According to a Statista survey of software developers, by 2018, 91% of respondents had adopted some type of agile development practices. As agile becomes increasingly entrenched and more organizations realize the benefits of it, the notion of what it means to be agile, and its practices and principles, are evolving and moving out of software development and IT and into the enterprise at large.
As agile takes root, even in non-technical areas, and teams are united around a common purpose, understand how their work contributes to overall strategy, and have effective processes and tools to get their jobs done, companies often undergo a wholesale shift in culture. This cultural shift is a strong indicator that your agile transformation is on the right track.
Following are six signs that this cultural shift is underway in your company and that your agile transformation is on the right track:
The Customer is the Focus
In agile organizations, delivering customer value is the top priority, so their input is welcomed, incorporated, and responded to at every stage of the game. If the customer is truly the focus, your company will have put processes in place to engage with them during product planning, product development, and even after the product is released.
The Organization is Swarming
In agile organizations, the goal is for teams to swarm. That means everyone commits to focusing on and following through on a specific set of objectives, so things get done more quickly, and customers see value faster. If the goal in agile is for teams to swarm, then the executive leadership should swarm as well—there should be alignment and transparency around what people are working on at every level within the company.
People are Empowered to Make Decisions
Agile organizations embrace decentralized decision making. Leadership will certainly set the strategy, but the people with the best understanding of a situation and the relevant domain expertise to address it should be empowered to make decisions about the things that affect their work and their ability to deliver value. When people are truly empowered, micromanagement falls by the wayside and problems get solved faster.
A Culture of Coaching is Pervasive
An agile organization is committed to continuous improvement across every principle. If your agile transformation is on the right track, a culture that embraces coaching will develop. People will be open to giving and receiving feedback—even at the leadership level.
Ideas Bubble Up from Throughout the Organization
As agile practices become more embedded across the company, transparency will increase, and with it, people will have a deeper understanding of how their work contributes to the overall organizational strategy. New ideas will begin to bubble up from all over—not just within product development. Everyone will be able to identify opportunities to drive customer value and process improvement, so there should be a way to capture these ideas and a process for evaluating and implementing them.
Recruiting is Easy
As your culture changes and your processes improve, your employees will be more productive, more focused on the right work, and more fulfilled. They will begin to advocate for your organization as an employer of choice, leveraging contacts within their own networks to attract the best and brightest talent. Your organization will gain a strong, positive reputation—people will know it and want to work there.
It’s important to note that these changes will not happen all at once—they require a shift in mindset and the adoption of a new outlook and new behaviors. If you’re early in your transformation, you may see these characteristics developing in certain divisions, departments, and teams, but with time, training, and encouragement, they can gain traction more broadly.
How Isos Technology Can Help
As a premier Atlassian Platinum and Enterprise Solution Partner with an Agile at Scale specialization, we’re experts in change management for people and processes, as well as tool adoption to support agile practices. Our comprehensive agile consulting services help organizations increase customer and employee satisfaction, improve operations, and enhance their ability to deliver. We offer support for agile transformations, agile coaching, agile training and certification, agile software implementations, maturity assessments, and agile staffing.
To learn more about Isos Technology’s agile services, including Enterprise Agile Coaching, visit isostech.com/services/agile-services.