Transforming to agile

The old ways of a rigid workforce and work rules will no longer be sufficient. We are living in a world where things are changing rapidly. As technology is evolving and changing at a rapid pace, the information we consume every day becomes bigger and multiplied by many factors every month.

This have led to an increase in the time necessary to analyse these mountains of information in order to make the right decisions. As a result the traditional models of managing projects or work are too rigid to respond to the immense pace of change an organisation goes through every day.

It is clear that we are in an unattainable situation and sooner than later the way we work will start to break down. From this we can conclude that in order for organisations to stay relevant they must adapt agile, and adapt to it as soon as possible.


By using some of the following traits of existing agile organisations you can formulate a strategy to transform your organisation. To create an agile organisation you need to develop or nourish:

1. Start-up mentality: In order to become agile we need to think a new company (a start-up). The sense of urgency that is instilled in start-ups increases the focus of employees and pulls everyone together to focus on one goal at a time where everyone contributes to solving the problem.

2. Collaborative environment: Collaboration is key to becoming agile. The sum of the organisation’s knowledge is far greater than the sum of each individual’s “know-how”.

3. Flat and servant leadership: The old model of leadership is not cutting it anymore in the 21st century workplace. Today’s leaders are doers and not rulers, they steer clear from just issuing commands and earn respect by being in the trenches with their teams, putting in the work. In addition to this, an organisation with too many management levels can cause itself to become severely handicapped.

4. Information transparency: In agile teams and organisations all members have access to the same information, this allows them to avoid confusion or misunderstanding when making decisions.

5. Clear strategic vision: The best enabler of success is having a clear goal and mission. Agile organisations have a clear, focus and simple strategic vision.

6. Performance orientation: Members of an agile organisation is evaluated based on their performance. The focus is purely on results, where traditional organisations made use of metrics to evaluate performance. In agile only the results matter as long as no laws were broken in getting there

7. Customer-focused: As the age old saying goes “the customer knows best” or “the customer is always right”, agile teams are focused on the customer more than anything else.

8. Entrepreneurial Spirit: Entrepreneurs take risks. Organisations need to embrace the concept of failing fast and failing forward in order to become agile. The objective of taking risks is to find new ways and better ways of doing things. As a business we must motivate our employees to act fast and effective and by doing so we must allow them from time to time to fail as this is vital to their learning.

9. Lean and flexible resources: In traditional organisations, resources are siloed and not easily (or most of the time not at all) shareable. This creates resources that can’t do anything outside of their job definition. Agile teams are lean and do not carry all of this “extra fat”, they can be shared across any problem or need.

10. Continuous learning: In order to become an agile organisation, you have to become a living and growing organisation. Agile organisations have a hunger for more knowledge and a desire to do better and outsmart competitors

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