Developing a culture of agile working starts with establishing four agile core competencies: Team, Technical, Business, and Leadership. All these are necessary for your organization to become more competitive and efficient. However, identifying the right core competencies is not easy. Here are a few important principles that will help you develop these capabilities. Using the right core competencies will help you build a culture of agility in your organization. These principles are based on an Agile framework and can be applied by anyone, regardless of experience or the type of organization you work in.
Team and technical agility
Generally, organizations align for functional excellence. However, value delivery transcends functional silos. Agile teams are cross-functional, having all the skills and people necessary to deliver value, eliminating delays and handoffs. Team members are also committed to working on the same team full-time, reducing overhead and multiplexing. In addition, Agile teams deliver value directly to customers. However, complex subsystems such as software and hardware require deep specialty skills not easily acquired by team members.
In an increasingly fast-changing world, business agility is essential to survival. Consumers have become more informed and demanding, while employees demand more clarity, empowerment, and meaning in their work. Companies that embrace business agility are better positioned to meet these demands, but implementing agility requires a thorough understanding of the agile core competencies. Here are some critical areas in which companies should focus their agile efforts. Let’s take a closer look at each of these domains and how they can be achieved.
In an agile business, leaders do not advance in steps; they develop enhanced layers of capacity while retaining the skills and knowledge of earlier levels. As a result, leaders have different levels of leadership agility, and developing these competencies doesn’t follow an organizational chart. Moreover, promotions do not necessarily equate to leadership development, which can lead to stress and downgrading behaviors. Therefore, if you’d like to be an agile leader, you must understand how agile business works.
The first principle of agile management is that it puts people at the center of the process. The Manifesto stresses authentic human interactions, collaboration, and the delivery of a working solution. This practice can benefit many business functions, including product development and marketing. Agile teams are often more responsive and productive than non-agile teams. A well-defined process can help you overcome the challenges that come with a lack of team stability.
Focus on safety
SAFe focuses on business outcomes and working systems. The process ensures that teams deliver substantial amounts of solution value, despite not everything going as planned. SAFe emphasizes openness, integrity, and trust, three key elements needed to build high-performing teams. The TTA Core Competency Assessment asks questions about team structure, operations, and cross-functional skills. It also asks about technical practices, such as peer review and technical debt.