A Three-Track Strategy for Enterprise Adoption

In my blog entry of a few days ago, (Ideal Training for Enterprise Agility?), I noted that Pete Behrens (www.trailridgeconsulting.com) and I were collaborating on a leveraged enterprise rollout model, that is, a model for education and consulting that could help a larger enterprise (hundreds to thousands of developers) start to achieve the benefits of agility in a year or less without spending themselves blind with teams and teams of consultants in the process.

Since that time, Pete and I have further documented more of our thinking, and Pete took the next stab in his recent blog post: An Ideal Coaching Strategy for Rapid Enterprise-Scale Agility? While the body of this article is devoted primarily to Pete’s description of a leveraged “mentor-trains-the-internal-coaches” strategy, we also noted that we see three distinct and significant tracks necessary for rapid and successful adoption and rollout. These are (portions quoted with permission):

“First, and foremost, the creation of an internal agile enterprise transition team drives the enterprise vision for the agile transition and also facilitates its implementation. Implemented properly, it re-orients the transition from a top-down mandate to a middle-out and bottom-up buy-in of the impending change.

Secondly, shared-learning achieved through outside training is a critical success factor in an enterprise-scale transition. This addresses the basic need for understanding, mastery, consistency, and coordination of the many new techniques across the multiple interdependent teams that are necessary to deliver large-scale business solutions in a substantially agile manner.

Last, but not least, is the need for experienced agile mentoring and guidance. While training is necessary for an enterprise consistency and understanding of agility, it is not sufficient. Training is often separated from the reality of the environment and project issues teams face. Moreover, fully leveraging an ideal training scenario is not always practical and gaps in understanding as well as practice will certainly remain.”

Taken together, the tracks provide “wide and deep” coverage for the many changes inherent in enterprise-scale adoption:

  • Wide in that all practitioners and stakeholders receive some amount of agility training (see training post)
  • Deep in that all development teams and role-based practitioners on those teams receive both in depth, role-based training (see training post) as well as consulting and mentoring support (see consulting post)

For more on this thinking, please read Pete’s deeper discussion on each of these topics in the post: An Ideal Coaching Strategy for Rapid Enterprise-Scale Agility?

Also, if I get a chance in the next couple of days, I hope to elaborate more on some of the leverage coaching ideas that are expressed there too.


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