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The Focused, Fast & Flexible Manifesto

The Focused, Fast & Flexible Manifesto

In an increasingly VUCA World (Volatility, Uncertainty, Complexity, Ambiguity) , an Agility Advantage lives at the intersection of 3 domains:

  • LEAN/Lean Startup/Scrum/AGILE (Agile Software Development & Agile Project Management) – understanding the principles of a more iterative, experimental, learning approach to doing complex things (applied at the level of the enterprise, not just at the level of project management/software development) essential for enterprise-agility.
  • Design Thinking – understanding the principles of design and integrative-thinking, essential to engage the whole-brain, whole-person, whole-team and whole-organization in the agility challenge
  • Systems Thinking – understanding the whole-system challenge of all the moving parts essential for enterprise-agility.

Insights at the intersection of these domains allow us to become simultaneously Focused, Fast & Flexible

  • Focused:  focused on an operating system designed for success in a VUCA world
  • Fast:  with fast, iterative, agile processes and approaches
  • Flexible: with in built flexibility of mindsets, skillsets and toolsets

Its about simultaneously architecting shifts in beliefs, behaviors and results, with leadership agility, team agility and organizational agility, like solving a Rubik’s cube in 3 dimensions simultaneously:  The Math of VUCA.

11581012_ml - resizedIs it any wonder that we experience increasing VUCA when the math of our business variables mushrooms so quickly beyond our comprehension?  Yet, from any starting position, by recognizing the patterns and making a few right moves, complexity reduces rapidly and you can confidently solve the puzzle of VUCA and Agility. Or not and you can stay lost in complexity and be a busy fool for a very long time!

The Focused, Fast and Flexible Manifesto helps mid market companies and corporations make the right moves.  Eric Ries of Lean Startup comments

It’s not enough to simply “get” the startup mentality. Executives who want to use lean startup principles to compete in today’s fast-paced economy must do the hard work needed to transform their companies.

People put up posters and tell everyone to `think like Facebook,’ but unless we have a deep integration into the core systems of the company, those efforts really don’t deliver.

Companies that want to take this seriously must be prepared to do the work, to answer the right questions: If you want people to think innovatively, how does that how affect how employees reviewed, compensated and promoted? How does it affect budgeting and accounting?

People who give simplistic answer to those types of questions are in real trouble, because companies that we may consider “obsolete” are actually really well designed and have a very vigorous immune system. They are operated by smart people who have a natural tendency to defend what they know against the unknown. That’s a very healthy, normal response — because for every good idea, most managers are inundated with a hundred bad ones.

So if you want to do an organ transplant and make major changes in the way the host organism is designed, you really have to know what you’re doing. You have to have your surgical procedure and antiseptic ready to go.

Making the Right Moves

  • Focused:  focused on an operating system designed for success in a VUCA world
  • Fast:  with fast, iterative, agile processes and approaches
  • Flexible: with in built flexibility of mindsets, skillsets and toolsets

For 15 years my colleagues and I at Agility Consulting & Training have been helping mid-market corporations, companies and enterprises of all descriptions go on that transformation journey to agile.  See a partial client list, case-studies and testimonials.     The pivot requires a rubric of leadership-agility, team-agility and organizational-agility with associated training, facilitation, mentoring, coaching and assessments.  All architected with an agile approach into a transformation journey which is prone to success not failure.

About Mike Richardson

Agility-Facilitator/Mentor/Coach; Agility-Author/Speaker; Agility-Board-Member/Chairman. All-round Agility Activist in everything I do, every day, everywhere, in every way. Provocative, Profound, Practical. At Eye-Level. With Love/Hate!

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