In my opinion, from the perspective of an organization that has gone through such a journey of transformation, the main difference is between doing agile and being agile. By this, I’m talking about the difference between implementing agility as a simple project management methodology and the transformation that accompanies a radical change in an organization, flattening hierarchies and empowering individual team members the power to make key decisions that contribute to its success. . Such a decision is indeed a bold one for any organization, which involves a visionary initiative on the part of its leadership to move forward, believing in the power of transformational results if successful.
For any organization, from startups to large enterprises, that wants to embark on their agile transformation journey, I’d like to offer a few key principles that could make the difference between long-term success and short-term gains.
A cultural change
Agile transformation involves embracing cultural change, where organizational structures are flattened and each team member is empowered by the company’s strategic vision, purpose, and decision-making capabilities to contribute to its growth. and its success, by creating value through every action. Individual team members are no longer just cogs, but are now key levers that guide the future direction of the organization.
Focus on growth rather than goals
The typical approach that any organization usually takes is to set short and long term goals and then work to achieve them. Agile transformation, however, involves a change in mindset from a goal to a growth orientation. While continuing to set micro-goals for employees, the company’s strategic vision becomes a guide that allows employees to row in one direction. Executives at the helm steer the ship, constantly evaluating the voyage, rethinking itineraries based on customer requirements and market dynamics, making course corrections where necessary and identifying winning moments that propel them forward.
Progress is no longer just a matter of survival but of excellence. It’s about investing in the future, while focusing on the present, constantly adapting to change and moving forward.
Vision is what you see in the future. However, today’s culture is what matters. A culture of consistency adds up and sets you up for long-term success and resilience.
I would identify four key success factors in an organization’s agile journey:
a. Focus on relationships: The organizational culture in an agile build has shifted from simple transactional operations to a relationship-based way of working. The focus shifts from individual successes to the collective whole working to build the future of the organization.
b. Ability to self-organize into unified teams: Team members should be empowered and empowered by the principles of agility to quickly organize together, guided by shared goals and the overall vision of the organization.
vs. Attitude of resilience: With a common purpose and vision, employees are empowered with the skills and training to build the muscle and tenacity to overcome the challenges that come their way, backed by the leaders’ confidence in them.
D. A culture of learning: No success is possible in today’s world without the will to constantly learn, improve and transform. In our organization, we have taken the bold step of investing eight hours a week in learning – what we call “learning days”. The investment has paid off, with learning becoming deeply embedded in our culture and productivity having a positive impact as well. In this model, employees no longer focus on being experts in one area but on gaining expertise in all areas.
From confidence in ability to confidence through confirmation
The focus is no longer on individual abilities. Today, the focus has shifted to celebrating success as a team, with the resulting affirmation that builds the power of the collective in embedding and driving an organization’s success.
Communication and transparency
Communication and transparency are key, with the flow of information in a flattened organization becoming more transparent and direct. Not only does this make operations more agile, but it also breaks down barriers and opens up new channels of trust, partnership and collaboration.
As with any other organizational transformation, the key is leadership commitment, trust and faith in the process to see eventual success. Organizations must stay the course in pursuit of agile change management, despite the inevitable challenges that may come their way. It is only by challenging the status quo and taking bold action that true long-term positive transformation can be achieved.
About the author: Vijai Kishan, Manager – Personal Investing, Fidelity Investments India.
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