April 23, 2018

4 Ways Leadership Drives Agile Impact

Most success depends on colleagues, on the team. People at the top have large egos, but you must never say ‘I’: it’s always ‘we’. Frank Lampl

In a recent article written by Tony Rost, CIO of Metal Toad, a leader asks, “How am I going to screw up our Agile transformation?” This strikes me as a critical question for leaders of Agile teams. The Project Management Institute ( says “Anecdotal evidence points to the relationship between the sponsor and project manager as the greatest contributing factor.” Leadership plays a critical role in driving new initiatives. As Agile approaches grow in organizations, the role of project sponsor has evolved from control to collaboration, from leading to supporting. This is not a simple change for an established leader. As Tony Rost says “You will fail by not realizing that Agile is an executive leadership philosophy, not a project management workflow.” These kinds of fluffy answers from Agile zealots can seem, to me, pompous and esoteric. That said, this answer is dead on. That’s why a leader must change to drive Agile success. It’s not about ‘Agile’ as much as the needs of the organization. Here are the four critical adjustments leaders must make to drive Agile success to drive impact. 

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