AgileSHIFT – no, it’s not another Agile method

Three hands of two colleagues holding pens and tablet while working at desk covered with charts displaying organization data

You may have heard about our latest guidance AgileSHIFT and wondered, what makes it different from other Agile products. After all, there are a lot of methods, methodologies and approaches that carry the name ‘Agile’, so why do we need another one?

Well, the thing is, AgileSHIFT is not another ‘Agile method’.

Before clarifying what AgileSHIFT is, first a word about Agile methods. Put very simply, they are a combination of practices and techniques used in the development of products and services (especially, but not exclusively software development, where they have their ‘roots’). All these methods are based on a set of principles and values that are documented in something called the ‘Agile Manifesto’.

Agile methods have proved very popular, as evidenced by the variety of different approaches available, and many development and project delivery teams are benefiting from becoming ‘Agile’. Yet there is a potential problem. The creation of isolated delivery teams using Agile methods can frequently lead to major issues if it is not supported and embraced by the rest of the organization.

Many organizational functions, who have their own, well-established ways of working, may not understand why those delivery teams are using Agile methods, or how to work with them. As a result, the potential benefits fail to be achieved.

This is the issue we addressed with AgileSHIFT. It is not “another Agile method”, because it is not intended to be another option for development and delivery teams only. Instead, any function that needs to work in a more agile way benefits from AgileSHIFT – and this includes marketing, finance or HR.

Another way of expressing the ideas behind AgileSHIFT is that this is about enabling an organization to move and adapt quickly in response to shifting customer and market needs; and this requires a shift in the mindset of everyone involved.

So no, AgileSHIFT is not another Agile method – it’s much more than that. It is seeking to help the entire organization develop an agility in order to survive and thrive in today’s volatile world.

See our AgileSHIFT section for more information and read our white paper Enterprise Agility and AgilSHIFT.

Read more AXELOS Blog Posts by John Edmonds

How can I be agile without going Agile?

A changing context – the reasons behind AgileSHIFT

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17 Feb 2019 David
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Sounds like an excellent approach. As someone who has worked in the area of innovation for many years I see the same challenges. Innovation capabilities are implemented at the delivery level but there is no wider organisational initiative to create a culture of innovation or inform leadership. There is a lot of overlap here with Agile.
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