How do I ensure that the Agile transformation within my company gets off to a good start?

04 May

1. The tipping point

People are naturally against change, and it's common to hear phrases such as, "That's how we've always done it here" or "It doesn't work here." Accepting change means accepting the possibility that individuals and organizations are currently not doing things in the best way, or it can even challenge a person's long-standing beliefs or values. Likewise, people will naturally keep their old behavior unless there is an exceptionally good reason to change something. This reason must be so compelling that the status quo becomes simply unacceptable. The motivation must be so strong that change becomes the only reasonable path to success.

In other words, the company must reach its "tipping point" - the point where the overriding organizational need is to bring about the change rather than resist it.

I recommend that you first verify whether people are determined to integrate the Agile culture within the company, whether they have sufficient resources and whether they can count on the enthusiasm of the employees. On the basis of an internal assessment, one can find out if one is ready for this whether certain organizational elements still need to be adjusted. A visual result can then be used to give decisiveness to the decision.

I often had the impression that some business leaders were omitting this first, indispensable phase, based on assumptions that things will be okay. Also, because people only thought of the benefits that an Agile Transformation brings and not the serious company requires such a change for the entire organization. With a realistic outlook and a motivated attitude one can move mountains, so tackle this phase well if you want to start from a positive attitude. That is why I also recommend that you be surrounded by people with experience in Lean-Agile change management, Agile leadership and Agile coaching who can clarify you with the necessary arguments and facts in which situation your company is currently in.

To make the resistance less intense and last less long, a clear transition plan can be very helpful throughout the life cycle of the transformation. Use all possible channels to reach the people within your company and to inform them how they will work and what the impact means for them.

People often tend to see what the change will bring about for them personally.

if the expectations of the employees are not clarified, you will leave on the wrong basis because your employees can react, feel and think in different ways. Before you know it, you are dealing with a whole army of employees who rally behind negative impressions, assumptions and despair. Not recommended to prepare, let alone execute a transformation in this context.


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