With the rapidly changing and complex business environments there is a need for companies to instantly adapt to these changes in order to maintain an edge in the market. Many organizations have thus started pursuing Agile transformations as Agile methods promise flexibility towards change and fosters growth. But these Agile transformations are not easy and need full commitment on the part of the people undergoing the transformations.
Agility cannot be imposed or forced upon. Gone are the days when innovation and decision-making power rested in the hands of the upper management. In today’s world change can only take place if people are given the right kind of motivation and empowerment. This is where the role of an Agile leader comes into the picture.
The Role of an Agile Leader
An Agile leader not only fosters an Agile way of working but also helps in creating an environment where teams can function effectively and deliver their best work. Agile leader focuses on both the professional and personal needs of others, helps in any impediments that the team is not able to resolve and involves people in the decision-making process where necessary. All these activities of an Agile leader promote innovation, build trust, and create a sense of belongingness within the organization.
An Agile leader is well aware of the Agile manifesto and understands how to implement it effectively throughout the organization. He/she plays a major role in the successful Agile transformation of an organization by establishing high-performing teams, building a productive environment by motivating people to deliver their best work, coaching the organization about Agile values and principles, and facilitating continuous change which fosters innovation and creativity.
Nowadays Agile is being adopted and implemented widely due to its associated benefits such as self-organizing teams, increased customer satisfaction through early and continuous delivery, accommodating changes according to the business environment and regular self-inspection to become more productive. But these adoptions often fail because of the organization’s inability to comprehend the actual need of having them in the first place. One of the major roles of an Agile leader is to analyze which departments of an organization will reap the most benefit of implementing Agile and to set a clear goal of what is to be achieved through the help of this Agile transformation.
What Makes a Quality Agile Leader?
Quality Agile leaders are the ones who inspire change, welcome different ideas, and have a passion for learning and developing people to the best of their ability. A quality Agile leader promotes the methods of servant leadership. He/she empowers the team to succeed, scrutinizes how the team’s strength can be used to the best advantage rather than focusing on their weakness. He/she puts the needs of the employees first and empowers talent development within the team in order to deliver more value both personally and professionally.
It is a proven fact that when the efforts of the employees are acknowledged, they feel a sense of belongingness within the organization which makes them more motivated and they welcome change with open arms. A quality Agile leader thus puts in all his/her efforts in creating such an environment where employees feel important and heard, he/she compliments even the efforts that did not yield the desired results and educates the team about them as a learning.
A quality Agile leader has many such competencies that differentiate him/her from a general Agile leader. Interested in learning more? Download our Agile Leadership Competency Framework that strives to articulate the expected behavioral patterns that are required to be a successful Agile leader. It comprises of specific definitions and the exact behavioral indicators which provide a standard to identify, develop and improve the Agile Leaders’ competencies for successful performance and to holistically develop their Agility.