Saturday, May 4, 2013

A thread to real Agile

"Manage well”.. I am sure there is no on here who have not received this wish/advice. Mange well in exams, games, play, projects, ‘spouse’ etc.. did we manage well ?? or why could we manage well.. was there any secrete sauce to ‘Manage well’ ?

So what is managing well means for you??

Here are my take on this generous wish / desire ‘Manage well’..

More than a wish for us it is a desire to manage well.., because we equate this to Success, some successful satisfaction ( I will write something about Successful satisfaction later)

So, coming back to ‘Manage well’, we need this when we are in a situation, like exam, project, job, marriage, games etc… and in every situation what are we going to ‘Manage’, nothing but ‘Variables’

So when we are in a situation,

1. Certain variability we know

2. Certain we do not know

3. Certain variable we know that we don’t know about it

4. There are many variable we don’t know that we don’t know

Now let us reflect situations we really managed well and we were successful, the reason is we are in complete cognizant about 1 & 2. Why in some situation we are less successful, because it is more of 3 & 4..

Let us take a situation, Indian cricket team visiting Australia, they are going for their first test match-- every one wishes Indian team to ‘Manage well’ ( this is just an hypothetical example )

What variability Indian cricket team know – bouncy pitches, super-fast bowlers, huge ground , less ground support

What variability they do not know - which players are in great form, how much grass they leave, how many pace bowlers they pick, winning a toss what Clark is going to do..

What variable they know that they do not know - how much runs Australia will score in first innings, how lenient Umpire is about LBW etc.

What variable they don’t know that don’t know - how to run between wicket L, how to apply and spend time in crease ..

So, how Indian team can be victorious in the first test? I leave it your imagination !!!

So from a personal front, when you are in a situation try do a mapping of the critical variables.. the more you are in 1 & 2 zone.. you are in Control ( again I will write more about Control later). We are at best when we feel, we are in control of the variables.. so what you do when you are in not in control ??

So IT business perspective,

In the first phase of IT revolution, we were trying to automate certain business process using computer programs / packages. Where IT folks were clear about what business problem ( variable) they are trying to automate and what is its solution (variable). Only very few programming language and package existed. No focus on efficiency and effectiveness of automation. Automation itself was great USP..

In the second phase of IT revolution, business problem remain known, solutions were challenging, more focus on performance, usability, security. Many solution alternates, cost implications and maintains issues ( all of these are variable ). IT group started losing control, started implementing ‘process’ frameworks / standards etc… , got a feeling they are back in control, do they ??

According to me we are in third phase of IT revolution, where there is no distinction between IT & business process. Disruptive technologies like Mobility , cloud, social engineering, Internet of things drives business and its consumer behavior. So we are behind unknown problems and unknown solutions, highest of 3 & 4. We are in total loss of control J, so how do we ‘manage well’?

The situation we are in third phase, lot of variables makes us un comfortable , create fear failure… .

So here is ‘Mantra’ to regain control

· Short feedback loops, frequent learning cycles and early feedback [ this helps to un cover many 2, 3 & 4)

· Let us fail early and effectively – let us be empirical

· Better interaction on Business users and IT folks – are we building right things

This ‘Mantra’ is nothing but Agile / lean philosophy.. so, Agile gives us insight about variability’s and very cycle / sprint will uncover many 3 & 4. Thus help us to gain back the feel of control and hence ‘MANAGE WELL’ in turn to SUCCESS..

So Agile is not the end it is a means via we do manage well…

Will connect with you folks on my random & crazy thoughts

So, manage well…


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