Agile Leadership and the NBA? Interesting reading about the importance of Agile

Recently Rick Freedman wrote an article comparing Agile teams with NBA teams. The article immediately caught my attention and begged the question – what does the NBA have to do with Agile Project Management?

Even if you don’t follow the NBA, Ricks point makes sense. He boils down Agile Project Management to the essence of inspiring teams to deliver great outcomes by assuring that the work of the group is better than the individual parts. Sounds easy but think about how hard it is to get a group of highly talented individuals to actually work together toward the greater goal. The leadership style needed to get individuals to perform better as a team than on their own is the sign of a great leader and is needed in our Agile leaders as well.

Thus, the leadership management style used in Agile projects is extremely important for the development and delivery of Agile projects. A good leader will instill a sense of Trust in its team that will help them make the right decisions at the hardest of times. Just think about some of the pressures put on our Agile delivery teams: Can you help your team deal with the pressure of not having the whole project vision, help them deal with constant change and recognize each other’s special skills and take advantage of them?

Here are some of his suggestions for the creation of a NBA like self-directed Agile teams:

1- Get the right people on your team
2 - Articulate the project vision, boundaries, and roles
3 - Stimulate interaction
4 - Facilitate participatory decisions
5 - Insist on accountability (Individual and Team)
6 - Steer, don’t control

Follow these suggestions and you will be on the right track to becoming an outstanding Agile leader! By building a team that can be self-directed, inspired and committed - the results will show!

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