An Agile Adoption and Transformation Survival Guide

There is a con­sid­er­able con­fu­sion in the Agile com­mu­ni­ty between adop­tion and trans­for­ma­tion. Change agents from var­i­ous orga­ni­za­tions talk about adopt­ing Agile and not about trans­form­ing their orga­ni­za­tion cul­ture. The con­se­quence of this is under­tak­ing such an impor­tant trans­for­ma­tion with­out hav­ing the full buy-in of the peo­ple, with­out under­stand­ing the orga­ni­za­tion­al impli­ca­tions. Usu­al­ly this leads to failure.

There are not so many mod­els in the Agile com­mu­ni­ty that may guide change agents in their trans­for­ma­tion­al approach­es. The Michael Saho­ta’s book is a sur­vival guide pre­sent­ed as a frame­work that helps any­one to under­stand and plan Agile change work. This frame­work is also use­ful if work­ing with Kan­ban and Soft­ware Craftsmanship.

The basic con­cept behind this frame­work is that “if you do not man­age the cul­ture, the cul­ture is man­ag­ing you”. And, in addi­tion to this, Peter Duck­er’s quote is also very enlight­en­ing: “Cul­ture eats strat­e­gy for break­fast”. Indeed, no mat­ter how care­ful you pre­pare a strat­e­gy for change, if it is not aligned with the orga­ni­za­tion’s cul­ture, you are con­demned to fail.

Part 1: Agile in Crisis

Agile Fail­ure is Pervasive

Adop­tion and trans­for­ma­tion to Agile seems to be prone to high fail­ure rates in many indus­tries and orga­ni­za­tions. Accord­ing to Ver­sionOne, 84% of respon­dents in the Agile Devel­op­ment Sur­vey report­ed that they had expe­ri­enced a failed Agile project.

Agile is Due for Failure

Cul­ture is #1 Chal­lenge with Agile Adoption

Part 2: Agile Culture

Agile is not a Process, is about Culture

Under­stand­ing Cul­ture — Schnei­der Model

Agile Cul­ture is about Col­lab­o­ra­tion and Cultivation

Kan­ban Cul­ture is Aligned with Control

Soft­ware Crafts­man­ship is about Competence

Work­ing with your Culture

Part 3: Adop­tion and Trans­for­ma­tion Sur­vival Guide

Defin­ing Adop­tion and Transformation

Adop­tion of Agile Prac­tices in Mis­matched Culture

Adop­tion and trans­for­ma­tion in Sup­port­ive Culture

Agile Trans­for­ma­tion

Oth­er Approach­es to Orga­ni­za­tion­al Change

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