Develop business agility by building stronger teams

Business Agility

We’re living through a digital technology evolution — the pace and scale of which is constantly accelerating.

The lines between IT, the business, and customers are disappearing. There is ongoing disruption to your people and business model. Competition to your products and services and for your best people is on the rise. None of this is going to slow or disappear anytime soon.

Now, let’s take a look at where business agility fits within this new world.

Business agility addresses the simple things

Now, more than ever, individuals, teams and organisations need to be nimble, resilient, focused, lean and adaptive; in short, they need business agility.

Imagine if you worked in an organisation where the capabilities, behaviours and culture required to develop and sustain business agility (including traits such as constantly learning and improving) were simply a part of your day-to-day business practices.

Consider:

  • What if every meeting started with a 2-minute mindfulness exercise to ensure participants were present and single-minded about the task at hand and had a sharpened focus on appropriate participation and required outcomes?
  • What if every meeting concluded with a 5-minute retrospective on the behaviours and performance of those in the meeting against agreed standards?
  • What if everyone embraced openness and honesty, having courageous conversations, speaking their truths, challenging decisions, confronting inappropriate behaviour or addressing performance in a professional, respectful healthy and focused manner?
  • What if team members self-selected actions and responsibilities based on strengths and capacities?

These are simple, intuitively logical things that are rarely applied consistently or well.

There is ample scientific data, research and case study evidence proving that this approach delivers significant business and personal value.

Need further proof?

Dan Pink, the author of “Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us”, looks at 40-50 years of research in behavioural science and tells us motivation and performance are boosted when you have a culture of autonomy, mastery and purpose. People need and want these conditions to thrive; increasingly, people will look for and move to organisations that provide this type of environment.

Visionary thinker Simon Sinek, the author of “Start with Why,” says all successful leaders and organisations in the world operate from their purpose for existing, outwards. The how and what they do come after their sense of purpose.

Neuroscience research also supports this thinking, citing evidence of stronger performance, productivity and profitability where people and teams have developed a range of traits and practices including mindfulness, growth mind-sets, strength based management and self-managed teams, to name a few.

How can you create real change?

Behavioural and cultural change is not easy or quick, but it is possible. It requires commitment, leadership, supporting structural mechanisms, persistence, and the ability to embrace innovation and learn from mistakes and courage. You need to start small and tackle it both top-down and bottom-up.

We start with lean change training and team-forming workshops, introducing lean change tools and techniques, and the key attributes and structures needed for building business agility. This is an interactive, engaging, collaborative experience that outlines purpose, behaviours and where you want to get to as a team.

Participants come away from this with a set of tools for making this real, including a passion to play canvas (detailing the teams’ behavioural standards and agreed-upon commitments to the process), an implementation plan and other practical stuff to start you on your journey. Teams then use these techniques and tools to experiment with their individual and collective behaviours to embed these attributes within their team. All experiments are measured to ensure that the aim of constantly seeking incremental improvements to effectiveness, efficiency and culture can be realised and measured.

Teaching you how to fish

We “teach you how to fish” so you can replicate and build sustainable capability across your organisation. This includes developing a baseline of your team’s maturity against our business agility model and implementing relevant KPIs and reporting metrics so you can measure the benefits and ROI from your investment. This is coupled with coaching and a plan to enable you to efficiently scale this approach across your organisation until you can fish on your own!

Organisations that invest in building business agility see improved transparency, innovation and collaboration. In addition, they experience better performance and decision making, and less stressed, more engaged and inspired employees.

Business agility drives sustainable improvement, develops an enjoyable high-performance culture, and is key to retaining talent and attracting it to your organisation. All of this results in greater productivity and profitability so you can compete in a digitally disrupted world.


Paul JenkinsonPaul Jenkinson is transformation lead at DXC Consulting. Since joining the team in 2006 he has delivered business transformation, change management and project management expertise to clients including the Victorian Department of Justice, ANZ Bank, Minerals and Metals Group and Fosters. He is accredited to deliver Lean Change training.

 

RELATED LINKS

Lean Change: A unique approach to managing change at speed

5 habits for digital leaders to adopt in 2017

The new face of enterprise collaboration

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