Agile is defined as the ability to move quickly and easily. If you translate this concept to software development, Agile is the ability to coordinate a project while being able to react quickly to changes in your environment, keep risks to a minimum and quickly reach your objectives.
But how will Agile help? The Agile methodology is comparable to a set of “dance steps” that are guiding the team to deliver a working software. The Agile Manifesto has some ground rules:
Individuals and interactions over processes and tools
Working software over comprehensive documentation
Customer collaboration over contract negotiation
Responding to change over following a plan
Agile measures success mainly through customer satisfaction, which is known through frequent releases of working parts of the product, built buy a small cross-functional team.
Corporate culture is tough to change. Even more when a company is already profitable and running well without the use of Agile methodologies, why should they change the process?
Agile is all about long-term return. Agile methodologies will help the company have higher product quality, higher customer satisfaction, better project control, reduced risks and in fine a better ROI.
There are several steps to follow that will help you change the processes in the organisation:
- Sense of urgency
An evolving market with increased competitor’s pressure, will bring you evidence that it’s time to change faster. Define and create a bunch of evidences and be able to communicate them. The important point is to create an urgency around why the change is needed.
- Vision of change
Establish a vision : what should it look like and what do we want to achieve with this transformation. The vision will help to create a strategy for achieving change.
- Communicate about the vision
You need to create positive awareness about the project. The vision is strongly positive, your collaborators will adhere to it. Go beyond the words and build the perfect software without waste. If your collaborators are not convinced by the words in your vision, they will be now.
- Create short-term wins
Use the power of the virtuous cycle: winning motivates people towards new wins, and makes the process go even better. Create a first wave of short-term wins to get people’s motivation.
- Consolidate wins
Keep going, keep pushing and recognize the team that made the improvements by supporting the effort they made to make it possible and reinforce good behaviours they are doing.
Contribution from José Manuel LOPEZ ALPANEZ.