More and more often we hear about "agile management" and how this approach can bring benefits to the business. Its objective is indeed to respond effectively to market changes and customer needs. The evolutionary driver for businesses is digital transformation. And the key to providing adequate answers is the involvement of its employees. Necessary to this goal is the use of an agile business model. Its objective is indeed to respond effectively to market changes and customer needs.
So, what is Agile Management?
The “agile methodology” or “agile manifesto” was born as a philosophy in the development of software in the early 2000s, which then extended to other fields and contrasts with the classic "waterfall" model, which presupposes a well-defined sequence of actions to be carried out before of the realization of a finished product. The agile model instead uses lighter, adaptive and predictive planning techniques, and greater and flexibility. Encourage teamwork, taking responsibility among all members of a workgroup and organizing each one of them. They valued individuals and interactions over processes and tools, working software over comprehensive documentation, customer collaboration over contract negotiation and responding to change over following a plan.
The agile manifesto is based on four main features:
- Individuals and interactions rather than processes and tools.
- The working software more than exhaustive documentation.
- Collaboration with the customer rather than contract negotiation.
- Respond to change rather than follow a set plan.
With this in mind, the agile methodology aims to achieve full customer satisfaction through the collaboration of a committed team. A team focused on achieving results quickly, with continuous feedback and interaction, where everyone can best express their abilities. With this approach, it is also possible to lower the risk and keep costs down.
Advantages of Agile Management
Valuing one's own employees, involving them and making them express their potential, is what helps to create a peaceful work environment and achieve greater results. But agile management also has other benefits. There is greater attention to the result, given that the user is involved and the iterative approach certainly accelerates development. Furthermore, productivity increases as well as quality, since tests are a fundamental part of this development.
In order to implement agile management, a strong involvement of the responsibility figures and a change of mentality are necessary to recognize when it is time to delegate. We must ensure that we create an environment that is truly collaborative. Furthermore, it is necessary to recognize also the potential risks: end-users could give continuous suggestions, putting in danger the project that is facing. Documentation could be left behind and too frequent meetings would jeopardize progress because they take time otherwise used to get the job done.
Although it may present drawbacks, agile management undoubtedly helps to create a high-quality product through iterations and, through the process of constant feedback and quick responses, success is achieved. With all the reasons that agile is sensible now, it is likely here to stay—at least for the foreseeable future—so it’s wise to embrace it and learn from all that it has to offer.