Want to transform fast? Stop doing all transformations in one go.

In today's super VUCA world, enterprises are facing a mandate to transform in order to meet the ever changing needs of customer / market. Whether it is about launching the next major phase in an organization, executing a new corporate strategy to achieve breakthrough performance, enabling a new executive leader to take charge, or integrating an acquisition—is fraught with challenges. Often we see that departmental silos, conflicting priorities and lack of aligned vision - leads to multiple transformations running in parallel creating a super busy work environment. Let's take an example of an organization "BusyBee Incorporation". Suppose that Human Resources introduces a new leadership transformation program for new age leadership. The CIO has already started a digital transformation initiative to modernise service offerings and customer experience. Marketing initiates a business agility transformation to cater for all business functions in a more nimble and agile manner. Manufacturing kicks off a Lean program that will eventually touch Marketing, Sales, and Finance. IT kicks...
Read More
Sprint Report – Good or Bad

Sprint Report – Good or Bad

Transparency and Visibility Visibility and transparency are two key tenants of agile.While we say working software is the true measure of progress, there is more to progress than working software when it comes to working with multiple teams having dependencies and integrations. In enterprise environments a team is seldom an island – you need to work with other teams to deliver end to end outcomes. Having worked with many different enterprises, I consider “visibility of progress” as basic hygiene. Whether you use a real time dashboard OR a physical board – it really doesn’t discount the need for providing visibility. In a distributed world you have multiple stakeholders involved throughout the delivery cycle apart from your Product Owner, you need a way to demonstrate progress updates for the entire extended team of people. When it makes sense to have a sprint report? In my view, sprint reports are not evil. 1. When you don’t have real time dashboard or tool to visualise progress centrally at...
Read More
Leadership for Banks of Future

Leadership for Banks of Future

Banks of future might not look like what they are today. When you hear the term "bank", the visual that comes to the mind is ATMs, Teller counters, Big buildings and Branch offices and so on. Will this be the trend going forward? - I doubt so. Banking is becoming personal and individualistic as we make our pass through the digital everything world. In my view the best banking experience in coming days would be when you have "NO BANKs" i.e. where people have access to financial tools without explicitly asking for it. The way we handle our finances becomes so intuitive and part of our daily life that we don't feel a need to go to bank anymore. Our needs are handled in a seamless way thorough a personalized experience. The banks of future would be those who truly embrace the cross-pollination of technology and human as one. And to visualize this you need new age leaders and a...
Read More
Multi-Speed IT Environment – Lessons from field

Multi-Speed IT Environment – Lessons from field

In majority of phased enterprise agile transformation programs, Multi-speed IT is unavoidable. When I say Multi-speed IT, I refer to a world where agile and waterfall (legacy) initiatives co-exist and need to work hand in hand to deliver business outcomes. In last two decades, I had the opportunity to work with different enterprises in variety of industries helping their transformation journey. Every organization is different even if they operate in same industry. The business needs, enterprise portfolio and IT landscape vary from one organization to another. The agenda of transformation also differs from one to another resulting in different approaches, initiatives and timelines. No matter what the approach an organization adopts for transformation (change and growth), the journey from current state to future state requires innovative strategies to sustain business operations during the period of transformation. In real world, no system works in isolation i.e. agile initiatives depend on integration with traditional legacy systems and vice versa. The pace at which you can deliver value from your agile initiatives is usually limited by how fast your traditional...
Read More
Win Your DevOps Conversation with Business Leaders

Win Your DevOps Conversation with Business Leaders

In today’s world, every business is driven by software. We are living in an era where technology drives behaviors, decisions and business outcomes. Any time you have an app or website or software element, software development becomes critical part of day-to-day business strategy — even for non-traditional software companies. Because of the mandatory role software development has taken on in everyday business, C-level executives are taking a deeper interest in how software can be delivered in an effective way. Before we begin dwelling into the specifics of DevOps, I would like to sincerely empathize with all these executives for their patience – they are the most bombarded targets with buzzwords by all consulting powerhouses, vendors and advisers. I truly appreciate their spirit to keep up with such adversities. Let’s get started! Irrespective of how you approach it, as a trusted adviser, it is an uphill task to get your message across in crowd of ‘buzzwords’, especially more so because human attention span is...
Read More
Scaling DevOps – take a holistic approach to drive business value

Scaling DevOps – take a holistic approach to drive business value

The DevOps conversation with a senior executive:  Exec: We have best of the tools in world to cater for each stage of software lifecycle. We are very advanced in our DevOps journey. Me: Great to hear. Are you getting value out of these tools? How you are measuring success? Exec: I am not sure. There are teams who are using various tools and then there are some who are not. We are not consistent. I guess we are getting good returns in some areas and some are just getting started. Me: So, do we have a roadmap or guidance for teams around what tools to use and how these tools work together? Exec: We are open and flexible. We allow Developers and architects to recommend and use what works for them. We have a tools library but you can add to it if required. We don’t have a published guideline as such.  Me: That sound more like bring your own tools. Do you think teams know...
Read More
Top 3 Agile Transformation Challenges or Blockers

Top 3 Agile Transformation Challenges or Blockers

Introduction Agile needs no introduction in today's world. The term gets used more often than 'computer' in business context. Organizations are increasingly looking at "Agile" as their default approach of software delivery. As larger organizations attempt to apply agile software development methodologies at enterprise-level, I am attempting to list down top 3 challenges/blockers/barriers below: Lack of Executive Commitment People and Culture Neglecting the need for Technical Excellence Let us elaborate briefly each of these challenges in the section below. 1. Lack of Executive Commitment By its very nature, an agile transformation programme affects large numbers of people in the organisation and it's a change that needs to be managed effectively at all levels. One of the top priority is to establish an effective working relationship between all those that have an interest in the successful outcome of the programme. It sounds simple but hard to achieve. More often at executive level the boundaries of communication and political dynamics result in lack of involvement. Most executives...
Read More