“We must be informed and Agile during this time. Know who your customers are, know what they need, and be prepared to delight!” ~ Steve Denning
In the book ‘Diffusion of Innovations‘ Everett Rogers provides a perspective of how, why and at what rate new ideas spread in society. According to Rogers, in order for new ideas to become self-sustainable, they must be widely adopted.
Plotted over time, the rate at which new ideas are adopted typically follows a ‘bell curve’ pattern, showing the order in which different groups adopt new ideas. These adopter groups are as follows;
Innovators >> Early Adopters >> Early Majority >> Late Majority >> Laggers
Looking at the widespread use of Agile in software development today — and the rate at which companies from different industries have taken to it over the last few years — I think it’s safe to say that Agile uptake is currently somewhere between the Early and Late Majority stage.
The speed at which new companies are taking to Agile is a good thing – especially when you consider the fact that only a few years ago many organisations still viewed Agile as a ‘fad’ that would come and go as quickly as the British summer!
However, in their eagerness not to get left behind, a large number of companies are rushing to ‘do’ Agile without any understanding (and in some cases, any awareness) of the fundamental values, principles and practices that collectively make ‘Agile’ agile. They also overlook the cultural and organisational changes needed to get Agile working for them.
In a recent talk, Forbes writer and author of ‘The Leader’s Guide to Radical Management‘ Steve Denning explained that in the newly emerging Creative Economy, the true “winners” will be those companies able to delight their customers and end-users. He further added that in today’s constantly-changing economic climate, agility and effective leadership are key to putting customers first and responding quickly to their needs.
In this short video, Jennifer Bonine outlines a few things leaders should consider if they want to realise the financial and speed to market benefits Agile has to offer. A strategic C-Suite advisor for some of the most respected Fortune 100 companies in the areas of technology strategic roadmap, quality assurance, organisational development and change management, Jennifer has a wealth of knowledge and experience helping organisations successfully align Agile with their strategic objectives.
(This interview was recorded at the Agile Development and Better Software Conference East 2013, Sheraton Hotel, Boston. For more information on upcoming SQE conferences, visit: http://sqe.com/conferences)
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