Ins and Outs of Agile Mindset

There are meetings, and there are agile meetings. 

This pandemic disruption has brought meeting life to a whole new level and has given it a new definition. However, the agile mindset is more than just about meetings. This mindset can prove practical and beneficial in the work-life of its members.

Statistics on these virtual get-togethers are startling:

  1. 35% of middle managers’ time are spent in meetings 
  2. A staggering 50% of upper management time are spent in meetings
  3. At least two to five hours each day is spent by employees in meetings
  4. 34% of employees claim that they still had nothing to show despite the two to five hours each day spent in meetings 
  5. At least four hours per week are spent by employees preparing for the status update

So, how can an Agile mindset reverse these counterproductive effects?

What is an Agile mindset principle?

In a regular corporate meeting, the agenda might cover a vast range of topics. 

Meetings following the agile methodology are highly focused. It involves consistent, collaborative meetings done in a repetitive mode for continuous improvement.

Agile’s guiding principles involved working in shorter time frames, iterative, done in regular intervals with the intention to check progress, review tasks, adjust systems for improvement, and discuss roadblocks. 

The two most popular Agile principles are:

  1. Scrum
  2. Kanban

But this article will focus on Scrum. What is Scrum?

Scrum is a rugby term to describe the players’ position as they come together in a tight formation to gain possession of the ball. 

The term was first used in the 1986 paper The New New Product Development Game by Hirotaka Takeuchi and Ikujiro Nonaka. They described their new strategy on project management as a rugby approach rather than a relay race approach

Under the rugby approach, the team involves a few hand-picked, cross-functional members with all members constantly interacting from start to finish. 

This approach trains members to self-govern since the team is not governed by a Project Manager, but has a Scrum Master to mentor the team.

The daily stand-up meetings caps at 15 minutes. It is a quick check-in on what each member is working on, how it is going with them and declares any obstruction stalling them. These sprint meetings allow for the immediate resolution of issues and/or improvement of processes before much work, time and effort have been put in.

The research of Hirotaka Takeuchi and Ikujiro Nonaka revealed that exceptional performance is achieved when teams are small, self-governing, and are given objectives rather than tasks because they are accorded freedom in devising their own strategies towards achieving a shared goal.

TAKE AWAY

Meetings may not be popular, but they are fundamental in any organization. It is the forum where collaborative activities are managed. 

Your meeting experience will change when your meetings are conducted with the Agile mindset and methodology. They will be short, on point, and deliberate. You will have more time in doing rather than meeting.

If you want to learn the fine points of this methodology, let’s talk.

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