How Modern Agile Principles Helps to Maximize the Productivity of Your Functional Teams

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Development teams generally use to align their practices to agile as well as lean methodologies in order to achieve higher productivity and efficiency. However, Modern Agile is quite a new methodology for achieving excellence. The term was coined and explained by Joshua Kerievsky in the year 2016.

In this article, we will read about the 4 core Modern Agile Principles and how can functional teams utilize these principles to boost their productivity.

An Overview of Modern Agile

Agile principles, though very helpful in some aspects, were introduced in 2001. Most of these are outdated as of now, because the tech world is evolving very fast. Modern Agile could be considered as the modern manifesto with a much wider scope than its conventional counterpart.

The purpose of Modern Agile is to provide all innovation-driven organizations with a simpler, sturdier, finely-streamlined and more focused way to become agile. Its focus is on developing an awesome work culture alongside delivering worth-praising solutions/results.

To attain it all, Modern Agile Methodology has 4 guiding principles. Let’s talk about them now.

The 4 Guiding Principles of Modern Agile

Modern Agile is a generic concept that can be adopted by any organization irrespective of what they do.
From the smallest entity of the business process to the biggest outcome, everything is somehow touched while defining and following Modern Agile. Here are the 4 principles of Modern Agile, through which it is done.

Principles of Modern Agile

1. Make People Awesome

When a product or a service-based company initiates a process, it has to directly or indirectly work in a direction that satisfies its end-users/customers. In the process, it also has to take care that its employees, sellers, partners, vendors, and other involved participants are not exploited or made to suffer. Modern Agile’s first principle is about the same too.

In ‘Make People Awesome’, people refer to every single person that is connected to the organization. This principle suggests businesses carefully monitor everyone, understand their pain points, figure out their limitations and help them become (or feel) awesome.

How ‘Make People Awesome’ principle can improve your functional team’s productivity?

  • You try generating a better work culture and an inclusive workplace, improving team members’ satisfaction rate.
  • Suggestions of all members in the process are heard, so your function team takes more interest in the project.
  • Feedback of end-users and clients are taken into consideration. It helps your team carry forward the process in the right direction, reducing their troubles for the future.
  • Sellers, vendors, and marketers can collaborate back with developers/solution-creators to deliver what the market actually expects.

2. Make Safety a Prerequisite

Here, ‘safety’ doesn’t just imply cybersecurity. However, cybersecurity is surely a part of the components that are addressed through this principle.

As humans, we all feel that there is a need to stay secure in the physical as well as the virtual world. With a feeling that we are safe, we become able to achieve better results and accomplishments. So, we can consider that security is the key to unlock human potential. And hence, organizations have to take care of everyone’s safety.

For example –

  • A business that requires carrying out risky processes through its employees should ensure that standard safety measures are taken or not.
  • A software development company that collaborates with other businesses to help them digitize their processes should make sure that its clients’ data doesn’t leak out. For this, it also has to ensure that secure tools, processes, and practices at being used by its team. Ethical integrity has to be maintained and verified from time to time.

From these two examples, you must have understood what the Modern Agile principle ‘Make Safety a Prerequisite’ implies.

To summarize, this principle wants businesses and their entities to secure people, data, money, relationships, health, well-being, reputation, tools, processes, and so on.

How ‘Make Safety a Prerequisite’ principle can improve your functional team’s productivity?

  • It will keep your team members mindful and content, improving their dedication and productivity.
  • Your functional team will have to deploy secure processes in product creation or manufacturing. It will reduce their effort in handling the threats (which are the result of security holes).
  • Safe solutions or products can survive the market for longer, and fewer changes have to made, in order to keep them updated later. It will keep their minds at peace too.

Experiment & Learn Rapidly

Experience, learning, experiential learning, and learning through others’ experience indeed matters.

Experiments are important if you want to innovate. Learning is important when you want to grow faster. When your experiments don’t do well, you need to focus on learning a bit more, in order to experiment with more caution.

This Modern Agile principle is all about what we mentioned above!

To align your practices to the above-mentioned 2 principles, you definitely need best-of-breed professionals who can experiment and learn rapidly. And to keep them safe while experimenting, your deployments need to be safe. This means risk assessment has to be a part of the process too.

How ‘Experiment & Learn Rapidly’ principle can improve your functional team’s productivity?

  • Your functional team’s members can document their learning and experiments, which could serve as the knowledge base for their team members. It in the end, will save time for the whole team, preventing them from making the same mistakes again.
  • Learning reduces the time taken to complete a task. The more experienced a person is, the lesser time he or she takes to overcome a challenge. It improves the productivity of every individual in the functional team.

4. Deliver Value Continuously

Delivering values is indeed what every business wants. So, this is the fourth i.e. the last principle of Modern Agile. To align your practices with this principle, you need to take care of 3 previous principles too. See the connection:

  • If you want to make people awesome, delivering value continuously is essential. If you skip doing so, you are not making people at delivering end and the people at the recipient end ‘awesome’.
  • If you want to deliver value continuously, it has to be delivered safely. If not, what is the benefit of all the efforts put behind it? This means, Make Safety a Prerequisite has to be taken into consideration.
  • If you do not Experiment & Learn Rapidly, how will you deliver value continuously at all?

Saw?

Also, while delivering value continually, Modern Agile methodology also focuses on keeping the process as fast-paced as possible (isn’t it what awesome people do?). For this, the principle suggests working on the bits and pieces of the process in parallel. It helps businesses optimize their process and reduces wait time for each entity involved.

How ‘Deliver Value Continuously’ principle can improve your functional team’s productivity?

  • Better communication and collaboration techniques are used, in order to deliver value. This doesn’t just help your team but improves the quality of output too.
  • To deliver value, organization change management will become essential, keeping your teams, tools and processes updated.
  • Testing and feedback mechanism of your processes and products will have to be sound. It will help your functional teams deliver better solutions faster.

Conclusion

Modern Agile is a crucial set of principles that a business needs to take into consideration while trying to accomplish its goals. Organizations anyway are trying to follow most of its philosophies. It is just that when you read and follow Modern Agile, you do not – anymore – try to achieve all its objectives in a distributed manner. You focus on their connection and therefore, perform better.

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