Apr 27, 2009

Agility Happens!

Posted by Jeannette Cabanis-Brewin in Culture & Change Management | 5 Comments

... how's that for a bumper sticker? All kidding aside, my friend and colleague Karen White pinged me the other day to tell me to visit the CEO's blog on the PMI website (it's in our blogroll - check it out). As the author of the 2008 CBP book Agile Project Management, Karen was excited to see that the top echelon of PMI was beginning to "get" the transformative possibilities of agile methods. Says Karen: "IT IS HAPPENING!" - and she's not the type to play fast and loose with exclamation points. Among other things, PMI CEO Balestero quoted an Agile guru as saying that the real impact of Agile methods was:

...driving such values as respect for everyone's opinion and contribution to the project team, consistent and shared vigilance to risk, and more. He felt that it was developed not only to develop software faster and more effectively, but to provide a new culture of work, and new leadership values and principles."

This is what excited Karen, and it hits me where I live, too. After years of writing from the fringe of project management (both fringes, actually--the one that says project management is a transformational tool for organizational change; and the one that says project management helps people feel engagement in work and enjoy their worklives more fully) - it's gratifying that the inner circle of the profession can sense the important change that's coming over the discipline.

Yes, project management is about control - about restoring order to the chaos. But it's more than that; that's  why it has been able to energize and compel so many people for so long. Newbies to the profession often remark on how passionate people can get about PM. CBP research has shown that merely implementing a basic methodology serves to improve employee morale.

Where order meets agility, work becomes exciting and things start to pop. The rapid spread of agile project management is just the firestarter our economy needs.

Housekeeping note: Hello again to our subscribers; you were lost for a month or two thanks to the snafu caused by Feedburner's migration to Google. Maybe my very public hissy-fit about Google's poor management of the transition helped, but we finally did get our full subscriber list restored.

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5 Comments on Agility Happens!

Debbie Bigelow Crawford says:

Hmmm, Jeannette, I really hadn’t thought of “improving employee morale” as an ancillary benefit of project management..but in retrospect, I do agree with you that “where order meets agililty, work becomes exciting and things start to pop”.

Posted on April 28, 2009 at 9:07 am

Jeannette Cabanis-Brewin says:

It’s true! - one of the findings from the CBP’s very first Value of PM study in 2000 was that Employee Satisfaction showed a 36% improvement. When I later interviewed participants in the study to find out more, one of them told me, “Work feels less chaotic and frustrating now.”

Posted on April 28, 2009 at 9:23 am

Athresh Krishnappa says:

Hi Jeannette,
The catch phrase “where order meets agility” is very interesting. It emphasises the need to tune Process frameworks like PMBOK, CMMi and ISO to adopt Agile practices. Only when there is such a convergence can we really see a huge benefit and a revolutionary change.

Posted on May 4, 2009 at 7:27 am

Custom Building Products says:

I found your blog on google and read a few of your other posts. I just added you to my Google News Reader. Keep up the good work. Look forward to reading more from you in the future.

Posted on May 18, 2009 at 9:45 am

Mike says:

Revolutionary changes are possible in a company not only by process frameworks, but by people who believe in them and practice. People who read something and want to try it out will always fail. Please do not post comments just for the sake of it.Think before you write DO NOT COPY from BOOKS.

Posted on July 3, 2009 at 7:20 am

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