Adaptive Leadership

To inspire executives and managers to build adaptive/agile organizations and provide them with the framework and tools to do it.

I have been involved in the Agile movement for many years, so what part of the movement am I passionate about today? Over the years I’ve been involved in hundreds of agile projects—mostly successful. But project successes have not created enough agile organizations. The failure rate of adaptive/agile transformations has been high. Recently in Australia, one of the speakers described his company’s legal staff doing story cards on the wall and stand ups. That’s a transformation success story, when agile is practiced throughout IT, and spreads further. Agile Imagineering creates a vision of the future, like expanding agility throughout IT and then organization-wide, that is transformational.

My personal mission statement is “To inspire executives and managers to build adaptive/agile organizations and provide them with the framework and tools to do it.” We often hear statements about managers “supporting” an agile initiative. That’s not enough, managers and executives have to both be inspired and inspire others. Inspiration, engagement, and commitment are keys to real transformation. And, it’s not enough to Do agile, processes and practices, leaders must Be agile—embracing the values, principles, and behaviors.

Adaptive/Agile transformations are not about changing, they are about adapting. Change happens. The goal is to grow people and organizations that both respond to change and generate change for competitors. Companies operate in an ever-changing ecosystem, bombarded by technology change, competition change, economic change, demographic change, customer change. Responsiveness to these changes, adapting appropriately to them, is a strategic capability that must engage an entire organization—from individual contributors to chief executives. This is the goal of adaptive/agile transformations—of Agile Imagineering.

A video of my Adaptive Leadership/Enterprise Agility presentation.