Tuesday, November 13, 2012

On Agility, Culture and Intelligence

Deal and Kennedy (1982) proposed a model of organizational culture, which depended on two factors, risk and the speed of feedback.

Source: Deal and Kennedy

Meanwhile, speed of feedback also affects organizational intelligence. Shorter feedback loops are associated with greater agility and responsiveness, and faster learning, and is a popular meme of the Agile Software movement. Shahzad Bhatti is one of those who emphasizes the link with John Boyd's OODA loop.

"One of key finding he made was that shorter feedback or iteration loop of OODA with low quality was better than longer or tiring cycle of OODA with high quality. Despite the fact that everyone calls his/her organization agile, this feedback loop is real essense of agility."

So that seems to associate Agile with the upper two quadrants of the Deal and Kennedy model, and OODA with the top left quadrant.

So then what are the cultural implications of Agile for the host organization?

Notes and references

Lisa Crispin, Shortening the Feedback Loop (March 2011)
Ilan Kirschenbaum, What does a butterfly say at the end of the day? (May 2012)
Rune Larsen, Know your feedback loop – why and how to optimize it (Oct 2012)
Thomas Sundberg, Why should you use different technical practises when you develop software? (April 2011)

Places are still available on my Organizational Intelligence workshop, November 22nd.

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