Program Spotlight: Management Structure + Agility

Sep 01, 2020

We live in an eventful age, for better or worse. We’ve seen major shifts to work and everyday life, and we’ve had to adapt. Sometimes that happens fast. Like, overnight-fast. Agility is the quality that helps us make those quick pivots.

Think of it as a way to practice preparedness. We can try to plan ahead for every worst-case scenario. Or, we can develop ways of working that are responsive and experimental so we can adapt to the moment in the moment.

When we talk about the ability to do that as a group—at the team or organizational level—many of the methods we use are grounded in the Agile movement. Agile is a way of organizing people and work that was developed by software companies who needed to structure their teams and workflows so they could develop products responsively. And because Agile makes it simple to coordinate fast and adaptable work at scale, it has spread to many other industries.

There are a lot of trendy Agile rulebooks and playbooks out there, but this isn’t one of them. We don’t expect anyone to leave here and restructure a team or organization around the one true form of Agile. (There’s no such thing.) Instead, we’re going to look beneath the trends, at Agile’s foundational tools, skills, and systems—and at how they help us respond to new challenges and opportunities as they happen.

This Field Manual introduces the Agile mindset and explores how we can apply it to the way we work. It starts with a look at the high-level principles that support Agile ways of working. Then, we'll look at an example of a company that put these methods into practice to allow employees to share (and learn from) mistakes globally. It then dives into one of the most important innovations supporting Agile management: the stand-up meeting. And, finally, it asks us to think about when and how we can be more Agile on our teams and in our organizations.

The Agility Field Manual in the Management II Program addresses these four questions:

Want to dive deeper? We have three Programs in our Management series. Find out how your team can take them together in the Nomadic Academy.

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