28 September - 30 September 2016

Churchill College, Cambridge, UK

Wicked problems in organisational design

Simon Powers Adventures with Agile

Session type: Presentation
Session duration: 60 minutes

About this Presentation

Balancing deep specialism in individuals and teams against being able to prioritise effectively, balancing commitment based short term goals against feature team and open source code base, and balancing cost of delay against retraining staff to be more t-shaped are just a few of the trade-offs that organisation design professionals face during the reshaping of an organisation in an agile rollout.

Often these are the hard cultural problems that we face and without making decisions consciously, organisations will optimise around things like keeping people busy, maintaining the status quo, management empire building and other organisational dysfunctions. Sadly, many organisations simply don’t have the skill or training to even see that these problems exist, let alone know what to do with them.

Scaling frameworks often have some of these trade-offs baked in, and the decisions have already been made for us. This is why often they are hard to implement or don’t seem to work. Only in uncovering the real trade-offs can we learn how to make it work in our context.

This session gives an introduction to the real-life choices from real-world experience that almost always need to be made in large scale agile and lean transformations.

About the Speaker

Simon Powers has 20 years of product development experience with small and huge companies alike. He is an organisational design coach using agile/lean as the toolkit for his work. He believes agile can change the way we work for the better, bringing about a much needed change back towards a more wholesome way of transparent working, with respect, honesty and courage to speak up resulting in greater innovation and faster time to market.

He is the founder of Adventures with Agile (AWA), a global community of practice for scaling agile and organisational change. He runs the AWA support network and consultancy, and practices what he teaches.

He was the lead coach on the best implementation of agile in the public sector at the 2015 Agile Awards and one of the finalists for the award for promoting agile globally in 2015.


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