Monday, April 24, 2017

Introduction to Agile Leadership

According to the Forbes Magazine, “Leadership is a process of social influence, which maximizes
the efforts of others, towards the achievement of a goal.”  Leadership is being thought of here as
“doing the right thing”.

The discipline of Agile leadership encompasses other disciplines like Leadership theory,
traditional project management, and Agile methods. The illustration also indicates some of the well-known traits of leadership that include servant leadership, empowerment, and
risk management. It is recommended to take a thorough look at the image and understand the
different facets of leadership.

Agile leadership encompasses other disciplines, such as:
Servant Leadership
Modeling the way
Empowering the team
Visioning, and
Risk Management

Note that the Agile leadership is essential to guide the team through the Team Formation stages.

Leadership Best Practices

The best practices followed by a successful Agile leader are as follows:
 Model desired behavior: A leader should follow the four most highly valued characteristics of a leader: Honesty, forward-looking, competency, and inspiring.
Create and communicate a vision: A Leader should define clear goal or a vision for the future in accordance with the organizational goals.
Enable others to act: A leader should foster collaboration by building trust, and strengthen others by sharing power.
Challenge the status quo: A leader should search for innovative ways to change, grow, and improve by experimenting and taking risks.
Involve the right people and encourage them: A leader should recognize contributions of the team and appreciate individual excellence.

Adaptive Leadership

Adaptive leadership is a practical leadership framework that helps individuals and organizations
adapt and thrive in challenging environments.

‘Inspect’ and ‘Adapt’ are the two common themes in Agile project management. Agile leadership can accelerate and sustain organizational agility.

Adaptive leadership has the following two aspects:

1. Doing Agile drives the organization towards gaining agility not just in project management, but also at strategic and business levels.
2. Being Agile requires leaders to be adaptive; inclusive, exploring, and adopt facilitative leadership style.

Adaptive Leadership—’Doing Agile’ Tools

Agile leaders should use the following execution levers to achieve the business goals of responsiveness, agility, profitability, market share, and customer satisfaction.

Quality: It is managing technical debt which, if not addressed correctly, leads to high cost and risk.
Doing less: The project teams should do the simplest thing possible that delights the customer.

Engage or Inspire: Agile leadership should encourage and promote the concept of self-organizing teams that have autonomy, mastery, and purpose.

Speed-to-value: The three components of the Agile triangle, such as quality, value, and constraints, need to be managed properly to realize business value.

Management vs. Leadership

An Agile leader has to embrace the Agile principles of being flexible and adaptable, and also motivate others to follow it. Management and leadership are often believed to be synonymous with each other,
but they are not.

The differences between the focus of management and that of leadership are as follows:

Management focuses on tasks or things, leadership focuses on people.
Management focuses on control, leadership focuses on empowerment.
Management focuses on efficiency, leadership focuses on effectiveness.
Management focuses on doing things right, leadership focuses on doing the right things.
Management focuses on speed, leadership focuses on direction, and
Management focuses on practices, leadership focuses on principles.

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