Observing and Enabling The Agile Mindset

Agile is actually an approach and a Mindset, whereas most people misunderstand it as a set off practices. There are umpteen examples of people implementing the Agile practices and artefacts, but are failing to get the intended positive results. This is a classic problem of ‘doing Agile’ as opposed to aiming to ‘be Agile’. The key to getting the optimal benefits is having the Agile Mindset.

Mindset is abstract and hence one needs to understand it based on what is visible in behaviours, policies etc. The talk is about not only what these visible characteristics are, but also about what can be some of the enablers to move towards achieving the Agile Mindset. It has been proven that Leadership of an organization plays a key role in enabling the right Mindset, and hence this talk is meant for Leaders.

 

 
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Outline/structure of the Session

  • What Is Agile Mindset
  • Observing Agile Mindset
  • Agile Mindset Enablers
  • Q&A

Learning Outcome

 

  1. The importance of the Agile Mindset
  2. Visible characteristics which indicate that the team, leaders and the organization as a whole have the Agile Mindset
  3. What steps can be taken to move towards the Agile Mindset

Target Audience

Leaders

schedule Submitted 4 years ago

Comments Subscribe to Comments

comment Comment on this Proposal
  • Joel Tosi
    By Joel Tosi  ~  4 years ago
    reply Reply

    Could you explain what you mean by the Agile mindset? I could see it go a few ways but want to make sure I understand your approach.

    If you could say one thing attendees would be able to do their first day back to work after attending your session, what would that be? How will you enable that?

    • Sunil Mundra
      By Sunil Mundra  ~  4 years ago
      reply Reply

      Hi Joel,

      Thanks for your feedback.

      In my view, mindset is that ingredient, which, when absent, will not yield optimal results of Agile Adoption/Transformation, despite 'doing' all the Agile practices. The Agile mindset is the bridge between 'doing Agile and 'being' Agile.


      There are many organizations which I have come across which are regularly doing all the practices like stand up meetings, retros etc., but are not getting meaningful results. The reason, in my view, is the lack of Agile mindset.


      Obviously, a mindset is an intangible, and therefore, what I am saying that there are some noticeable indicators which bring out whether the mindset exists or not. E.g. Teams looking at failure as a learning opportunity is an indicator of Agile mindset.

      Essentially, the Agile mindset ties up toe the core values of Agile, viz. Simplicity, Courage, Communication, Respect and Feedback.

      I plan to offer practical tips on enabling the mindset/removing blockers to achieve the mindset, viz. change of metrics from task measurement to value measurement.

      Hope this clarifies.

       

       

       

       

      • Doc Norton
        By Doc Norton  ~  4 years ago
        reply Reply

        The values you list are the core values of XP. The articulated core values of agile are different. Not trying to nit-pick; I just think it important we're clear with our language.

        There is dissonance for me around the use of the phrase "agile mindset". Linda Rising gave a keynote at Agile2012 where she talked about the Agile Mindset. Since then she has given various presentations on the same subject, solidifying, in my mind, what the phrase "Agile Mindset" means. Not that she has a trademark on the phrase, but perhaps there is another phrase you could use that would convey what you want and not collide with a relatively established definition?

         

        • Sunil Mundra
          By Sunil Mundra  ~  4 years ago
          reply Reply

          Hi Doc,

          Thanks for your feedback. Yes, you are right, the 5 values which you have mentioned have been associated with XP. Can you please aqdvise what Agile values would be? I serached hard and could only find principles like working software etc. I am not able to articulate the difference between principles and values, but I think there is a difference. And I am unable to find anyone clearly calling out the Agile values. Any guidance from you will be very helpful.

          On the issue of using the word 'mindset', I went through Linda's presentation on teh Agile mindset, and I did not find any definition which she has put out. Once again, please do me a favour and advise where I can find her definition of the Agile mindset. Given taht she is a celebrity, I will be more than happy to include her definition in my presentation.

          At least as of now, I am unable to think of a better term other than mindset, to indicate what I am planning to spak about. My presentation is not about what the mindset is-there is just one slide on trying to say whay it is. It is more about what are some things which indicate whether the mindset exists, and more importantly, how one can go about enabling it.

          • Doc Norton
            By Doc Norton  ~  4 years ago
            reply Reply

            From agilemanifesto.org

            We are uncovering better ways of developing
            software by doing it and helping others do it.
            Through this work we have come to value:

            Individuals and interactions over processes and tools
            Working software over comprehensive documentation
            Customer collaboration over contract negotiation
            Responding to change over following a plan

            That is, while there is value in the items on
            the right, we value the items on the left more.

             

            • Sunil Mundra
              By Sunil Mundra  ~  4 years ago
              reply Reply

              Hi,

              Please aqdvise the purpose behind posting the Agile Manifesto as a comment on my proposal. I am not srue what response you are expecting from me on this.

          • Doc Norton
            By Doc Norton  ~  4 years ago
            reply Reply

            Sorry for the delay. I somehow missed your reply.

            I don't think Linda actually gives a formal definition of an agile mindset as much as she tells a story of two different ways of thinking; a fixed mindset and a growth mindset. She then equates the growth mindset with the "agile mindset".

            • Sunil Mundra
              By Sunil Mundra  ~  4 years ago
              reply Reply

              Yes, I agree with you.

      • Joel Tosi
        By Joel Tosi  ~  4 years ago
        reply Reply

        It does help clarify some. Would you happen to have some slides or reference deck / video I could look at?  I'm looking for concrete takeaways for the audience.  As you mentioned, a mindset - while important - is intangible.

         

        Thanks much,

        Joel

        • Sunil Mundra
          By Sunil Mundra  ~  4 years ago
          reply Reply

          Hi Joe,

          My presentation deck is a shape where I can share it, even though it mey not be fully ready. Please provide your email address so taht I can mail it to you.

          • Joel Tosi
            By Joel Tosi  ~  4 years ago
            reply Reply

            Hi Sunil,

               Would you be able to link to it here for the rest of the reviewers to see? If it is not finalized, that is completely fine.  I'm just trying to get a feel for how you are approaching this.  It is an interesting space to discuss, and seeing your slides or your approach will greatly help me assess and provide any pointers or ideas that I think might help.

             

            Best,

            Joel

            • Sunil Mundra
              By Sunil Mundra  ~  4 years ago
              reply Reply

              Hi Joe,

              Truly appreciate thee fact that you are wanting to help.

              I am not cocmfortable sharing the deck with all reviewers, but am glad to share with anyone who specifically asks for it. Hence, I am requesting you to provide me your email id. My email id is sunilrm@thoughtworks.com, should you wish to write to me directly.

  • Naresh Jain
    By Naresh Jain  ~  4 years ago
    reply Reply

    Request you to please respond to the comments below.

    • Sunil Mundra
      By Sunil Mundra  ~  4 years ago
      reply Reply

      Hi Naresh,

      I have responded to all the 3 comments, a few minutes ago.

  • steve ropa
    By steve ropa  ~  4 years ago
    reply Reply

    I think what might be useful is a little more information on the actual content of the presentation. Your bio shows quite a bit of experience presenting to various audiences. Would it be possible to post an example? Even if it isn't this specific talk, something that would show a little more around what your style is.

    • Sunil Mundra
      By Sunil Mundra  ~  4 years ago
      reply Reply

      Hi Steve,

      Thanks for your feedback.

      In my session, I want to initially bring about the poont that just be doing practices, one cannt get the intended results. The missing ingedient being the mindset.

      Since mindset is intangible, I plan to call out some visible indicators which bring out the presence or absence of Agile mindset. E.g. Looking at failure as a opportunity is an indicator of the Agile mindset.

      I then plan to talk about some enablers which would help achieve the mindset. E.g. changing the metrics from task measruement to value measurement.

      Not sue if the above deails reflect my style. I will be happy to provide more details around my style, if you can please be a little more specific.

  • Sachin goel
    By Sachin goel  ~  4 years ago
    reply Reply

    Hi - I would tend to agree with the mindset concept. I have seen in my organisation a strong thrust when leaders are comitted. Futher focusing on mindset and not practices help projects to tailor practices for themselves. I would be interested to know more about your session, your way to delivery, past experiences etc. Please advise how can I ?

    • Sunil Mundra
      By Sunil Mundra  ~  4 years ago
      reply Reply

      Hi Sachin,

      Thanks for your feedback.

      In my session, I want to initially bring about the poont that just be doing practices, one cannt get the intended results. The missing ingedient being the mindset.

      Since mindset is intangible, I plan to call out some visible indicators which bring out the presence or absence of Agile mindset. E.g. Looking at failure as a opportunity is an indicator of the Agile mindset.

      I then plan to talk about some enablers which would help achieve the mindset. E.g. changing the metrics from taask measruement to value measurement.

      With respect to my background, I have been in ThoughtWorks for almost 3 years and have consulted with multiple organizations on Agile Adoption/TRansformation.  For more details on my background, please view my LinkedIn profile at

      http://www.linkedin.com/profile/view?id=6047083&trk=nav_responsive_tab_profile

       


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