Back in my CIO days I used to say “execute or be executed.” But I’m more psychologically aware these days. To the point where I’m sometimes told, “forget psychology, if they can’t deliver we’ll find somebody who can!” Here’s a good read on balancing the Agile mindset with business realities at Pepsi.
I’ve done Agile consulting and coaching (two very different things) since 2005. Back then it was easy: stand up a Scrum team. Today we’re doing business agility, at scale, across the enterprise, and including suppliers on the front end and customers on the back end. That’s no easy feat!
But Agile it’s no longer about local optimization of IT but about the business and delivering business results. That’s as it should be.
There are two kinds of Agilists in the world: 1) those who talk mostly about Agile, and 2) those who talk mostly about the business. Don’t mishear me: I’m all about Agile mindset, culture, psychology, etc. But the most important thing I’ve learned at IBM, my primary client for the past two years? “Show me results or I’ll show you the door.”
That sounds harsh, but it’s how the game of business is played; it’s the way all professional sports are played, in fact. And many of us Agilists need to up our game. While we’re talking Agile, all our execs hear is “blah blah blah.” Because they speak one and only one language: $$$. If you can’t go there go home.