I picked up the book thinking the volume will answer my doubts about common implementations of the agile process… (Are waterfall stages called “sprints” really “agile”?) The book answered a more fundamental question: what is an agile mindset? No, it is not the form, or name, or roles, or meeting types. It is a collection of small groups solving a puzzle of delighting the customer – one completed project at a time.
The book is trying to tackle a critical challenge: how a company should be organized in a modern environment? The company needs to succeed in the VUKA (Volatile, Uncertain, Complex and Ambiguous) world; what gives the organization the best chance?
The challenge businesses face would not decrease, but is expected to accelerate with time.
Steven Danning suggests that a new management approach – agile – is the only known answer management should consider. Even if the approach came from management-suspicious IT, it places the customer in the center and arms teams closest to the customer with the power to find and solve customer’s problems. The approach works in tiny startups and large multinational corporations if it is supported by the organizational leadership and culture.
Interesting: it is not unusual for an organization starting its agile journey to struggle with “done” concept. The project is “done,” when it is fully functional, can be used by the customer, and not a completed stage of a much larger undertaking.
Remarkably, the agile approach is good for customers (as the customer in the center), good for the employee engagement (as employees have the authority to solve customer problems and see the fruits of their work), and also good for employees as people (no “emergencies” devouring evenings and weekends). And – this approach also makes (and keeps) the organization profitable.
The names of the teams, meetings, and tasks can be anything we want 🙂