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What is the most interesting outcome you have achieved as an agile consultant?

What is the most interesting outcome you have achieved as an agile consultant?

Insights from an Agile Consultant

I can honestly say that this is a really interesting question, as ‘interesting’ can be interrupted in many ways. How you look at it, for instance, there can be a ‘good’ interesting and a ‘not’ so good ‘interesting’.

Either way, I can say that as an Agile consultant, I’ve been fortunate to have witnessed various interesting outcomes. Needless to say, some were quite rewarding and interesting, and others less so.

However, both types of experiences offer great insights and rich learning opportunities that, over the years, have undoubtedly helped me guide my clients better. 💼

The Status Quo

I will start with a not-so-good outcome that I have experienced as an Agile consultant, and it’s a particularly thought-provoking example, too, as it involved a well-established company in the United States, a company so traditional that the office cubicles still sported oak panelling!

Remember, never to mistake an organisation’s old-school aesthetics for complacency. With substantial cash flow, this particular company saw no immediate need for change. After all, change implies risk, and why risk disrupting a profitable status quo? 💰

However, using my knowledge of development and progress, I managed to rally their IT leadership and management around Agile and DevOps principles. On the whole, the team was excited about transitioning towards continuous delivery, enhancing feedback loops, and using data-driven insights for decision-making.

Unfortunately, about a year later, I learned the organisation had chosen to revert to their old practices. As a result, these advocates for change, the same people eager for Agile transformation, had left or been let go. While it was a disappointing turn of events, I like to believe that these individuals moved on to organisations more receptive to innovation. 🔄

An Agile Success Story

I’m happy to say that in contrast to the previous example of an interesting outcome, let’s talk about a resounding success story that unfolded in Utah, in the US, in a company called Backcountry. Although Backcountry is a clothing manufacturer, what set them apart was their impressive tech team. Nearly half of their staff were software engineers responsible for building their procurement software.

This company’s operation impressed me as their in-house team managed everything, from manufacturing to logistics and even point of sale. This was a company ripe for the implementation of Agile practices, and we seized the opportunity. 📈

Holistic Approach to Agile Training

I was eager to get started at Blackcountry, and so we began with Scrum training. Within no time, we then extended it to almost everyone in the company.

It was great to see attendees, from the CEO to the forklift operator in the warehouse. Everyone was involved. This extensive involvement allowed everyone to see the impact of their feedback on the final product, creating a sense of ownership and cohesion within the company.

For me, it was the forklift operator’s interest which was followed by the eagerness to learn Agile was particularly memorable. Initially sceptical about the training’s relevance to his role, by the end of the first day, he became one of the most engaged participants.

It wasn’t long before the forklift driver realised his unique position to influence how the software worked for him and the organisation at large.

Encouraged by this transformation, I knew this was a testament to the power of Agile when it’s embraced holistically by a company and its employees. 🙌

Agile Transformation

In this case, the impact of this Agile transformation was phenomenal. Even 12 years later, I receive messages from the Blackcountry describing their Agile training as a “game changer.” But I can’t take ownership of that change. It was their commitment and their embracement of the Agile training that sparked the transformation.

These two examples show that when everyone from the CEO to the warehouse operator commits to Agile, it creates a ripple effect throughout the organisation. It shows the level of dedication and the importance they assign to the Agile journey.

This was undoubtedly one of the most fulfilling experiences of my career as an Agile consultant, which continues to inspire me. Participants from this training have since spread the Agile spirit in companies like Coca-Cola and Healthgrades, perpetuating the ripple effect. 🎆

Welcome the Agile Journey

As these two very different stories above show, Agile can either transform your company or, when resisted, leave your organisation stagnant.

So, are you ready to start your Agile journey?

Let’s build the future of work together! 🚀

Naked Agility is an #agile consultancy that specializes in #scrumtraining, #agilecoaching and #agileconsulting to help teams evolve, integrate, and continuously improve.

We recognize the positive impact that a happy AND inspired workforce can have on customer experience, and we actively help organizations to tap into the power of creative, collaborative, and high-performing teams that is unique to #agile and #scrum environments.

If you are interested in #agiletraining, visit https://nkdagility.com/training/

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