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McKinsey 18 Organizational Agility Practices Reinforce The Agile ModelĀ®
by Nick Horney, Ph.D., Leadership Agility Practice Leader

The 18 Organization Agility Practices identified in the recent McKinsey Report (October, 2017), "How to create an agile organization," align with and reinforce The Agile ModelĀ® and associated organizational agility transformation process Agility Consulting launched in 2001.  
 
Contact us to discuss how we can support your organizational agility transformation.


Organizational Agility on the Rise but still less than 25% Minority: McKinsey Global Survey October 2017 
By Mike Richardson, Team Agility Practice Leader
 

McKinsey just released its  October 2017 Global Survey   with which they chose to focus on organizational agility:  for which the headlines are:
"Rapid changes in competition, demand, technology, and regulations have made it more important than ever for organizations to be able to respond and adapt quickly. But according to a recent McKinsey Global Survey, organizational agility-the ability to quickly reconfigure strategy, structure, processes, people, and technology toward value-creating and value-protecting opportunities-is elusive for most.  Many respondents say their companies have not yet fully implemented agile ways of working, either company-wide or in the performance units where they work, though the advantages are clear. Respondents in agile units report better performance than all others do, and companies in more volatile or uncertain environments are more likely than others to be pursuing agile transformations.

Few companies are yet reaping these benefits, but that may soon change; the results also indicate that organizational agility is catching fire. For many respondents, agility ranks as a high strategic priority in their performance units. Moreover, companies are transforming activities in several parts of the organization-from innovation and customer experience to operations and strategy-to become more agile.

Respondents in all sectors believe more of their employees should be working in agile ways.

The survey also confirms that agility pays off. Eighty-one percent of respondents in agile units report a moderate or significant increase in overall performance since their transformations began. And on average, respondents in agile units are 1.5 times more likely than others to report financial outperformance relative to peers, and 1.7 times more likely to report outperforming their peers on nonfinancial measures."

Human Resource Management and The Great Unlearning
By Ben Baran, Ph.D., Agility Analytics Practice Leader

Exciting changes in the world of human resources (HR) abound.  As noted by Stephen Barley (University of California Santa Barbara), Beth Bechky, and Frances Milliken (both of New York University) in their recent    article  in Academy of Management Discoveries, 

"Few people would deny that the nature of work and employment has changed over the last four decades, not only in the United States but in many countries worldwide. Moreover, the nature of work is likely to continue to change as we move further into the 21st century."

Such changes make HR work continually dynamic, with evolving practices with regard to new technologies, the increasing prevalence of contingent workers, and more. Barley and his coauthors also mention the rise of artificial intelligence and the rise of project-based work as fundamental shifts that will influence careers and even how people think about themselves in relation to their organizations and society. 

These changes alone are enough to keep HR leaders and other executives up at night. 

Yet I wonder if there are additional, perhaps even more fundamental shifts underway that will forever alter how people behave and interact at work. 

Those changes have to do with a recognition of the ingenious beauty of human organizing, the remarkable capacity that we all have to iterate toward something better, and the foolishness-and downright arrogance-that can accompany our best managerial attempts to control.   
 

Agile Chat - A Brave New World
By Tom O'Shea, CMC, Organizational Agility Practice Leader

Does anyone else remember when 2001: A Space Odyssey was just an epic science-fiction film produced and directed in 1968 by Stanley Kubrick about unimaginable things that could happen way off in the distant future? 
Kubrick portrayed a future that could involve artificial intelligence and extraterrestrial life in profound ways.  For many of us, it was a somewhat daunting first introduction to the idea and possible risk of super computers taking control of our universe.  Remember, 1968 is twenty-five years before the dawning of the internet and the turbo speed of transformation triggered from that point forward.

Can you still remember the spooky voice of "HAL",  the special new 9000 series super computer embedded as the control system in the space ship, talking to Astronaut Dave just after Dave realizes that HAL is a serious safety risk - i sure can.   The issue is that HAL has concluded that the astronaut team mission is no longer consistent with his mission programming and therefore it is "his" job to protect the ship.   

Agility Consulting Affiliate Corner: Tom Marin

Agility Affiliate Tom Marin recently spent time in Birmingham, AL at a two and half day Agility Workshop facilitated by Dr. Nick Horney in association with The University of Alabama, Bama at Work Division.  In this first ever offering by the University in its Affiliate status, Tom gathered along with five tables of executives all interested in honing their leadership skills.
 
Taking his own Agile Leadership skills to a new level of expertise, Tom stated that, "as a certified agility consultant, my main take-always and thus enhancements to my Agility practice included":
 
1) Putting Agility into action in working with his own staff,
2) Developing even greater skills on how to facilitate a three-day agility seminar individually,
3) Creating and environment conducive in helping others learn about agility in an informed and enjoyable manner.

Tom summarizes by posing the question for all consultants interested in becoming Agility Affiliates as, "was it worth my time away along with travel and investment?  Absolutely!" 
 
Tom Marin | President
Certified Agility Consultant
MarketCues, Inc

Creating Agility in a VUCA World!




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OCTOBER 2017
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