Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Adoption Or Transformation?

Recently, on one of the Scrum forums, Michael Wollin asked a question:

If you were to make one slide for the C-suite to explain why we use the term agile transformation [instead of agile adoption] what would it be?
Tobias Mayer responded to the challenge on his LinkedIn blog with the following slide.

A transformation is about movement, transition from a state of dissatisfaction to one of satisfaction—in most businesses, from a culture of fear, sadness, distraction and struggle to one of courage, kindness, engagement and effectiveness.

This is very different to adoption, which is essentially the adding of processes or practices to our existing way of doing things. I see this happening all the time when companies try to adapt Scrum. Just rename the Project Manager to Scrum Master, make a power user the Product Owner but without any empowerment, setup a daily status meeting and call it Daily Scrum, the project (yes, not product) has a fixed scope, deadline and budget, and of they go: "we are agile now".

The difference is about intent. Adoption is safe, but burdensome. Transformation is risky, yet creates new opportunity. Adoption holds on, transformation lets go. It lets you travel the unknown path.

When you do what you alwyays did, you will get what you always got.

Posted on Tuesday, November 24, 2015 by Henrico Dolfing