Tag Archives: Organizational Effectiveness

How HR Can Save or Destroy Agile

“Business engagement alone is a necessary but not sufficient condition for Agile to succeed”

It’s taken a while but now it’s well understood amongst seasoned Agile practitioners that Business engagement is necessary for successful Agile implementations. Just when we thought engaged Business owners were enough, we’re now realizing Business engagement alone is not sufficient. The impact of corporate shared services, especially Human Resources (HR), on Agile adoptions or transformations are often overlooked. In fact, Agile practitioners often bypass HR in their zeal to quickly change the way they work and the related people processes.

“Companies are running 21st century businesses with 20th century workplace practices & programs”

– Willis Towers Watson

It’s not just IT departments practicing Agile but 21st century businesses overall that are characterized by flatter organizations and an insatiable appetite for small ‘a’ agility. Agility that is pushing and breaking the envelope of current HR processes and tools. Agile individuals and teams are very vocal when it comes to calling out technical obstacles in their way. The same could be said when it comes to HR related obstacles that impact Agile individuals and teams. If we listen, here’s what we would hear:

  • “Can we team interview the candidate for attitude and fit?”
  • “I was an IT Development Manager. What’s my role now?”
  • “My manager doesn’t see half of what I do for my team. How can she possibly evaluate me?”
  • “With no opportunity for promotions in sight, how can I advance my career?”
  • “Why do we recognize individuals when we’re supposed to be focused on team success?”
  • “Charlie’s not working out. Can we as the team fire him?”

As the volume increases, how will HR and HR professionals respond?

“2016 will be the year of Agile HR … most HR teams have no clue what Agile HR means”

– HR Trend Institute

The reality is that most HR teams have no clue what Agile is, never mind how it will ultimately rock their world. Most Agile initiatives emerge from the grass-roots or are driven independently by IT functions with little to no involvement from HR. HR  sits on the sidelines and watches IT “do their thing”. There is a misconception that Agile exclusively falls under the IT domain; overlooking the fact that the core of Agile is about the people and culture – the sweet spots of the HR profession.

There are three significant change movements gaining momentum:

  1. Reinventing the way we work – whether it’s IT adopting Agile or an organization becoming more nimble.
  2. Reinventing HR – where HR is moving beyond its historical focus on basic people administration, compliance and transactions to a valued place at the executive table; ensuring context and alignment across the business to generate Customer delight.
  3. Reinventing organizations – as the level of human and organizational consciousness evolves from valuing meritocracy, accountability and innovation to valuing self-management, wholeness and evolutionary purpose. (See “Reinventing Organizations” by Frederic Laloux: http://www.reinventingorganizations.com/)

All three have the common denominator of people; an integral part along the entire timeline of each movement. As these three movements overlap – at the intersection – will be HR. So, who better to help navigate the emerging paths of each change than “the People’s people”?… otherwise known as “HR”.

An analysis of the Human Resources Professionals Association’s (HRPA) Competency Framework shown below can help guide which HR competencies will have the greatest impact (on a scale of 1 to 10) on Agile.

“How do we get HR started towards their destiny?”

If you’re an Agile team member, invite HR to start a conversation about what Agile is and how they can help you and the team.

If you’re an HR professional, here are some suggestions:

  • Learn about Agile
  • Visit with your Agile teams during sprint reviews or daily scrums
  • Talk to your friends and colleagues about their Agile experiences and challenges
  • Review in-progress HR process & tool changes through an Agile lens
  • Partner with IT and other Agile implementation stakeholders to guide the success of Agile

To help HR take the first step, here are some suggested Agile learning resources:

It’s time for HR to get off the sidelines and get in the game.  HR needs to be a “friend” to Agile, not perceived as a “foe”.

Borrowing from a Chinese proverb,

When the winds of change blow, some will build walls while others build windmills… the harnessing of your greatest natural resource, your people, into power.

Build windmills.


Affiliated Promotions:

Try our automated online Scrum coach: Scrum Insight - free scores and basic advice, upgrade to get in-depth insight for your team. It takes between 8 and 11 minutes for each team member to fill in the survey, and your results are available immediately. Try it in your next retrospective.

Please share!
Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailFacebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail
Berteig
Upcoming Courses
View Full Course Schedule
BERTEIG Real Agility Series:: Five Essential Agile Tools for Project Managers
Online
C$0.00
Nov 25
2019
Details
Certified Scrum Product Owner® (CSPO)
Toronto
C$1795.00
Nov 26
2019
Details
Advanced Certified ScrumMaster® (A-CSM)
Online
C$1599.00
Nov 29
2019
Details
Coach Skills for the Agile Workplace® (IPC-ACC)
Toronto
C$2018.00
Dec 2
2019
Details
Certified ScrumMaster® (CSM)
Toronto
C$1595.00
Dec 3
2019
Details
Kanban Management Professional® (KMP II)
Toronto
C$1795.00
Dec 5
2019
Details
Advanced Certified ScrumMaster® (A-CSM)
Online
C$1599.00
Dec 6
2019
Details
Certified Scrum Professional - ScrumMaster® (CSP-SM)
Online
C$2199.00
Dec 7
2019
Details
Certified ScrumMaster® (CSM)
Toronto
C$1595.00
Dec 9
2019
Details
Team Kanban Practitioner® (TKP)
Toronto
C$1195.00
Dec 10
2019
Details
Professional Scrum Master® (PSM I)
Toronto
C$1525.00
Dec 10
2019
Details
Kanban System Design® (KMP I)
Toronto
C$1795.00
Dec 11
2019
Details
Certified Scrum Product Owner® (CSPO)
Toronto
C$1795.00
Dec 12
2019
Details
Certified Scrum Professional - ScrumMaster® (CSP-SM)
Online
C$1869.15
Jan 10
2020
Details
Team Kanban Practitioner® (TKP)
Toronto
C$1015.75
Jan 16
2020
Details
Advanced Certified ScrumMaster® (A-CSM)
Online
C$1359.15
Jan 17
2020
Details
Certified Scrum Professional - ScrumMaster® (CSP-SM)
Online
C$1869.15
Jan 18
2020
Details
Advanced Certified ScrumMaster® (A-CSM)
Online
C$1359.15
Jan 18
2020
Details
Professional Scrum Master® (PSM I) [PSF Courseware]
London
C$1296.25
Jan 21
2020
Details
Certified ScrumMaster® (CSM)
Toronto
C$1355.75
Jan 21
2020
Details
Certified Scrum Product Owner® (CSPO)
Toronto
C$1525.75
Jan 23
2020
Details
Licensed Scrum Master Product Owner® (LSMPO)
Toronto
C$1695.75
Jan 28
2020
Details
Advanced Certified ScrumMaster® (A-CSM)
Online
C$1359.15
Feb 1
2020
Details
Certified ScrumMaster® (CSM)
Toronto
C$1355.75
Feb 4
2020
Details
Kanban System Design® (KMPI)
Toronto
C$1525.75
Feb 6
2020
Details
Professional Scrum Master® (PSM I)
Toronto
C$1270.75
Feb 11
2020
Details
Leading SAFe® with SA Certification (+FREE Scaling Workshop)
Toronto
C$1185.75
Feb 11
2020
Details
Certified ScrumMaster® (CSM)
Toronto
C$1355.75
Feb 25
2020
Details
Certified Scrum Product Owner® (CSPO)
Toronto
C$1525.75
Feb 27
2020
Details
Team Kanban Practitioner® (TKP)
Toronto
C$1015.75
Mar 4
2020
Details
Advanced Certified ScrumMaster® (A-CSM)
Online
C$1359.15
Mar 7
2020
Details
Advanced Certified ScrumMaster® (A-CSM)
Online
C$1359.15
Mar 8
2020
Details
Professional Scrum Master® (PSM I)
Toronto
C$1270.75
Mar 9
2020
Details
Licensed Scrum Master® (LSM)
Toronto
C$1355.75
Mar 10
2020
Details
Advanced Certified ScrumMaster® (A-CSM)
Online
C$1359.15
Mar 21
2020
Details
Advanced Certified ScrumMaster® (A-CSM)
Online
C$1359.15
Mar 22
2020
Details
Certified ScrumMaster® (CSM)
Toronto
C$1355.75
Mar 24
2020
Details
Certified Scrum Product Owner® (CSPO)
Toronto
C$1525.75
Mar 26
2020
Details
Kanban System Design® (KMPI)
Toronto
C$1525.75
Mar 31
2020
Details
Certified ScrumMaster® (CSM)
London
C$1525.75
Apr 1
2020
Details
Kanban Management Professional® (KMPII)
Toronto
C$1525.75
Apr 2
2020
Details
Professional Scrum Master® (PSM I)
Toronto
C$1270.75
Apr 20
2020
Details
Professional Scrum Master® (PSM I) [PSF Courseware]
Toronto
C$1270.75
Apr 27
2020
Details
Professional Scrum Master® (PSM I)
Toronto
C$1270.75
May 26
2020
Details