A version of this
article was originally published in the blog section of
A guiding book
of foundational principles and practices for the development of an agile
mindset is Pamela Meyer’s The Agility Shift. A core section of the book is
devoted to discussing and giving examples of agility in action, or as the
author calls it “making shift happen” through the 5 dynamics that fuel the
the 5 Dynamics?
the author, those are the five dynamics agile leaders, teams, and organizations
must intentionally engage with and develop to thrive in an ever-changing work
Here are our
two cents on these dynamics, based on a close reading of the book:
What you do must fulfill a purpose and must
support your team values, and ambitions.
You must respond to challenges and
opportunities in a timely fashion.
You must face challenges and changes with a
positive and proactive mindset.
What you do with what you have is a measure of
your creative thinking and problem-solving capabilities.
You must embrace the cycle of action and
reflection, as the path for learning and growth.
these daily practices “dynamics” to emphasize that they are “active” modes of
thinking and behaving. To develop as an agile leader, team, and organization
you must apply these dynamic ways of looking at challenges and opportunities,
on a daily basis.
engagement with these dynamics look like in real-life work scenarios?
The systems and processes in place are consistently
reevaluated and realigned with the values and ambitions or goals of the team.
All outdated systems or processes for which no one within the team or
leadership can answer the question “Why?” should be assessed, transformed, or
The moment a challenge comes in the form of a
system breakdown, failure, or a customer complaint, a transparent and flexible
SOP will be put in motion.
Hard hits to the organization, leadership, or
team’s systems, processes, strategies, or egos will be faced with empathy,
self-inquiry, self-accountability, and growth-mindset.
Leaders, teams, and individuals within teams
must be able to exercise creative thinking and problem solving, to tackle
system changes and customer requests with a limited amount of resources.
Effective communication channels and strong relational webs must be created and
After every challenge, small win or loss,
opportunity, and action “taken,” there must be a session of individual and team
reflection. These sessions will generate learning and growth experiences, new
strategies, SOPs, celebration, or course correction.
As agile teams
and leaders, you may be already incorporating some or most of these dynamics in
your interactions with team members, other team leads, customers, clients, and
The next step
is to make it an intentional practice, a part of your strategic conversations.
These dynamics may also provide a framework for individual team member
engagement, development, and self-empowerment.
Based on these
five dynamics, to assess your own agile mindset and practice, ask yourself:
How is my work and my approach relevant? Do I
have a clear “why”?
How quickly am I responding to challenges and
opportunities as they come? Am I leaving some tasks untouched, and letting
other tasks fall by the wayside?
How quickly and strongly am I bouncing back
Am I making the most of my tangible and
Am I taking time to reflect on my actions, my
responses, and my thoughts? Am I creating and cultivating a safe space for
self-reflection, self-assessment, meaningful or strategic conversations, and
teams, are actively evolving teams. If these 5 dynamic perspectives have shown
you, and your team, another element to cultivate in your daily practice,
awesome! But the hard work of evolving is never a done deal. In agile teams,
there should always be some room left for improvement.
For now, make
an intentional commitment to incorporate and practice these 5 dynamics and stay
Recommended book: The Agility Shift by Pamela Meyers
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