Lost in Translation – The Manager’s Role in Agile

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On April 19, 2021, Michae Sahota presented on “Lost in Translation – The Manager’s Role in Agile” at the DC Scrum User Group.


Your organization has moved to autonomous, self-organizing teams. Everyone is trained and coached on their new role. But what about managers? The role of a manager is _undefined_. Management is told, “Go figure out your new role” or simply “Stop micromanaging”. They are often still responsible for the outcomes, yet are stripped of authority. It turns out managers are people too – and their treatment is often inhumane and unhelpful for creating lasting change. Managers were seen as the glue that holds an organization together … now what happens? How can we all journey together?

We offer an alternate view, where Agile Transformation is understood as an evolution of organizational culture. Success depends on shifts in the behaviors of both staff and management. The Agile Mindset or Being Agile is a prerequisite for making structural changes. Jumping to advanced stages of evolution where there is high autonomy is a painful trap. An incremental and iterative (Agile) approach to shifting power away from managers to individual contributors is more effective

The video recording of this presentation is limited to members of the DC Scrum User Group. You can access it here.