I was hired to help out in adopting Agile management. Before I started I had an interview and talked to a top level manager on Lean and how I could help the organization in their journey. In my naivety I actually assumed that we had a similar understanding about what Agile management is. Unfortunately we did not.
What I witnessed was that people where seen as resources and management was very busy making sure all these resources where utilized to the maximum.
Lets take a look at some differences between agile and 'traditional' management.
Lean Agile adoption can only be successful when the people themselves create the necessary changes and therefore are really committed and feel accountable for it. The path to Lean Agile adoption can therefore not be planned in full detail upfront. But the path towards adoption can only emerge, the path can only emerge by walking it!
Moving from a hierarchical command & control organisation to an entrepreneurial networked organisation is quite a challenge. It is difficult step when a manager has to stop telling people how to do things, stop providing ‘answers’, stop making decisions for people, stop wanting to know everything that is going on and it is especially difficult to stop overruling people when things start getting out of ‘control’.
New product development needs innovation if you want to really make a difference. And innovation needs creativity simply because you need to discover new information. The problem with innovation is that it is unpredictable so a defined process with upfront planning is futile. You need to create lots of ideas and then reduce the number of ideas to those that make sense. You need to think creatively!.