Day 1 | Reimagining Management
Friday, 22nd September
9:00 AM - 06:00 PM
Day One of the World Agility Forum showcases the passion and mindset of executives who make these kinds of changes happen. It transcends blueprints, frameworks, and gameplans and explores the different mindsets and change of heart that are needed to be successful in the digital age.
The World Agility Forum will highlight how leaders are realizing that the organization must up its own game to cope with the fast-changing marketplace. The move for change increasingly comes from the top. The question shifts from “Why do we have to change?” to: “Why can’t we have what they’re having?” Top managers increasingly realize that success not only needs a fundamentally different way of managing: some are starting to see that they too will have to change . Within many large organizations, fruitful discussions are occurring. There are often significant islands of change advocates. For some, the shift is non-negotiable. If the firm won’t support change, the best talent goes elsewhere.
The reality is that effective digital transformation requires a re-imagination of the very concept of management. True, not every management practice has to be discarded. But instead of an assumption that existing management practices should be retained, a necessary starting assumption is that every practice must be re-examined.
CEO's talking to the audience about how to improve their companies
Day 1.5 | Masterclass On Reimagining Management
Saturday, 23rd September
9:30 AM - 12:30 PM
Led by Steve Denning and colleagues, the three-hour masterclass will explore the multiple facets of re-imagining management including:
- Instead of giving primacy to the maximizing shareholder value, the goal of the firm is to create value for customers, along with a business model that generates profits as a result.
- Instead of bureaucracy where individuals report to bosses, the firm mostly deploys self-organizing team-based arrangements
- Instead of starting from what the firm can produce that might be sold to customers, firms work backwards from what customers need and then figure out how that might be delivered in a sustainable way.
- Instead of limiting themselves to what the firm itself can provide, the firm often mobilizes other firms to help meet user needs.
- Instead of the steep hierarchies of authority of industrial era-firms, digital firms tend to be organized in horizontal networks of competence.
To support these principles, the firm may need to embrace processes that are the opposite of industrial-era management.
- To support these principles, the firm may need to embrace processes that are the opposite of industrial-era management.
- Instead of leadership being limited to the top of the organization, leadership now occurs at every level.
- Instead of strategy limited to protecting the existing business, strategy is dynamic, interactive, and value-creating;
- Instead of innovation limited to marginal improvements to existing products, Innovation enhances existing businesses and creates new businesses;
- Instead of sales and marketing that are making the numbers, they are now about making a difference for customers and users;
- Instead of HR that operates as an agent of control, HR is about attracting and enabling talent;
- Instead of a focus outputs and efficiencies, operations is about exceeding expected outcomes at lower cost.
- Instead of budgeting being a battle for resources among the silos, budgeting is driven by strategy
- A shift from giving primacy to making money to giving primacy to creating value for customers.
Workshops and Masterclass
Day 2 | Reimagining Human Factors
MONDAY, 25th September
9:00 AM - 06:00 PM
Over the last hundred years or so, many great thinkers have written and spoken about the human aspect of creating great workplaces, from Mary Parker Follett in the 1920s. Elton Mayo and Chester Barnard in the 1930s, Abraham Maslow in the 1940s, Douglas McGregor in the 1960s, Peters and Waterman in the 1980s, and on to Smith and Katzenbach in the 1990s, and Richard Hackman and Atul Gawande in the 2000s, to Amy Edmondson today. There’s a continuity of thinking about what’s involved in creating great workplaces. Yet today, relatively few large organizations are implementing these insights across their entire organization. Worldwide, engagement in the workplace is rarely better than 20% and many organizations have a significant contingent of actively disengaged workers.
On Day Two, the World Agility Forum will explore why the well-known findings of the last century are not more widely implemented. It will examine the cause of the disconnect between the principles that are professed and the principles that are practiced. The size and universality of the gap send a signal that despite all this talk about collaboration and teamwork, organizations don't really mean it. And it becomes undiscussable.
The World Agility Forum will explore the possibility put forward by Amy Edmondson that “the answer to almost everything in the way people are treated in the workplace is to make it discussable. Many of the things that plague us in organizations will plague us less if we can talk about them out loud and together. That’s because once we name it, it becomes awkward to just live with it. Once it's discussable, it becomes a team problem and a solving opportunity. Now we've got to figure out how are we going to sort of close this gap between our aspirations, which are real and important, and the various shackles that are keeping us back.”
Talks, Workshops, and Networking: Human Behaviour, Organisational Culture
Day 3 | Reimagining Agile
TUESDAY, 26th September
9:00 AM - 06:00 PM
The World Agility Forum confronts the fact that although Agile practitioners have succeeded in the words of the 2001 Agile Manifesto in “uncovering better ways of developing software by doing it and helping others do it,” the broader objective of transferring these better ways to the management of entire organizations has rarely been successful. After 20 years of effort, the age of agile has not arrived.
The World Agility Forum will examine why and explore the re-imagination of Agile itself.
Thus, Agile at its best was brilliant in software development and the world has learned much by analogy for management in general. At its best, it involved both mindsets and the heart.
But Agile at its worst created the commercialized practices of the Agile industry, a great deal of “Agile in name only”, Agile “sweatshops”, Agile “feature factories”, simplistic Agile frameworks and processes, Agile faction fights, and arrangements that aimed at producing “twice the work in half the time.” These processes and practices were often the antithesis of everything that the Agile Manifesto stood for. As one critic (John Alger) wrote, “Something somewhere has gone terribly wrong.”
The World Agility will examine these flaws and see how they can be remedied, as part of the general re-imagination of management described in Day One and Day One Point Five.
At the same time, the World Agility Forum will identify how Agile practices have often unwittingly adopted industrial-era management practices. The Forum will help identify and label such practices as “obsolete” and treat them a disease that must be eradicated from software development, thus contributing to the re-imagination of management itself.
Workshops and Networking