Summary of Why Agile Works

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“Agile” is no longer just a buzzword. Many organizations have shifted from a siloed, hierarchical organizational model to a flatter and more fluid company structure, hoping to be able to respond to change more quickly and effectively. Yet not every organization succeeds at realizing the promise of agile. David Ritter and Lindsay Chim from Boston Consulting Group describe a critical success factor in acualizing agile’s potential.

About the Authors

David Ritter and Lindsay Chim are directors at the Boston Consulting Group. 



People look for meaning in their jobs. An employee who understands his or her job’s purpose is more engaged and productive – yet it falls upon company leaders to outline how each work task contributes to the company’s overall goals and objectives. Providing this degree of clarity and coherence can be challenging, especially in large, complex organizations or at companies that undergo major organizational change. Companies that seek to adopt an agile model by reorganizing their teams into smaller, more flexible and autonomous “squads” or “tribes” run the risk of failing to align each unit to the overall company strategy, leading to overall confusion and a sense of disorientation.

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