Agile leadership – The ability to balance more than one challenge and sometimes contradictory demands. No questions why agile leadership is so effective, to build high performing teams, and drive consistent results. Transformation starts with agile leadership. Agile leaders are unmatched with their unique adaptability! They balance competing demands, coordinate action across levels, and respond to constantly changing situations.
Agile leadership is more important today than ever – but would you like to change the whole company? It is also easier: With three agile leadership techniques that any team can easily try out.
The reason why this is important and the idea behind it:
Is there always a problem in the same places, processes stalling, collaboration not running smoothly? A regular retrospective can change that. The goal is to improve cooperation. This is how a retrospective works: For a retrospective, teams should gather every two to four weeks and discuss how the collaboration works. The meeting runs in five phases:
- Arrive: The team comes together, talks about the goals of the meeting.
- Collecting data: what has happened in the past few weeks? What worked, what didn’t? What does the team want to do better in the future? Have there been any problems in the organization or processes that you should talk about?
- Finding out: Why did we notice the topics we just talked about? What are the possible causes of problems?
- Developing solutions: The employees think about what they want to change in the collaboration and determine who does what.
- Conclusion: Each employee briefly tells how they felt about the meeting.
In the next retrospective, the team should check whether the changes made sense or whether you have to work on them again.
Things You Should Be Aware Of
A retrospective should not only take place when something goes wrong – but regularly to avoid major problems. It is important to plan the meetings thoroughly and to moderate them well. Because it is often about personal issues, which can lead to disputes between employees.
For the technology to work, it is essential that there is an open atmosphere: Employees must feel that they can address problems and express dissatisfaction. And don’t be afraid of getting into trouble right away if they complain about something. Otherwise, they are not ready to talk.
That is why retrospectives are worthwhile: A retrospective is particularly easy to implement – and technology can improve collaboration enormously: employees address problems directly instead of dragging them around for weeks or months and building up frustration. At a retrospective, teams can also celebrate shared success.
DAILY STAND-UP MEETING
Importance and the idea behind it:
What do my colleagues do all day long? What is the new employee currently working on – and can he need support? The aim of stand-up meetings is to clarify exactly such questions.
This is how a daily stand-up meeting works: The whole team gathers at a certain time each day – standing, as the name of the technology reveals. This works both on-site in the office and virtually via video conference. The meeting usually takes place in the morning. Everyone says what they are working on, whether something is preventing them from working or if they need help, The meeting should last 10 to 15 minutes.
The advantage of standing: The meetings are shorter because everyone wants to sit back quickly. In addition, team members speak to each other differently: You can’t sit back in your chair, that changes a lot – people get more involved, for example.
Things You Should Be Aware Of
If the rules are unclear, the daily standing meeting can quickly become the least popular date of the day. To prevent this, entrepreneurs should think carefully about how to organize the meeting. It is deadly for meetings if it is unclear what the goal is, who moderates what you want to talk about.
In the beginning, The goal of the meeting should be clearly communicated – that is to bring everyone on the same page and, if necessary, to uncover where work has stalled. Long-winded stories about conferences or appointments are not part of the stand-up. If these framework conditions are clear from the outset, it will be easier for everyone to interrupt colleagues and tell them that their statements do not fit into this meeting.
In order to relax the mood and create a positive atmosphere, entrepreneurs can also combine the stand-up with other rituals: I’ve heard of teams singing, meditating, or playing a little game in the morning. That connects the employees. But it always depends on what they want and what feels good for them. For example, if half of them find it strange to meditate, this ritual is not the right one.
That is why daily stand-up meetings are worthwhile: A daily stand-up is always good if you feel that the team should communicate more. If you want to create more transparency and get away from the fact that employees keep ideas or knowledge to themselves. The morning exchange also sets the team up for the day. Everyone knows what their colleagues are working on, the employees can discuss and distribute new tasks in the group. If newcomers join the team, the morning ritual will quickly tell them who is responsible for what and what their colleagues are working on.
This method is so simple that every team can try it out directly. I advise to test the stand-up for two weeks, for example, and then to see whether it will advance the team or not.
Importance of Kanban boards and the idea behind it:
Similar to stand-up meetings, Kanban boards also help to keep an overview: Which tasks are pending? Who is working on what, how far is he, what problems are there? Employees keep track of their progress on a blackboard or in a digital tool that remote teams can access from anywhere.
This is how a Kanban board works: A Kanban board consists of three or more columns: In the first column (to-dos), employees enter tasks that must be completed next. In the second column (Doing) you write what you are currently working on. And in the third column (Done) there is space for projects or tasks that you have recently completed.
If you want to go one step further, you can add a few columns to the Kanban board. For example, around the “backlog”, a column for tasks that are pending at some point. Or “Waiting for” for tasks that employees cannot yet complete because they are waiting for feedback from colleagues or information from customers or business partners.
If employees work in different locations, programs such as Trello are available. When everyone comes to the company, the Kanban board can be a whiteboard or a surface on the wall that employees stick to with Post-its.
Things You Should Be Aware Of
The biggest challenge with Kanban boards is to maintain them – i.e. to postpone their tasks and enter new to-dos. I recommend that employees get used to looking at the board at least once a day and working on their own tasks. It can help to combine the Kanban board with the daily stand-up: The daily standing meeting then takes place in front of the (digital) Kanban board, the team sees the current status of the tasks and gets used to it Technology to work.
That is why Kanban boards are worthwhile: With a Kanban board, tasks are not forgotten. Everyone can see for themselves what they have achieved and how much they can do. It also helps not to take over as a team, but to finish tasks before you start new ones.