Achieving Business Buy-in for Agile


This is the slides and materials from my hands-on workshop at Agile Cambridge 2015 on 2nd October 2015 on Achieving Business Buy-in for Agile: Overcoming Objections, Obstacles and Opposition.

Agile within an IT team only takes us so far, especially if the wider organisation uses waterfall processes for product/project management, traditional budgeting and siloed manager-heavy hierarchies.

During this hands-on session we’ll collaboratively explore 12 common objections and obstacles to growing Agile beyond IT teams.  Using the power of the group, we’ll uncover a range of practical ways to win hearts and minds, overcome opposition, transform non-technical understandings of Agile and get broad-based buy-in for change.


These days many of us have success using Agile within IT teams.  

But that success will always be limited when the wider organisation functions in a non-Agile way; using waterfall processes for product and project management, traditional budgeting and old-fashioned siloed manager-heavy hierarchies.  Confused priorities, impossible workloads and Victorian scheduling and inspection practices can interfere with and ultimately destroy the best Agile teams.

So what can we do?  How do we get buy-in and successfully sell Agile more widely throughout the organisation?  How can we avoid our island of excellence being crushed by the often well-meaning but ignorant bulldozers of senior management?

Answering these questions goes to the heart of Agile, the benefits it offers both individuals and the whole business, the language we use and the way we approach and talk to people.  It’s as much – if not more – about the questions we ask as the answers we promote.

This session will explore how get buy-in for Agile across the business.  We’ll cover 12 common objections and obstacles to growing Agile beyond IT teams.  Using specific examples and a simple framework, we’ll explore in small groups practical ways to win hearts and minds, transform non-technical understandings of Agile and get broad-based buy-in for change.

Here’s hoping you’ll join us and bring your pressing buy-in challenges so the power of the whole group can help you solve them.

Materials:


The Achieving Business Buy-in for Agile slides presented in the workshop

The 12 Common Agile Buy-in Challenges explored during the workshop

The Agile Buy-in Canvas tool used to approach buy-in challenges.

The Agile Objection Cheat Sheet – NB: Please note this is intended to give you ideas for how to respond to objections in your own words. I recommend you do not use these verbatim, they are deliberately concise and challenging.

Hope this is of interest and all feedback is welcome.

Thanks,

Posted in Engagement, Management, People, Trust.

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