Agile Thinking

What is Agile Thinking? In Agile it is called the Agile “Mindset”. An Agile Mindset is the combination of beliefs, values, principles, and actions that embrace the concepts of the Agile Manifesto and Servant Leadership.

Servant leadership is  a philosophy and set of standards that enriches the lives of individuals, builds better organizations, and ultimately creates a more just and caring world.

Robert Greenleaf,  author of The Power of Servant Leadership, discusses the following 9 Principles of Servant Leadership:

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  1. Listening. Listen receptively to what is being said and support teams in problem-  solving and decision-making.
  2. Empathy. Understand and empathize with others.
  3. Healing. Support teams both physically and mentally and take steps to help  them be happy and engaged.
  4. Self-awareness. Get to know yourself and understand your strengths and weaknesses. Think deeply about your emotions and behavior and consider how they  affect the people around you.
  5. Persuasion. Use persuasion rather than their authority to encourage people to  take action. Strive to build consensus so that everyone supports decisions.
  6. Conceptualization. Create mission and vision statements. Help your teams understand how their work ties into the aim of the enterprise.
  7. Foresight. Use tools like SWOT analysis to help predict what’s likely to happen in the future by learning from past experiences, identifying what’s happening  now, and understanding the consequences of your decisions.
  8. Stewardship. Take responsibility for the actions and performance of your team,  and be accountable for the role team members play in your organization.
  9. Commitment to the growth of people. Be committed to the personal and professional  development of your teams. Build a sense of community within your organization  by providing opportunities for people to interact with one another across the company.

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In 2001, 17 people with different backgrounds in software development met in the ski hills of Utah to decide on an alternative to documentation driven, heavyweight software development processes.

Although this group consisted of independent thinkers, and sometimes competitors to each other, they held a set of compatible values, a set of values based on trust and respect for each other and promoting organizational models based on people, collaboration, and building the types of organizational communities in which we would want to work…and they created the following 4 Values of the Agile Manifesto:

The Agile Manifesto provides the foundation for effective, empowered, self-organizing teams and it was a turning point that clarified the new approach and started to bring the benefits of these innovative methods to the whole development industry.

In my next post I will talk about examples of Personal and Life Coaching Techniques I have read about, discussed, and used myself to facilitate my Meetup group, Common Threads – Beyond the Pages and the lasting impressions they’ve had on me as well as the Common Threads I see between them and Agile Coaching in my professional life.

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