifying your culture and making a widespread organizational change. Typically what happens is that an organization will have five or six Agile teams. These teams practice Scrum, Extreme programming, or even some of the lean frameworks like Kanban or Lean Startup. They'll have some success.
Maybe the developers are more satisfied. They might be making higher quality software. Once this happens, most large organizations will ask a simple question. They want to know if they can scale their success. Scaling in this context, usually means that they want to use an Agile approach to tackle bigger challenges. Instead of having five of six Agile teams, they'll want to have 20, 30, and maybe even hundreds of Agile teams. Now keep in mind that most Agile teams should have fewer than nine people.
In fact, you'll want to keep your teams even smaller. Ideally you'll have five to seven people. So what you're doing here is that you're taking the Agile team practices that work for a few dozen people, and you're up-sizing them to hundreds, or even thousands of employees. That's why you should think of Enterprise Agile in a new and different way. You shouldn't assume that you can take the strategies that work for a few dozen developers and seamlessly apply it to a large scale organizational change.
Many companies stubble and fall during this crucial part of their Agile transformation. They assume that Enterprise Agile is just like an Agile team, only bigger. The challenge here, is that Agile was never designed to be a large scale organizational change. In 2001, the Agile manifesto addressed software development. It was about how teams could develop better software. Since that time, Agile's been scaled up, to meet the needs of the modern enterprise. Originally, the Agile mindset was about better software.
Now many Enterprise Agile approaches focus on creating a mindset that drives how your organizations should think about their work. This isn't a trivial or meaningless change. In fact, many large organizations run into trouble when they adopt processes that worked well for one discipline and apply to the rest of the organization. Hewlett Packard famously struggled with this challenge at the end of the 1990s. Much of their engineering was driven by business and marketing. So a lot of their creativity suffered.
On the flip side, you have smart watch companies that do very well with engineering, that don't have a great market for their product. So it would be a mistake to assume that well established software development principles will work well for many of the parts of your organization. There are certainly areas like marketing, human resources, and other departments that don't have very much in common with software. That's why you'll see so many different approaches to Enterprise Agile. There are about a dozen, well established, Enterprise agile frameworks.
Each one takes a different approach to up-sizing software development into a large scale organizational change. Some of the Enterprise Agile frameworks make a genuine effort to up-size the M-Agile mindset, while other Enterprise agile frameworks seem to be a big leap from the original manifesto. That's why many organizations pick and choose from Enterprise frameworks. Almost like it's a buffet of different ideas. The most important thing to remember is that Enterprise Agile is an organizational change.
You're reworking your organization based on the guidance and practices originally created for software development. In fact, all the major Enterprise Agile frameworks were created and driven by software developers. As most of your organization is working on delivering software, then you should have less trouble embracing an Enterprise Agile framework. If you're a retailer, manufacturer, or in the service sector, then you might want to be a little more skeptical about making wholesale organizational changes.
That's why this course is the first in a four-part series on enterprise agile. In this course, Doug Rose helps you lay the groundwork you'll need to make this radical organizational change. First, learn how to identify your organization's culture. There are many different types of organizational cultures, and each one presents its own set of challenges. Then, see different approaches to making a widespread organizational change. Finally, learn about the common challenges that almost all organizations face when starting enterprise agile.
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- Establishing the groundwork
- Understanding the change
- Reviewing organizational culture
- Identifying your organizational culture
- Trying the Kotter approach
- Being fearless
- Evangelizing change
- Changing myths
- Focusing on culture
- Dealing with common challenges