4 agile team best practices to follow in the enterprise

“4 agile team best practices to follow in the enterprise” on TechTarget, May 19, 2020.

Adapt leadership styles

Agile teams are cross-functional and matrixed, so the traditional command-and-control style of management just won’t work.

Alan Zucker headshot“Managers tell people what to do and how to do it. This kills creativity and innovation,” said Alan Zucker, founding principal at Project Management Essentials, which provides training and advisory services in project management, Agile transformation, and leadership. “For a team to become agile, the manager needs to shift from their traditional rule to being a servant leader. Like a good teacher who leads the student to an answer, an agile manager helps the team explore options, make decisions and continuously improve.”

Start small and grow

Two common mistakes companies make when attempting to become more agile is to attempt a “big bang” approach in which teams are working in a Waterfall fashion one day and agile the next.

“Traditional organizations spend years becoming agile. As they progress, they learn another important principle: Agile is not a destination but a journey,” Zucker said. “Vibrant Agile organizations are continually adapting the way they work.”

Adaptation can be seen in the progression of software teams as they mature from Agile to DevOps to CI/CD. However, a challenge in expanding Agile software development is that what works for one team may not work for others.

Today, the concept of agile teams is expanding beyond software development to the business at large. In fact, DevOps is the basis for an entire array of “Ops” functions including BizOps, MarketingOps, AIOps, MLOps and DataOps, to name a few.