Agile organisations typically have three areas of accountability to deliver products and services in an agile way:
Where does the manager fit in?
The manager’s role in an agile world is to make efficiency and productivity a reality.
To do this in the past, managers have typically “managed” individuals in vertical, functional silos (i.e., Development, Quality Assurance, Finance, etc.). In the agile enterprise, though, management is horizontal:
Set a strong vision and mission of why agility is important for the organisation. Agile can reap significant benefits:
Make it clear that these “transformation” outcomes are everyone’s job. Improve your overall organisation by having each person take a step toward these benefits.
All of these things are easy to achieve, but it requires people to change the way they work. If you’re not explicit about the change that’s required, if people just tweak the way they work and don’t really change, you won’t get agile’s benefits. If you don’t participate yourself, then the people you lead won’t change their behaviour.
All agile frameworks have specific rules that make it effective. When only parts are enacted, agile isn’t as effective. A manager’s job is to set expectations that for agile to work teams must work within its rules.
Cheney, G., Christensen, L. T., Zorn, T. E., Ganesh, G. (2011). Organizational communication in an age of globalization: Issues, reflections, practices (2nd ed., pp. 215–251). Long Grove, IL: Waveland Press.
Delarue, A., Van Hootegem, G., Procter, S., Burridge, M. (2008). Teamworking and organizational performance: A review of survey-based research. International Journal of Management Reviews, 10, 127–148.
Deming, W. E. (2001) Out of the Crisis, p23-24.
Maytom, B. (2018) Whare is the manager role in Scrum?
Piper, R. (2019) What’s a manager’s role on a Scrum Team?
Sutherland, J. and Schwaber, K. (2020) The Scrum Guide. The Definitive Guide to Scrum: The Rules of the Game.
Van der Hoek, M., Groeneveld, S., Kuipers, B. (2016) Goal Setting in Teams: Goal Clarity and Team Performance in the Public Sector.