Recently I transitioned from being a Lean-Agile Coach / Consultant, working with many clients, to now being a Lead Agile Program Manager for one company. It’s nice to be off the road after 4 years of travel. I’m also enjoying the perspective that you only get being part of a team / company, once you begin to grasp the culture and the political / social model at play in the organization.
Currently I’m engaged with my team in Agile Program Management and an external Agile Coach to examine a hypothesis that there may be a lack of role clarity in the organization and that it may contribute to delivery predictability not being where we’d like it to be. I plan on this effort resulting in series of blog entries chronicling our exploration and experimentation around this topic.
Our initial exploration has begun with building a survey to assess the perception of who does / owns the common activities in the lean-agile software product development work system. In this case the system is for growing and maintaining a SaaS offering. We’re also surveying what people actually do during a given iteration within the current work system.
Based on my past experience, and applying a bit of systems thinking, I would hypothesize that the lack of predictability in delivery is less related to role clarity and more to the lack of explicit policies that enforce some important, basic, lean-agile principles in the work system:
1. Make all work visible
2. Limiting work in process
In fact, the currently perceived risk of lack of role clarity risk may actually be teams engaging in self-organization. Of course autonomy with out clear purpose to focus a team can be detrimental to minimizing waste on a team.
Lots of things to explore so this series should be interesting.