During the couple of years that I was involved in efforts that needed deep involvement with CMMI and SDLC. We “had” to get our CMMI in place. During the appraisal, though the effort was long and intensive I realized the following: If we were not able to find an artifact or a process was not completed, we could trace it back to something else, that should have happened sometime ago / or some steps ago and done by someone else! I like to call this phenomenon: “the thin thread that united us”. Yes! Even in intensive processes the lines are thin, fragile, and exposed.
Isn’t it the same in Agile today? The lines that connect us or separate us are thin, fragile.
To quote Charles Duhigg from his book “The power of habit” – There are 4 aspects that are needed to create a habit: A cue, A routine, A reward and A craving.
The cue is the same (initiate work). The reward is the same (complete work). We just changed the routine. (from legacy to Agile). And to change the routine we need a new craving
We are attempting to replace the routine that allowed us to hide behind intensive documents by open conversations and collaborative work environment. Achieving this act seems simple on paper (or while we speak and read) but in reality we need to peel layers and layers of masks that we have accumulated over time – gathered from various aspects of our lives.
Sometimes we change our routines by making new connections, letting go of what we have currently. The cue remains. The reward remains. We just get bored of existing routine. We just changed how we get to the reward. Maybe there was new craving that gets introduced.
What is the craving in Agile that makes us create new routines? new habits?
People don’t crave for change. Or crave to be vulnerable. For many being connected is not a craving. Neither will they buy into an artificial craving of being special to someone, or be recognized. Then what is it?
In Agile the craving is self awareness. There has to be a craving for self worth. A sense of being whole. Of feeling valuable to oneself. We need to find paths to create that craving. That is when I feel we as Agile Coaches are not really change agents! or personal transformation agents! We are facilitators to enable self love, self worth and self awareness. And we help identify one habit. Change its routine. Identify the ripple effects and the unintended consequences – and help individuals and teams cope with the ripple effect that one small habit change causes.