A commitment to the true values of Agile will unlock the problem-solving power of your teams.
In times of economic upheaval, businesses need a vision or strategy that guides their investments in innovation towards a profitable future. But they also need to be able to realise that vision.
The ability to deliver value at pace in a changing environment will be a deciding factor in the survival of many businesses in the coming years. Companies that can rapidly test and validate new ideas, exploring and exploiting opportunities as they arise, will emerge strongest from the current uncertainty.
When it comes to digital innovation, it is now almost universally accepted that the Agile software development methodology offers the most effective framework. Agile’s iterative approach to development allows businesses to de-risk their innovation investments, and its focus on customer collaboration directs teams’ attention to what matters.
According to a global survey by analyst company Forrester Research in 2021, 89% of IT and digital decision-makers have either adopted Agile software development or are planning to do so.
There is a danger, however, that the way in which organisations implement Agile limits their ability to innovate. “The intention behind Agile can occasionally be lost,” says Nick White, data strategy director at Kin + Carta. “It should be a set of principles but, for some companies, it runs the risk of becoming this new set of ceremonies they feel they have to observe.”
Done right, the Agile methodology empowers product teams to solve business problems creatively and focus their attention on customer needs. But if, in the name of Agile, executives take away those teams’ autonomy, it can have the opposite effect. As they prepare for uncertain times, business leaders should recommit to the values and principles of Agile to ensure they have the capacity to innovate, just when it is needed most.