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Your greatest challenge is:

Way of working 

The key challenges when building winning teams are:


Start with a winning culture

It seems like your people are struggling with how they should do their work. It’s not that they don’t understand their craft (they are most likely very good) and it’s not that they don’t want to (they are probably very committed). It’s all due to the way-of-working.

It is very easy to lose yourself in the way-of-working. It’s full of buzzwords, some better than others. Be careful when looking for guidance from so-called ‘coaches’ or consultants, as they aren’t familiar with your context. They somehow think all companies are similar to FAANG organisations, which is NOT the case. We prefer to keep things simple.

Quick(est) fix
Start small; pick one (senior) team with relatively high AQ. Then, based on the Stacey Matrix, determine their context.

The vertical axis represents Requirements. It measures the level of unity within a team or organisation; how certain we are about what they want to achieve. If they are in agreement, the value is low, if not, then the value is high.

The horizontal axis represents Technology: this indicates how much confidence there is in their ability, and how they should approach it. The more certain you are that a target can be achieved, the further left you are in the model. If you have no idea how or if you can do it, then you fall to the right.

Now the team has determined their context, they can easily figure out what their way-of-working should be. It’s important that they choose their way of working. And remember: sometimes the ‘old’ way of fixing things (like the Waterfall method) is just the best way. Not everything has to be, or should be agile. When they feel empowered to solve the challenge, they will deliver better results.

PS: don’t worry about ‘Chaotic’, this generally never happens, as long as you look at the challenge objectively.

..Fixing the root cause
Once you have figured out how this works on one team, it’s time to scale it to the others. Repeat the process with other teams, and make sure they keep communicating with each other.

WARNING!! Do not fall in the trap of implementing huge organisational frameworks (like SAFe). This is the complete opposite of what you are trying to achieve here. By adding buzzwords like Scrum, Kanban, XP, Lean Startup, Lean UX, Continuous Delivery, and DevOps to the framework, you make it sound appealing. However, we are yet to come across a team/organisation that has found this way-of-working beneficial. Why? I hear you ask: SAFe is about command & control. It is therefore essential you give power to the teams. Let them figure out what they need to solve the challenge.

If you have any questions don’t hesitate to get in touch.

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