It is not uncommon to find IT organizations that do not experience as much success as they originally anticipated from their initial Agile Transformation attempts. In many cases the phrase widely attributed to Peter Drucker “Culture eats Strategy for Breakfast” is definitely a root cause for a lot of these situations, as Agile Transformations are certainly not about mechanics alone. However, there are several other legacy patterns, behaviors, misconceptions, and even educational gaps that are still common in the IT industry in a broader sense, and are inhibiting organizations from maximizing the potential of their Agile Transformations.
All of these conditions introduce economic inefficiencies that are rarely studied in detail, and as a result, they continue to persist and incubate, simply because “everyone else is doing the same thing”. These inefficiencies have been around for a long time, and in fact, most of them pre-date the Agile process, but they are clearly being exposed via the Agile process now. The costs associated with of some of the inefficiencies that we typically uncover in our consulting practice are quite staggering, as we highlight in our training case studies. The fact that we frequently encounter the same inefficiencies across many organizations supports the theory that there is a fundamental gap of understanding on how to identify and how to deal with these particular issues. Some examples of common, repeatable problems we have seen include:
- A lack of understanding of Value-Side decision making (vs. Cost-side decision making)
- A lack of understanding of how to avoid repeating the same costly mistakes others have made in the past
- A lack of understanding of Return on Investment (ROI)
- A lack of understanding of adverse repercussions if certain decisions that appear “profitable” on the surface are made
- A lack of understanding of how to reduce the risk of making IT investment decisions that yield low or no value
- A lack of understanding on how to measure actual Value and ROI after production release
- A lack of understanding of the importance of limiting Work In Progress (WIP) to reduce waste (From Lean / KanBan theory)
- A lack of understanding on how to structure 3d party Agile Contracts up front, in order to avoid inefficiency costs
The Agilenomics™ brand of training focuses on exposing the “elephant of inefficiency in the room” using simple techniques designed to expose each inefficiency for what it is, and provide those being trained with options to prevent repeating the same strategic and tactical mistakes that we keep encountering in the industry.