Thursday, November 22, 2012

How do I do #Stoos in my company?

Monday, Steve Denning and I held our Monthly Mashup webinar dedicated to the question, "What is Stoos?" If you haven't followed the linkedin discussion, I urge you to check it out! In any case, one of our participants, Gary from Chicago asked:
I am in the process of forming a new company which will operate in a niche within the chemicals industry.   I am not looking to change my organization, I am looking to start my organization using Stoos, Agile and Radical Management from the outset.  It would be helpful to know who within the global Stoos network might be available to consult regarding my startup keeping my developing organization on the path of being customer focused with empowered employees.
Great question! A couple of answers came back:
  • Several of the panelists are in that business (surprise!). For example, Steve & I teach a course on Radical Management. I also teach Scrum and lead Temenos visioning retreats to enable your your leadership team to create a compelling shared vision. In my own entrepreneurial work, I have gotten quite excited about the Lean Startup approach and am happy to share my excitement! 
  • Ask on the Stoos linkedin group or in the nearest Stoos Satellite - In your case, I would suggest starting a Stoos satellite; AFAIK the Denver Satellite is most active in the USA.
  • A number of the compatible frameworks have active user communities, coaches and trainers: Scrum, Kanban and Lean Startup come to mind, and these could be good places to start.
On reflecting, I'd also like to encourage you to take your destiny in to your own hands! The Agile Manifesto shows you how!

Apply the Agile Manifesto to your Company or Context

Remember the Agile Manifesto? "We are uncovering better ways of developing software..." What follows are 4 value statements and 12 principles that are surprisingly universal. Joe Justice, CEO of WIKISPEED, suggests adapting the Agile Manifesto to your situation and using the values and principles to guide your actions.

How can you apply the Agile Manifesto to your situation? Replace "develop software" with whatever you do or your company does. If you are an interior designer, you might say "We are uncovering better ways of designing homes..."

Now, go a step further! Look at your work from the perspective of the beneficiaries of your work. In the case of an interior designer: We are uncovering better ways to create living spaces for individuals and families. Now you have your own personal "Agile Manifesto!"

Once you have your own personal manifesto, you can go through the values and principles and ask yourself, how does this apply to my quest for better ways of working or creating value for my constituents? For each value and principle, identify one or two things that you can start doing differently tomorrow to apply that principle. Voilà! You're doing Stoos!

Maybe one or two of the principles don't apply to you, and that's OK. Maybe there is another principle that you have discovered, which for some reason is not in the software developer's Agile Manifesto. Is it compatible with the four values? Then that principle is OK too! You are creating your own manifesto!

Good luck! And I would love to hear back from people who go through this exercise and apply the results to their business!