Breaking patterns 2 enable change: R3aligning forces

In Agile, Agile Coaching, Case of study, Change, Inspiring, Leadership by chuzzeteLeave a Comment

Breaking patterns 2 enable change: R3aligning forces

In my previous article Breaking patterns 2 enable change: Wall Estimating Planning, I exposed what we have done to ensure a common understanding across the board, regarding the initiatives wished to be delivered in 2017.

In today’s article, I’ll focus on what was done to get everyone aligned with department goals, the activities organized and my impressions about where are we, 3 months after the change was introduced.

By the way, I’ll keep using the same case of study to showcase what we have put into practice, to enable change to happen.

R3aligning Forces

Here are the 9 steps that we’ve followed, in order to get the teams reorganized and deliver solutions faster.

  1. Retrospective about previous year (Sailboat exercise)
  2. What do we want to improve?
  3. Propose solutions to help us improve during 2017
  4. Build Team re-organization proposals.
  5. Vote Team re-organization proposals.
  6. Build ideas of implementation.
  7. Pitch Ideas of Implementation.
  8. Vote Ideas of Implementation.
  9. Let’s try it

Expected Outcome: The main purpose of all those activities, was to motivate people to collaborate, break communication silos and get things done faster.

It Smells like fear

I had the privilege to facilitate all the activities that we’d done to help teams get r3aligned, but the most prominent common factor that I’d noticed was fear.

But fear to what?

  • Feeling forced to collaborate?

  • Being confronted to new ideas or mindset?

  • Feeling vulnerable?

  • Sensation that you won't fit in?

After a round of questions, and being around through curiosity, I confirmed that uncertainty was leading people’s pace towards change, but what I’d found even more passioning was the fact that everyone was willing to give it a try to the new way of doing things that emerged. Isn’t that contradictory?

Well, when facing high levels of uncertainty human beings are exposed to a lot of stress which could lead us to start questioning our world. Frightening isn’t?

Collaborating Effectively

The one thing that I’ve learned from being a Venezuelan is that under a lot of uncertainty, something that often helps navigate through my fears is:

  • Try to understand what I’m feeling.
  • Accept that there are things in life that I can’t change and identify those that I can do something.
  • Ask myself if it’s OK to stay or leave. Is there anything to learn from these situation?
  • Look around to empathize and connect with others.
  •  Keep it positive
  • Believe that I’m going to prevail not matter what.
  • Have fun and learn!

Has it worked?

So far, the exercise has helped the development teams and the system team to improve their collaboration. In a recent anonymous survey, we ask for feedback to know team members perception about the following question: Do you think that we have improved in Q1? here some results:

63% said considered that we improved on Team Interdependencies. 62% said that we improved in Lack of Alignment. Those specific themes were the target of the R3aligning forces experiment. But is that enough?

Well, we are going to ask them. Tomorrow we will go over the results of the survey together and then we will ask them to decide what they want to do:
– Continue improving the r3aligning forces experiment?
– Start experimenting over a another theme?
– Do both

I’ll let you know how it goes in my next article.

In the mean time have fun, be good with yourself and try to help others collaborate effectively.

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