Where you cannot implement Agile? What are the levers to accelerate your Agile adoption? Among main levers you can find: a powerful reason; a specific company and management culture; a customer-focused organization, Agile Champions and simple and automated processes for fast feedback.
Ver versión en español aquí: https://es.slideshare.net/xalbaladejo/enterprise-agile-adoption-lmites-y-palancas
[en] Enterprise Agile adoption - Limits and levers
Enterprise Agile adoption
Limits and levers
Agile Spain Conference
Xavier coordinates a Postgraduate in Agile Methods at La
Salle, he is Certified Scrum Practitioner, Certied LeSS
Practitioner, founder of proyectosagiles.org and Agile
Barcelona and he has been president of Agile Spain.
His work as Agile Expert en AXA MedLA IT (Mediterranean-
Latin-American Region) consist on introducing Agile as part
of Digital transformation in the countries of this region, with
the aim of increasing their speed and flexibility to adapt to
Xavier Albaladejo specialty is organizational transformation
based on Agile-Lean principles.
Why are you reaching limits in your Agile
adoption? Why will it not work?
Everyone is pursuing his/her own priorities. People work for
themselves, not for the global objective.
There are managers (in Business and in IT) who have no interest in changing.
Culture In certain areas is not collaborative by Command & Control.
Some managers are afraid of loosing control of the situation and putting into risk their
own personal interests.
A lot of groups / areas / departments are needed to achieve a Business objective
and there are many dependences between them.
They are plenty of complex processes, forced conformance, validation gates, ….
They are lack of engineering practices and tools to allow faster changes with quality,
in order to quickly check their impact in customers / end users.
People don’t really know what is Agile about, the implied cultural change and the needed re-
organization (in order to quickly launch products and adjust them to the market).
And if they ‘d know this, it’s possible that they’d get mentally stuck because of the changes to be
It is not very clear the “what, how and who” of an Agile transformation. “Traditional” trainings are not
helping very much in your real world and they are not enough to change behaviors.
Is there a powerful purpose for the change in your organization? What problems /
pains to they have? Are they economic issues? To be the first in the market, to
survive, …? What is the urgency of this change?
There are many things to be aligned, so you need high level sponsors that also set
priorities in the change and explain what it is about.
As Agile is for improving company results, a key sponsor must be placed in the
Business side in order to act as the ultimate lever for the whole organization.
It’s essential that these sponsors have a idiosyncrasy that is aligned with Agile
(collaborative and open minded – test&learn) and they give example of behavior.
High Management transformation needs of specialized coaching, coaches who
talk their language, who know how to take advantage of the organization and
hierarchy in order to get results, experienced in creating a strategy on cultural
change management and organization re-desing.
When starting introducing Agile, it’s important to identify the right people, early
adopters / volunteers that will ensure success and will act as “social “ ambassadors
by telling the benefits, showing results, why their life have improved.
Coaching is a fast and secure change approach (not only in practices and
techniques but also in the way of thinking and working as a team).
It’s also needed specific coaching in engineering practices and automation in order
to get early feedback.
In order to develop products in an agile, fast
and flexible way, you have to create
autonomous teams that include all end-to-end
skills, so simplifying processes. This re-
organization fosters cultural change (by
changing roles and aligning goals).
You have to set new
collaboration principles with your
providers in order to create more
transparency, work as a team
and jointly improve.
Team work is a differential factor of more
competitive companies. In the start of a
cultural shift, you have to asses the
adherence to teamwork principles and
establish mechanisms/practices in order
to reinforce them.
Managers should be more systemic and
oriented to grow their people (in
competences and empowering them). To
achieve this, a system of 360 feedback
should be in place as well as give them
methods for working in their improvement
You should ensure that time for learning
exists and that this knowledge is spread
among all teams.
You should create a bottom-up improvement
process in order the teams can continuously
identify what they need to run and be
efficient at an organizational level.
It’s crucial to quickly validate your business
value hypotheses in your customers / real
users and nimbly incorporate this feedback
in order to adjust your product to the
market (thing that only you can achieve if
you have a simple organization, oriented to
business initiatives and with a culture of
Identify the levers for your limits.
Think on a strategy to create your
Identify the right people to involve that
will support you.
Create the context step by step, test
& learn. It will take time. Iterate!!