It is everywhere, both praised and maligned but never ignorable.
You may have heard of it in the technology sphere, as in Agile Development, and perhaps also in the business sphere as the methodology permeates all part of business management.
To close off my series on process, it is worth addressing Agile as the hot topic of process nowadays. I have used it in both software development and business management, and in my view it can be effective as well as restrictive. Adapting something like agile is difficult, but possible and advisable.
Here to tell you more are the experts who have already written extensively on this trend.
Though the principles of agile were originally developed for software, they apply to almost every other area of your organization. Collaboration, open communication, trust and independence, efficiency, and continuous delivery are the foundation of agile and they can make a lasting positive impact almost anywhere in your organization.
Though Agile was created with software in mind, non-tech teams have begun adopting Agile. A notable example is NPR has used Agile to reduce programming costs by up to 66%. Like the folks at NPR, many non-tech teams have found that employing an Agile mindset and using Agile practices can help their team or business get more done, make their customers happier, and make their teams more collaborative.
Bringing Agile to the Whole Organization – Harvard Business Review (Subscription Required)
When I ask managers if their organizations practice “agile” they almost always say yes. Probing a bit deeper reveals that most of this agility starts and ends with the product development teams – specifically software engineering. There is rarely a mention of “agile in the HR group” or “continuous improvement in finance.” And yet, it is in these infrastructural disciplines that agility must take root to support software-driven businesses.
In basic terms, the agile approach and methodology embodies the notion of being able to fail fast and recover even faster in a world that accepts continuous change as standard. Agile places value on individuals and interactions over processes and tools. It is a mindset that is open to a potentially unlimited number of practices.
Traits of a Truly Agile Business – Accenture
Learn more about how the Accenture study on agility explores the common characteristics of agile businesses.
A Business Leader’s Guide to Agile – Digital McKinsey
“Agile promises rapidly evolving software and substantial business benefits, but it requires new habits from everyone: from IT and from business partners.”