Does Your Business Need an Agile Makeover and How to Know. The term ‘makeover’ generally means new clothes, hair, house or a car. But there is no reason to limit the term to those personal items and Ryn Melberg does not. On the latest edition of the Guardian Podcast with Ryn Melberg, she answers the question does your organization or business need an Agile makeover.
Symptoms of a Makeover Need
There are definite signs that it is time for a serious review and intervention according to Ryn. “In business, if the organization is unable to compete effectively, adjust to and use new technology or attract and retain talent, it is time for a good bit of contemplation,” she told listeners. “If you cannot use the latest security patch, or hire someone to help with it or both, it’s a sign that you are in trouble.” The best people will want to work for the companies that use the latest innovation and automate routine tasks. Few if any will be satisfied doing mundane jobs that other organizations do with the aid of mechanisms or systemization. “If you make people work late or come in on a weekend to do routine stuff, expect the best of them to head for the exit.”
The Makeover Will Be Substantive
As with anything involving Agile, the changes at the organization will be the ones where the most pain exists. Ryn believes that identifying the ‘pain points’ is an important step for those who believe they need to re-evaluate how they are working. “There is no point in merely attacking cosmetic issues because the changes will be superficial,” Ryn stated. “Agile makeovers are for those who are interested in knowing more about the root causes of any dilemma. Where are you hurting the most and what is causing the pain? If you are not prepared to deal with those, then considering a makeover is a waste of everyone’s time. Makeovers that only work on wardrobe or hairstyle, do not address the issue of how the person views him or herself and that is the thing that needs the work. It’s the same any organization.”
Before Starting the Makeover Process
Ryn believes that a business or organization should have a set of goals first and then begin the Agile transformation and not the other way around. She also emphasized the ‘why’s’ as important. “User stories are about what gets done where for a transformation you need to be focused on the why,” she said. “Also realize that as an agent of change, flexibility and realization that goals will be different than they were before the audit.
She also pointed out that the places that are the most in need but least likely to opt for any type of change are the most successful ones. “Successful companies are more tolerant of bureaucratic dysfunction because as Ryn says, they are making their numbers’ and do not see the need to change. “When a business is making its quarterly financial goals, there is little impetus or enthusiasm for change,” she said. “While this might seem counter intuitive, think about the momentum in any bureaucracy and why the members would want to try and fix what seems unbroken to them.”