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Många personlighetstester har gjorts genom åren, alltid med förhoppning om att få den där fantastiska kandidaten som ska göra bra och stora förändringar inom företaget och med förhoppningen att slippa individer som inte passar för tjänsten och kan komma att kosta företaget en massa pengar.

Vi har t ex:

  • Briggs and Meyers – MBTI Meyers briggs type indicator
  • Martson, Henrickson and R Reed – Thomas Behaviour profile
  • Ned Hermann – H D I thinking profile
  • Andy Lothian INSIGHTS typindikator
  • G I Gurdjieff – Eneagram typology
  • Raymond B. Cattell, Donald Fiske och H.J. Eysenck, McCrae & John, Big five personality traits, även kallad femfaktormodellen
  • Dr. Richard E. Zackrison, Ph. D., Dr. Eric Zackrison, Interpersonal Dynamics Inventory, IDI

Ja, det finns en hel massa! Jag gör inte anspråk här på att ha täckt dem alla.

Tveksamma grunder

Naturligtvis kan individer lära sig en massa om sig själv genom att göra personlighetstester. Jag har själv gjort flera och fått insikter om mig själv, men tyvärr finns det också personlighetstester som har mycket tveksamma grunder för att användas i tex rekrytering. De har ingen/tillräcklig bas inom forskning (DISC och MBTI är tex. ett sådant exempel, som jag tror de flesta känner till i nuläget). Tester som saknar psykometriskt stöd – dvs. det är alltså ineffektiva i att förutsäga individens framgång på jobbet och hur de kan komma att prestera. Tester som är för ospecifika eller inte tillräckligt nyanserade. Som jag nämnde tidigare kan man få självinsikt som är bra att ha, men användandet i en rekryteringssituation är något helt annat.

De här testerna försöker mäta hur personer skiljer sig åt, eller beskriva vad människor GÖR och hur individen ÄR med utgångspunkt i personligheten. Som du säkert märker så boxar man in människor och kategoriserar dem i de här testerna – vilket jag själv inte är förtjust i – eftersom vi är mycket mer än så som människor. Men vad är det egentligen som ligger bakom personligheterna? Varför gör individer som de gör? Det tycker jag är ännu intressantare!

Människor är komplexa varelser, mycket mer komplexa än vad något test kan fånga. Jag har sett duktiga kandidater sållats bort för att de inte kommer igenom personlighetstester, andra klarar dem och får anställning. Dessutom kan samma person som inte kommit igenom testet redan ha haft en tf. anställning och visat sig vara fantastisk, men då tjänsten ska tillsättas med ordinarie så duger plötsligt inte personen pga att den inte kom igenom personlighetstestet. Här har relationer byggts upp, jobbet flyter på, progressen är tydlig. Då ersätts hen, man börjar om, och den nya kandidaten kanske inte visar sig vara en så bra fit ändå alla gånger, tyvärr. Nu pratar jag inte om enstaka tillfällen, utan det här har jag sett hända rätt frekvent. Dessutom övar människor inför testerna för att “hamna rätt” i dem, vilket då inte ens ger självinsikter och inte heller en “rättvis” profil. Tjänsten de sökte på ett ställe och inte fick, pga testet, gjorde att de inför nästa ansökan övade och såg till att de hamnade “rätt” på nästa. Det känns inte direkt tillförlitligt. För att komma igenom ska du ha en viss profil för tex en chefstjänst.

Vem är det egentligen som ska vara nöjd med kandidaten? De som ska jobba med individen, eller ska det se rätt ut i någon statistik, eller något annat? Det är en viktig fråga att ställa sig.

Forskning kring underliggande psykologiska behov

Det finns forskning som går djupare och tittar på varför människor gör som de gör. Inte bara personligheten. Vad är det som motiverar oss, vad får oss att gå upp ur sängen och göra saker varje dag? Vad är det som gör att någon är benägen att ta ganska stora risker och någon annan är väldigt försiktig? Hur når vi värdebaserad lycka? Det är något som forskats på både av Steven Reiss och Deci och Ryan bla. Vår inre motivation och underliggande psykologiska behov.

Vi människor har många lager som påverkar oss, det är väldigt vanligt att vi fokuserat på det yttre lagret – vad vi ser. Dvs vår personlighet, identitet eller typer av beteenden. Under det laget så kommer vi i kontakt med vårt hur – våra värderingar och hur vi är präglade utifrån vårt arv och miljö. Innerst i kärnan finns vårt varför, det som är motorn till våra beslut – vår inre motivation. Allt detta, alla dessa lager samspelar och gör det svårt för oss att kunna sortera ut vad som tillhör vad. Vi kan ha samma “varför” men olika “hur”, därför kan det bli svårt att utläsa vad som är personlighet och vad som är motivation.

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Motivation är ett begrepp som många gånger är missförstått då det är lätt att blanda ihop inre och yttre motivation. Med den här postern vill vi förklarar det viktigaste du behöver veta om motivation så att fler kan ha bra dialoger med varandra kring vad inre motivation handlar om. 

Läs mer om alla posterns olika delar här nedan, och ladda ner och använda postern gratis i PDF-format.

Ladda ner Motivation i ett nötskal gratis (PDF) >

Vill du lära dig mer, anmäl dig till gratis frukostwebinar Inre motivation i ett Nötskal 15 februari

Vad är motivation och forskning om motivation

När vi tänker på motivation associeras det oftast med det som kallas för yttre motivation, dvs. det vi brukar sammanfatta med morot och piska. I en organisation brukar det översättas till bonusar, förmåner eller titlar. Inre motivation handlar mer om det lustfyllda, det vi får energi av och det som håller oss motiverade över tid. Engagemang handlar mer om inställning och beteende, det har inget med inre motivation att göra.

Yttre motivation är ofta lön, bonus, förmåner och kanske titlar, och forskning visar att det inte är ett hållbart sätt. Inre motivation leder till bättre prestation vid all typ av beslutsfattning, speciellt i en komplexa frågor. Yttre motivation minskar den psykologiska tryggheten, vilket leder till sämre förmåga att innovera. En annan viktig slutsats är att inre och yttre motivation inte är positivt kopplade till varandra. Tvärtom rapporterar tre studier ett negativt samband; när den yttre motivationen är hög är den inre motivationen låg. Därför är det viktigt att fokuserar på den inre motivationen då det ger mest effekt.


MyNeeds har vidareutvecklat Self Determination Theory (SDT) tre psykologiska behov till att bli sex psykologiska behov. SDT har sedan 80-talet varit den mest etablerade motivationsforskningen i världen och är än idag aktuell. MyNeeds forskning har pågått sedan 2011 och har tillämpats inom näringslivet sedan dess. Förutom att titta på den individuella motivationen har MyNeeds även kartlagt vad det betyder för grupper och organisationer utifrån komplex systemteori.

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Lärande en nödvändighet

Många företag ser nödvändigheten i att bygga lärande organisationer eftersom dagens samhälle ser väldigt annorlunda ut än det tidigare, och de företag som inte utvecklas i hög takt dör och försvinner från marknaden (tråkigt nog, men ja – det är den krassa verkligheten). Paradigmskiftet har tagit oss hit. Saker går avsevärt snabbare, är mer komplext och går inte alltid att förutse.

Medarbetare är den viktigaste tillgången ett företag har, utan medarbetares kunskap är ett företag ingenting. Många företag slåss om arbetskraft som har “rätt” kompetens. Problemet är att “rätt” kompetens idag inte nödvändigtvis betyder rätt kompetens i morgon. Så om vi inte bygger upp organisationer på ett sätt där lärande kan spridas, där folk kan göra nödvändiga förändringar snabbt – utan rigorösa hindrande processer och beslutsstrukturer, så kommer medarbetares kompetens att vara inaktuell och lärandet stagnera i stället för att utvecklas. Det innebär att vi inte längre kan göra skillnad på arbete och lärande.

HR har en central roll i att bygga lärande organisationer tillsammans med chefer, men hur gör man egentligen? Vad är viktiga delar att göra och på vilket sätt? Jag kommer att ta upp några tankar här.

Det startar med ett tankesätt av att allting kan göras bättre än vad det är i nuläget. Vi letar ständigt efter områden som kan förbättras, genom att vi lärt oss vad som funkar och inte i dagsläget (från verkliga data), alltid med ett helhetstänk som grund. Vi skapar både lokala förbättringsgrupper där medarbetare i team kan förbättra sitt arbete tillsammans. Utöver det behöver vi även tvärfunktionella förbättringsgrupper där man samlas för att lösa problem i processer och flöden som flera berörs av (tex folk från flera olika avdelningar) tillsammans. Dessutom finns det även behov av tvärorganisatoriska förbättringsgrupper där hela värdekedjor (end-to-end) utvecklas och förbättras i samverkan med kunder och leverantörer. OM vi lär oss tillsammans, och förbättrar tillsammans på det här sättet – i stället för i silos – så blir det lättare att göra relevanta förändringar och vi kommer ifrån suboptimering. Gör vi det ofta och kontinuerligt så får det enormt stor utväxling i organisationen som alla kan dra nytta av direkt.

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En VD sa en gång att han inte vill se företaget missa en enda möjlighet till med kunderna bara för att marknadsavdelningen inte hade budget att marknadsföra nya tjänster och produkter som uppstod baserat på ny information under året. Han kände att de var fast i den budgetering de hade gjort, istället för att lyssna på kunderna och göra sitt bästa för att leverera det kunderna verkligen behövde. De var fast i en rigid budget-fälla och kunde inte vara smidiga nog.

Att alla samlas kring kunden och har möjlighet att skifta fokus som EN organisation för att delta i dansen har blivit en viktig konkurrenskraft för företag idag.

Vad är “VUCA”

Traditionell budgetering och finansiell styrning fungerar inte bra med agila sätt att arbeta och stödjer inte strategisk flexibilitet som vi ofta behöver i dagens VUCA-värld. VUCA är ett akronym som står för Volatility, uncertainty, complexity och ambiguity. Dvs en värd som är flyktig (där saker förändras snabbt och oförutsägbart), osäker (där vi kan ha information som står i konflikt med varandra), komplex (saker hänger ihop och påverkar annat på ett oförutsägbart sätt) och tvetydig (uttalanden kan ha mer än en betydelse) – vilket vi kanske såg ännu tydligare under pandemin tex.

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För många år sedan när jag började jobba som agil coach så var det en sak som jag hade svårt att förstå. Fast det till synes fanns ledare som verkade förstå vad de behövde göra för att möjliggöra agilitet så hände det lite, trots att de responderade med många bra svar och tankar när de frågat mig om råd. Dialogerna vi hade gjorde att jag fick en förväntan om att saker skulle börja rulla och att förändringens vindar börjat blåsa – ändå var det vindstilla.

Det fick mig att vilja förstå vad det är som händer här. Det gällde inte bara en ledare, det var nästan alla. Många år senare läste jag en bok som jag tyckte gav mig många svar, och efter det ägnade jag ett halvår till att gå ett coachingprogram för en av forskarna i *boken, för att i nästa steg kunna jobba med ledare i att utveckla deras ledarskaps agilitet med ett tillhörande 360-verktyg. Nu vill jag dela med mig till dig som är intresserad.

Vad är ledarskapsagiltet?

Ledarskapsagilitet eller leadership agiliy – vad är det, kanske du tänker? Det har Bill Joiner och Stephen Josephs forskat 5 år kring. Under den tiden har de kommit fram till vilka kompetenser som krävs hos ledare för att klara av den turbulenta ekonomin och komplexiteten vi behöver hantera idag. Det handlar om konkreta handlingar som krävs av ledare, inte bara att man förstår vad som behöver göras.

Deras forskning tar upp tre olika områden ledare behöver kunna agera inom

  • Leda organisatorisk förändring
  • Förbättra team-prestationer
  • Engagera sig i svåra samtal där något värdefullt står på spel

Bill och Stephen fokuserar även på 4 olika kompetenser inom vart och ett av de här tre områdena.

  • Den första är “Agilitet i att sätta kontexten ” vilket handlar om situationsmedvetenhet där och då, och känsla av vad som skapar mening. Tex vad visionen bör vara.
  • Den andra är “intressent (stakeholder) agilitet,” som handlar om förståelse för intressenter och maktstil som används av ledaren. Att kunna få intressenter att enas kring en gemensam bild och hur du använder din egen makt och inflytande för att hantera det. Är tex. maktstilen starkt hävdande eller tillbakahållande för att tillmötesgå andra?
  • Den tredje är “kreativ agilitet” som handlar om att ha ett reflekterande omdöme och medvetenhet i att kunna koppla ihop saker. Tex att faktiskt adressera systemiska kulturella och underliggande affärsproblem istället för bara de problem som pockar på mest och kanske ses som enklare att lösa.
  • Den sista är “agilitet i att leda sig själv” som handlar om sin egen självmedvetenhet och en motivation till att utvecklas. (jag beskriver alla dessa kraftigt förenklat här).
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As mentioned in the previous flow post, flow is the secret sauce for delivering maximum value to users in the shortest possible time.  

By optimizing flow, you’ll be able to take control of your workflow and more quickly (and continuously) adapt your product strategy and development processes, which is critical for any organization wanting to become more product-led. The right solutions will be identified and delivered faster because feedback loops will become shorter

At the end of this article, I will share 9 ways to optimize flow to become more product-led that came out of a great conversation with fellow Dandy Johan Wildros, an expert in using Lean Agile principles to optimize flow. We worked together at If insurance on an Agile transformation of one of their core systems. You’ll also find helpful tips for getting started and things to watch out for. Feel free to jump to the tips at the end if you’re eager to see the 9 ways.

Product-Led Organizations

In a Product-Led organization, delivering products that solve real customer problems is the top priority. Such organizations recognize that business, product, and technology must work in harmony in order to build products customers love AND are equally valuable for the business. They optimize for their business outcomes, align their product strategy to these goals, and prioritize working on that will help develop those products into sustainable drivers of growth. 

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One of the conditions of a Team is continuous coaching. This is to enable the team to become high-performing and well functioning. Without putting time and effort into team coaching it is very hard to become high-performing as a team, and most teams need experts to support in the beginning to move beyond friction and into the phase of the structure.

The 5 Stages of a Team

1. Inclusion

The team meets and learns about the work that needs to be done and what’s expected of them. Members avoid disagreement because they fear rejection at this stage, making the leader a central role providing
direction. There is a desire for order, roles, and structure.

The need of the team: All team members understand the purpose of the team and want to be part of it. Team members know and accept each other and feel accepted as a member of the team.

The leaders role: Provide structure. Make sure everyone is included. Initiate open discussions of values & goals.

Common leadership pitfalls: Analysis paralysis / Not daring to make decisions. Thinking the leader need to have all answers.


2. Friction

The team starts challenging the defined boundaries, such as process and working agreements and voice differences in individual working styles and behaviors. Team members challenge each other. Some question the team’s goals altogether. Typically, this will be a challenging phase.

The need of the team: Understanding of each other’s behavioral style and intention. Improved ability to resolve disagreement effectively. 

The leaders role: Support, coach & train the team in how to keep an open dialogue. Help solve conflicts. Build trust.

Common leadership pitfalls: Picking on individuals – stay focused on ideas, not personalities. A leader that’s unwilling to compromise. A belief that the team needs conflict to advance from this stage – allow disagreement but don’t foster conflict.


3. Structure

The team has the ability to resolve disagreement and integrates their personal differences. They revisit goals and objectives and redefine structures, working agreements, roles, and processes to support them.

The need of the team: Time to work out structures within the team such as processes, goals, roles, and working agreements. Everyone feels that issues regarding ways of working that are important to them have been discussed.

The leaders role: Act as consultants when needed. Support by removing impediments outside of the team.

Common leadership pitfalls: Not taking the time to make sure everyone’s perspective is represented. Trying to get everyone to conform to the same values. Trying to find the perfect solution.


4. Performing

The team have agreement on goals and objectives and work towards them together. The team is competent in decision making and conflict resolution with minimal or no supervision. The team rapidly gains important knowledge through knowledge sharing – there’s no information hoarding. Relationships and results are equally important.

The need of the team: The team is self-managed and continuously evaluate their own performance.

The leaders role: Share responsibilities with the team. Reward initiative. Coach & facilitate individual development.

Leadership pitfalls: Expecting to not have to further improve and still maintaining high performance.

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Creating a new organization from an old one is a lot about detangling and understanding what belongs where. If you have done it before, you might be able to see patterns that are helpful. Using visualization and working in a structured way, step by step, and involving the people in it are some helpful ways of working.

Just as always in the complex domain, you are better off not using good practices (the same solution as others). By going by it in an experimental way, step by step, you can more safely find good solutions based on design principles and patterns.

When thinking of it you might realize that it actually is pretty similar to building great products that customers love – based on a legacy system. So why not use similar ways of working?

When are starting out we need to see what we currently have, and even that is a complex endeavor. To get that shared picture of the current organization you can use different techniques, and usually, a good mix is needed. In this post, we will look into how you can map up current teams, products, and customer journey, and the state of the systems and start to see what teams might take ownership over what is a step-by-step approach.

Products and Services

As a start, you can start together to map up the products that your customers pay for. Those are what we commonly call products in an Agile organization. This is where some money is exchanged, and if it is on a monthly basis, it might then be a service.

Below you see an example of the overall products and services mapped out, for both B2B and B2C. There is no need to make this any fancier than this. If you might understand later that you actually have some more products, you can easily add them then if you create a scalable system.

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The retrospective is the improvement engine in the Agile team. It gives the team a structured way to inspect and adapt, making continuous improvements in their processes and ways of working. It is often done once every sprint when working in Scrum, or every second week when working in Kanban. But it could also be held at the end of a bigger project with everyone involved, or once every quarter across all Agile teams and stakeholders depending on what you want to improve. The purpose is to uncover what is working well that you should do more of, and what could be improved next to make the team even better. That is why it is the by far the most important ceremony and should be guarded and never down-prioritized.

In the retrospective, the team focuses on what worked well and what could be improved during the last sprint. There are many different ways to facilitate a retrospective and if you search for “Agile Retrospective” you get more than 2 000 000 results. 

It is traditionally the Scrum Master who is responsible for improving the team’s process and creating a well-functioning and high-performing team, and thereby to facilitate the retrospective. A skilled Scrum Master can pick the right type of retrospective depending on the maturity of the team and whatever issues the team has to deal with at the moment, making sure all voices are heard and facilitating it in a way that enables the team to come up with the improvements and actions needed to make adjustments and experiments in the next sprint.

Usually a retrospective for a 2 week sprint is a 1-2 hour workshop. If you are conducting a big retrospective for many teams or for a longer period of time, you might want to add more time – and also do some more preparations beforehand, but a common sprint retrospective is usually covered in 1-2 hours with no more preparations than for the Scrum Master to plan the facilitation and invite all participants.

The 5 phases of a retrospective

Retrospectives are usually built up by five phases, with different flavors of facilitation:

  1. Setting the stage
  2. Collecting and mapping data
  3. Prioritization 
  4. Ideating and coming up with what actions to take
  5. Closing the retrospective

Make sure to make space for the improvement work in the team’s daily work

The actions from the sprint should be taken, or started, during the next sprint. And it is up to the team to decide who will do what, just like any other task on the sprint board, it is not the Scrum Master’s job to implement the improvements. 

The best way to make this happen is usually to put each action in a story and to put it up on the Scrum or Kanban board along with the rest of the work- these are improvement stories that should be in every sprint. If some of the problems are impossible for the team to solve by themselves, the action should be brought to someone who can help. Some teams have a so-called “Scrum of Scrum” where all Scrum Masters meet up regularly to share their improvement areas and the actions that they need support with, or you could use a “Management Action Door”, where all teams put up actions that they need help with and meet up with people who can help on a regular basis to make it happen. You can probably figure out more ways to make it happen, what is important is that the environment for the team can be improved also with support from outside their own possible mandates and capabilities.

Tip:

If your team has a working agreement you ask them to bring it to the retrospectives, to reflect on how well they are following it and if it is helping the team to work well together. If your team doesn’t have one, spend 15-20 minutes on your first retrospective to create it.

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For good or bad, the pandemic, has transformed the way teams work around the world. Only a fraction of organizations has all employees back at their offices, while the biggest part is either having employees back in the office a few days a week or having them work remotely 100%. Some have even decided to expand their recruitment abroad. The positive side is that we are now more used to remote working and we have a broader toolbox to make us feel closer despite the distance. But on the flip side, we now have to face a new set of challenges both from the long-term remote working and the mix of onsite and remote work… How can we get the same ownership, engagement, team bonding, and awareness while working from our bedrooms or maybe from the other side of the globe?

The purpose of this poster is to create more awareness of those challenges and enable some reflections in the form of simple tips to try. After all, there is no solution that fits all and the effects are very different from team to team or company to company.

Download the Hybrid Agile Teams Poster for Free Here (PDF) >

French: Download the poster for free here >

What is a Hybrid Team?

Hybrid Teams are those teams that are either fully remote team, or that work sometimes in the same office and sometimes remotely. It is very important to separate the “types” of those hybrid teams because they have different characteristics and their setup creates different needs and challenges.

Distributed sub-teams are those where we have people working in different offices, say for example a team that is divided between 2 locations, like half the team in Sweden and the other half in Germany. This is challenging for team growth as the team will naturally split into sub-teams and might never feel like one entity. It is important to focus on team-building activities and even sharing working work across sub-teams.

Partially dispersed teams are those where the main team is working from the same location but perhaps one or two people are working from some where else. This is not the best setup as it can make those people feel as if they are outsiders, and the level of inclusion will drastically reduce. In this case, it is important to balance the participation and contribution of everybody to make sure that even those joining remotely can feel part of the team.

Fully dispersed teams are those teams with people joining from different locations. Even if it might seem the most challenging setup, this is actually better than the others types of hybrid teams when it comes to team development and team dynamics, because everybody is sharing the same situation. It is, of course, challenging to create that deep trust and deep bonding as the members do not have usually many chances to meet us.

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The User Story Map is a simple and yet powerful way to visualize the story about how the users are using your product or service – and to build the right thing.

It is simple because it offers support to move quickly from understanding the user and their problems – to building and shipping the product, and it can be done just with sticky notes on a wall, or in simple digital tools.

It is powerful because it tells a story, it gives context to the user story and it gives a clear overview of the backlog and what we need to build to be able to support the user scenarios over all relevant touchpoints. It also supports collaboration and both horizontal and vertical slicing.

I am forever thankful to Jeff Patton who is the creator of User Story Mapping and from who I learned it from about 13 years ago or so. Without it I don’t know where I would have been today. It has been one of the most valuable methods for me to enable deliveries of great user experiences although in very complex domains, real deadlines (like sports events that happens when it happens) with one or up to +20 teams 🙏

It is a living, transparent, and value-based backlog that support the Product Owners and teams to find thin slices to release that create real value based on user scenarios, and not features. If you are looking to become a value and product-driven organization, this tool offers a lot of support.

It might not come as a shock to you that the User Story Map is the most common tool used for Agile product planning with one or several teams.  Jeff Patton invented it and brought it in as a major part of the CSPO (Certified Product Owner) training when he first created that many years ago for Scrum Alliance.  Jeff Patton, with a background in UX and design, has been a great force in Agilizing customer-centric ways of working and finding ways to connect it in a natural way to Scrum and product teams.

User Story Map Concepts

A user story map tells a story about a type of person doing something to reach a goal. Make sure to include them in your map along with a little information about them. Try using lightweight personas or roles to describe your users.

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As we explored in our previous post, people driving innovation and creativity think and work differently. Research has shown that within Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) industries, there’s a higher than chance representation of autistic people and people with elevated autistic traits, or what Cambridge researchers call “systems thinking minds”.

Orienting themselves to concrete facts instead of context, they analyze information from the physical senses using objective logic and prefer evidenced-based approaches. Such individuals can be easily misinterpreted as “arrogant”, “aloof”, or “not a team player”, which often runs counter to the common notions of what makes a good employee… and can set them up to fail.

These differences need to be destigmatized and normalized because neurodiversity is the new normal

Below are actionable strategies that you can take to help to unleash the brainpower of your neurodiverse talent and overcome the misinterpretations, assumptions, and differences that often sabotage their careers. They’ll help you to ensure high performance with a big heart.

You’ll find the strategies organized according to the three implicit expectations I shared in my past post along with real-life examples: the Mind Reading expectation, the Focus Fallacy, and Seeing the Forest for the Trees. The strategies shared were written in partnership with someone who is on the spectrum so are expressed from that perspective.

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Are you a well-functioning Agile team?

These questions can give you an idea of what a well-functioning Agile team looks and feels like. If you are a newly formed team you can see the questions as a benchmark for the future and continue to revisit them as a team, as your Agility grows.

These questions can be discussed and answered in combination with the Team Maturity questions.

Why self-evaluation matters

There is a reason teams should evaluate themselves, and not be evaluated. If the team takes responsibility for their own progress and improvement, they also take ownership of evaluating their own performance. If someone else would use their data to compare teams across the organization, or to perhaps set salaries, then it would not be a safe place anymore and people and teams would not dare to show any flaws, and improvement would, therefore, be impossible.

Download and Print the Self Evaluation Sheet (PDF)

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Welcome to a 4-Part series on FLOW!
This post is an introduction along with key reflections.

What is Flow

“Flow” refers to the flow of customer value through an organization, from customer request to value delivery. It’s the work flowing through the Product Development process through market release and beyond.  

Why Flow Matters

Flow is the secret sauce for delivering maximum value to users in the shortest possible time.  By optimizing flow, you’ll be able to take control of your workflow and more quickly (and continuously) adapt your product strategy and development processes. The right solutions and Ways-of-Working will be identified faster because feedback loops will become shorter. 

Focusing on flow sets you free to manage the system, not the people. Instead of managing people and optimizing for business and resource efficiency, you can focus on managing and optimizing flow. This is a powerful way to “Manage the System and not the People”. You will be free to co-create an organizational context where all aspects of the work can move together in a way that balances both flow and resources.

How Agile Leaders Optimize Flow

Agile leaders optimize flow through iterative and incremental organizational change. They use Lean Agile practices to put into place structures, processes, and ways-of-working that will ensure the flow is as smooth as possible without disrupting other organizational activities. Their goal is to reach the optimal flow efficiency and delivery of value with minimal waste. 

Agile leaders make it safe and economic to work in small batches. They move away from large batches of work delivered in projects and move towards small batches of work delivered continuously. The result is shorter lead times, higher quality, lower risk, and lower costs. 

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A CEO once said that he did not ever again want to see the company miss a chance with the customers just because the marketing department did not have the budget to market a new product that emerged from customer feedback. Having everyone aligned around the customer, working cross-functionally, and being able to shift focus as ONE organization to join in the dance is becoming a competitive advantage.

Traditional budgeting and financial steering do not work well with Agile Ways of Working and it does not support the strategic flexibility that we often need in today’s VUCA-world. Based on the Beyond Budgeting principles and inspired by the practices more dynamic ways of handling the financial side of the business have started to emerge that in a better way enables agility in the organization. 

Getting started by separating the processes

 When moving from traditional budgeting to dynamic budgeting, most organizations start with separating the budgeting process into three different parts: target, resource allocation, and prognosis. The reason for this is that they are all different numbers, and we need to be able to optimize each process to become more dynamic.

Separation like this enables us to start to elaborate and improve each of these different parts. We always want to make sure to make our processes event-driven – and not calendar-driven.

Impact Goal

We want to make it:

Instead of fixed goals, we set impact goals that enable us to look for different solutions and work outcome-based instead of output-based. 

  • Inspiring and brave
  • VUCA robust
  • Objective – expected impact
  • Not in detail, hypothesis are good

Here we can start to experiment with different ways of working with goals. Some organizations try and like Objective and Key Results, OKRs, others might like Compay Bets and Team Missions better, and some might find their own way based on the principles (see more in the Agile Management part about this).

There are no one-size-fits-all, but rather you have to look at the context, culture, and nature of the business to see what fits and dare to experiment and try different ways of improving both autonomy and alignment. The ultimate goal should probably be that we do the right things and that we can change the plan in a good way based on new insights.

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När vi som agila coacher blir tillfrågade om hur vi jobbar, blir det lätt en berättelse om vad vi gör på dagarna. Då blir det fokus på aktiviteter och metoder, men det är ju inte kärnan av det vi vill uppnå. Sedan pratar vi om det agila mindsetet och dess principer, men det blir inte så begripligt det heller. För hur jobbar vi egentligen? Så nu när vi, Bodil och Cecilia,  jobbat tillsammans i nästan ett år så satte vi oss ner för att beskriva hur och varför vi egentligen gör som vi gör. Vi hoppas det kan inspirera er! 

Bild 1: Önskat läge

Vårt önskade läge, bild 1, utgår från att lyssnaren ska få den bästa upplevelsen. Syftet med teknik- och utvecklingsverksamheten är att ta fram bästa möjliga produkter för lyssnare och användare. Det är teamen som gör arbetet. Vi vill därför ge varje team de bästa förutsättningarna och sätter dem i centrum. Scrum master och produktägare finns där för att stödja teamen och bevaka deras och produktens gemensamma intressen.

Eftersom det är flera och komplexa produkter i en föränderlig värld räcker det inte med ett team utan det behövs många team som också kommer ha beroenden till varandra. Så långt som möjligt ska de vara självgående och kunna arbeta oberoende av varandra. Oftast  behöver vi acceptera vissa beroenden som inte går att komma undan. 

Som en bas och stöd, har vi ledningen. Ledningen skapar förutsättningar för teamen så att de kan koncentrera sig på produkterna, dess utveckling och kontakten mot användare. 

Ledningen identifierar och tydliggör det långsiktiga perspektivet i form av mål, vision och strategi. Det skapar tydlighet och lugn i prioriteringar och kontinuerliga förändringar som behöver göras. Ledningen ansvarar även för att vi håller oss till lagar och förordningar samt har arbetsgivaransvar och ekonomiska ansvaret. I ett önskat läge är det här frågor som kontinuerligt justeras och kommuniceras för att skapa förutsägbarhet i organisationen och därmed inte påverkar teamens kapacitet nämnvärt.

Det här är optimerat utifrån att teamen skall få de bästa förutsättningarna för att kunna koncentrera sig på att utveckla de bästa produkterna för användarna. 

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At Dandy People we love to share our work with others, it is a part of our DNA.

Therefore, this years Advent Calendar is about sharing one of the things that have made us stand out, what most people recognizes us for, our beloved agile illustrations. As part of the many popular posters we have created through out the years, downloaded by hundreds of thousands from all around the world, these illustrations are an important part of our brand and our culture.

We are giving you the chance to download a new illustration every day for the whole of December as we are opening up our Agile Illustration Bank. You can use and share these illustrations as you please, in your presentations or as part of your work, for free under the Creative Commons license.

We hope you will enjoy them as much as we have enjoyed creating them. Keep your eyes open on our social media channels on December 1 for the first illustration.

Lets make this a shareful Christmas! 


December 1

Download illustration

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We’ve all heard of Agile Leadership. But what about Agile Management? It turns out that they’re both distinct yet intimately related. Let’s explore this interesting and relevant topic!

Agile leadership is a transformative, development-oriented leadership style that creates the conditions required for unleashing knowledge, motivation, initiative, and collaboration across any organization.

Agile management is a natural part of Agile leadership that manages the system, not the people. “Manage the system, not the people” means creating an organizational context (structures and systems) that support both autonomy and alignment so teams can deliver value at a high pace and work together with other teams in order to optimize the business outcome of an entire organization.

Agile Leaders naturally manage the system by adjusting their style according to their context and choosing organizational structures that will support alignment and autonomy.

  • They recognized that teams operate in a larger context and that structures and systems within a given context (such as rewards and information flow and quality) can either promote great teamwork or create obstacles to excellent collaboration. 
  • They align organizational structures with business strategies and goals in ways that support well-functioning and high performing teams that are able to innovate, solve complex problems, and deliver at a high pace. 
  • They focus on empowering networks of teams and developing capabilities so the emphasis is no longer on the skills, characteristics, and traits of a single, all-powerful person with the designation of “leader” or “manager”. Both leadership and management has evolved to be collective endeavors that leads to the betterment of all involved and looks different depending on the context.

When Agile leaders have strong management skills, they become known for influential attributes such as:

  • Initiative
  • Mindful forethought
  • Situational awareness
  • Willingness to grant autonomy 
  • Willingness to grant responsibility 
  • Ability to demonstrate flexibility 
  • Ability to build trust

The Agile Management Flower

In Agile organizations, each leader is responsible for managing one domain, either people, product, technology, or process. This type of cross-functional Agile Leadership Team works together on moving the organization forward while working within each area supporting their people at operational and tactical as well as strategic level.  

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Innovation is your top competitive advantage. What are you doing to support your innovative tech talent? It starts with recognizing that innovators and problem solvers are wired to think differently and work differently. 

Imagine you’re lost in a foreign city and don’t know the language or customs. And to make matters worse, you lost your cell phone. Disconcerting, right? This is what the workplace is like for technical and creative people who think differently. A lot of time and energy is spent being lost due to issues which affect everyone, especially the neurodiverse, instead of being productive and innovating.

For example, research has shown that there’s a higher than chance representation of autistic people and people with elevated autistic traits in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) industries. They’re wired to spot complex patterns and relationships, focus on details, and work independently. They also possess strong logic and analytical skills. Orienting themselves to concrete facts instead of context, they analyze information from the physical senses using objective logic and prefer evidenced-based approaches. 

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Agile Product Management

Why do we need Agile Product Management you might think? The main reason is to ensure we are building the right thing. Having both customer focus, and understanding what the priorities are for the business is crucial for most product organizations to survive in a highly competitive market.

When delivering software, digital services, and products in traditional ways we often end up acting on every idea and need we can think of beforehand, without actually knowing if the needs are real and if the solutions would actually help the customer to solve a real problem.

Only half of what we build is being used!

Research shows that most digital solutions are poorly prioritized, where only 20% of the features are being used always or often and 16% sometimes, the rest is just clogging the user interface making it difficult to use, and the user experience terribly ineffective. On top of that, it costs a lot of money not just to build, but also to maintain that 100%. What if we could instead deliver only those 20% or 36%, and in the right order pleasing our users and giving us feedback on how it is being used? This is what good product management is about.

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Agile HR is an approach to HR that prioritizes speed, responsiveness, flexibility, and collaboration. As discussed in depth in our free Agile HR Dandy People poster, Agile HR has two facets that are both critical for achieving Organizational Agility: 

  1. Agile for HR – Applying the Agile mindset and evidence-based tools within HR teams and projects
  2. HR for Agile – Evolving people practices to support Agile teams and organizational transformation

Agile for HR

Changes in our environment, legislation, and technologies have outpaced HR’s ability to keep up in many organizations. As a result, HR often feels caught in the weeds of compliance and administration. Many HR practitioners are recognizing the need for new methods and ways for delivering value to the organization are increasingly turning to more Agile ways of working. The result is an HR team that co-creates directly with the internal and external customers to build a great place to work.

HR for Agile

Building an Agile organization requires that HR redesigns people practices in a way that’s congruent to Agile’s more networked, team-based, customer-focused operating model. Traditional HR often paces itself according to annual cycles where individual performance is optimized and rewarded irrespective of impact or outcome, and this needs to change. 

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“Imagine an organization that’s a fluid network of teams collaborating towards a common goal of delighting customers, where communication flows easily in all directions, and ideas can come from anywhere. What would that be like?”

The question above is an example of what’s known as a framing question. Such questions have many answers that helps to scope and clarify a problem just enough to move the conversation in a positive direction. Given that an organization’s ability to respond rapidly to market changes and emerging opportunities is determined through a series of day-to-day conversations, framing questions can serve as a valuable tool for Agile leaders wanting to achieve business agility.

Ed Morrison from Purdue University spent decades researching and implementing agility models in the social sector based on the transformational power of day-to-day conversations. He observed that every conversation is in response to some question, whether that question is asked explicitly or not, and choosing the right question makes an enormous difference to whether or not agility is achieved.

  • Problem centered questions bog groups down into analysis, where members become paralyzed by the mistaken belief that there is one problem to solve
  • Opportunity-centered questions emotionally engage people, where members see a complex problem to solve with many possibilities

The goal is to use questions to frame conversations so that the people are inspired to work together in new ways.

Questions that inspire and engage are called Framing Questions. Framing questions address potential opportunities and are surprising, rather than obsessing over known or hidden deficits. They frame what the collective wants more of rather than problems to overcome.

The framing questions force us to look at reality a little differently and are often used in Design Thinking and other Innovation models. As Ed Morrison points out, “a good framing question is complex enough that it will require the deeper thinking and engagement of each person in the conversation”.  The most powerful framing questions tap into the collective intelligence of the whole and thereby mobilize organizational brainpower to achieve lasting business agility.  

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This is the rules page for the Dandy People agile board game, Agile WoW the Game, in proper board game format. This page will always be updated with the latest rules.

Introduction

Join an agile team and work and learn together to complete the work you’ve committed to!

Setup the game

  1. Place the board in the middle of the table
  2. Sort the Daily Events in two piles, one for Week I and one for Week II
    • Shuffle each pile separately
    • Place one Daily Event upside down on each corresponding spot on the board
  3. Place all Story cards face up in numerical order in the Sprint Backlog column
  4. Place all Task cards face up for each story in the To Do column
  5. Place one Continuous Improvement card face up on each spot on the board
  6. Place all grey Work unit cubes in their area on the board
  7. Place all red/blue/yellow/purple Skill cubes in their area on the board
  8. Hand out all Player boards and the corresponding Team member token to the players.
    Players can have multiple player boards or share player boards depending on the number of players

Objective

Work together to get all tasks from To do to Done using continuous improvements and knowledge sharing wisely to tackle hurdles in your way. Because just like in reality. Things will happen along the way 🙂

Overview

The game is played over 10 rounds, each round a day of work. Each round starts with a daily event affecting the team. Then all players simultaneously decide whether to work on a task, knowledge sharing, or continuous improvements.

How to play

Each round has 5 steps:

1. Daily event

Flip the next daily event hexagon.
Follow the instructions on the back. The effect is only for the current day unless stated otherwise.

Tip! If the event results in someone not being able to work this round, put that player token on the event during that round to not forget.

2. Get to work

For each team member: Decide what to work on and put your team member token there (discussion encouraged!) You have 4 options.

A. Work on a task in the Doing column. Move a Task from To Do to Doing if needed.

  • You must work from left to right on the task.
  • You must have the skill of the next available box on the task.

B. Learn from an expert by putting your token under an expert working (the player with the color of the skill is the expert). In this case, only one day’s work will be achieved, not two. This is due to learning.

C. Review a task in the Review column. You don’t need any specific skill to review a Task and it always take one day for one team member to review a task.

D. Work on continuous improvements by putting your team member token on a continuous improvement. When the Continuous improvement is completed its effect is active from the next turn. You are now a more efficient team. Congratulations!

3. Resolve the day’s work

For each Team member, do one of the following:

  • Did you work to complete a box on a task? Put a grey cube in the box
  • Did you work together with someone? Put a skill cube of the skill you learned on your player board
  • Did you review a task? Move it to Done
  • Did you work on a continuous improvement? Put a grey cube in the next white box on it. If you have filled the last box the continuous improvement rules are active from the next turn on

4. Go home for some well-earned rest

  1. Move your Team member token to your player board.
  2. Move all finished Tasks in To do (ie it has work unit cubes in all boxes) to Review

5. Start the next day

Repeat until you have played 10 rounds. Good luck!

How did we do?

Take 5 minutes to do this retrospective exercise together in your gaming team.

  • What went well during the sprint? How can you do more of that?
  • What did not go so well during the sprint? How can you improve on that?
  • What did you learn?

Still have questions?

Let us know in the comments below and we’ll update the instructions!

Want to buy your own game, or play it online?

Here you can read about the online version of this Agile board game >

Here you find the board game for sale in our shop >

Download these instructions in PDF

Click here

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Det här är en rolig och lätt workshop att hålla i härligt pirat-tema. Och vem älskar inte pirater? Yo ho ho!

Den här workshopen har jag faciliterat ett flertal gånger och alltid med positiv framåtanda, samsyn kring vad uppdraget är och lite rolig teambuilding där alla delar med sig lite om vilka de är. Du kan hålla workshopen i rummet på en whiteboard, eller använda den här digitala varianten i Mural.

Workshopen lämpar sig för Chefer, Produktägare, Scrum Masters eller tex produktteam.

Jag har skrivit instruktionerna här utifrån att du kanske inte tidigare har faciliterat så mycket, eller kanske inte har använd Mural. Min förhoppning är att fler ska våga sig på att prova och hålla riktigt bra, roliga och engagerande workshops även digitalt. Så hoppas att du vill testa 🙂

Workshopen är uppdelad i en första del där deltagarna delas upp i mindre breakout rooms (grupper), och en gemensam del där man delar med sig av resultatet och hittar vägen fram tillsammans.

Här nedan går jag igenom de olika stegen som finns i Muralen. Väl inne i Muralen finns innehållet och stegen vilket gör att det är lätt för dig att facilitera den utifrån mallen.

Här hittar du mallen i Mural >

Facilitator Super Powers i Mural

Som facilitator i Mural har du “facilitation super powers”. Dessa ska du använda för att skapa en bra facilitering för gruppen och se till att allas röst får höras och att de kommer fram till ett resultat tillsammans – och håller tiden. Här går jag igenom några av dom som du hittar i toppen av fänstret i din webbläsare när du är inne i Mural och du har fått rollen som facilitator.

Från vänster till höger så har du som facilitator:

  • Dot voting. Om gruppen ska rösta om ngt så slår du på den och bestämmer hur många röster alla har individuellt. När alla är klara visar du automagiskt resultatet.
  • Private mode. Det här är en smart funktion om folk jobbar individuellt. Då ser man inte varandras lappar vilket gör att alla har lättare att bidra och fokuserad och gruppen kommer fram till bättre resultat. Om du vill använda den i den här workshopen så kanske en i varje grupp ska lägga in lapparna och dela sin skärm med de andra i ert videomöte.
  • Custom toolbar. Här väljer du vilka verktyg deltagarna ska se till vänster i Mural vilket kan förenkla för dom att hitta och välja rätt funktioner under workshopen.
  • Laser pointer. Som det låter. En laserpekare som du kan använda för att guida deltagarna i var de ska titta.
  • Timer. Och sist i raden hittar du timern som du använder för att tids-boxa olika aktiviteter och hjälpa deltagarna att hålla tiden. Timern plingar när tiden går ut så att alla som är med inne i Mural hör det, och den syns också för alla. Detta är en jättebra funktion för att se till att alla grupper och individer inte fastnar i långa ofruktsamma diskussioner, och att de levererar värde som grupp.
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Det är inte alltid lätt att nå fram till alla människor i en organisation, speciellt inte vid förändringar och när man måste kommunicera och samarbeta tvärs över alla delar så som man ofta gör under en agil transformation. Det är dock avgörande att man klarar av det för ett lyckat resultat. Jag tänkte berätta lite om hur vi försöker göra det på Dandy People och vilka verktyg vi tycker är hjälpsamma.

Vad handlar agila transformationer om?

När vi jobbar med agila transformationer så handlar det om – för ca 90% av människorna – en total omorganisering av sin latenta tankemässiga referensram. Den mentala bilden av hur saker och ting fungerar behöver förändras baserat på nya förhållanden, ny kunskap och nya principer. Hur du ser på världen – kan man enkelt säga. Det krävs “nya glasögon” att se på världen med i många fall – för att ta bort tidigare inlärda beteenden och begränsningar för vad som är värdefullt och möjligt.

För att lyckas med att nå fram till människor på ett bra sätt behöver man bli expert på vad som motiverar både oss själva som individer och förstå att alla andra INTE är som vi är, och i andra hand vad som motiverar de vi vill nå fram till. Vi har alla olika grundläggande psykologiska behov och det är olika saker som motiverar oss.

Hur vi på Dandy People jobbar för att förstå vår egen och andras motivation

Redan tidigt när Dandy People startade (före min tid) började Dandy använda en forskningsbaserad svensk metod som heter MyNeeds® för att förstå vår egen motivation och bättre lära känna varandra. Man insåg nyttan av det för att snabbt kunna skapa nya trygga team ute hos kunderna, vilket alla konsulter är i stort behov av som arbetar i team hos kund. Dandy har under årens lopp vid varje rekrytering låtit alla oss nya Dandysar göra en profil, få individuell återkoppling och dela med varandra. Det är tydligt nu, många år senare att vi också har väldigt stor nytta av den här förståelsen ute hos våra kunder. Vi kan lättare förstå vad som motiverar olika personer och grupper och vad de kan ha svårt för, och vad som gör människor otrygga eller omotiverade. Det gör oss mer trygga i att jobba med människor och grupper med olika bakgrund vilket ofta minskar onödiga missförstånd och eventuella konflikter.

Eftersom Dandy också bedriver en nätverksbaserad och självorganiserad organisation (Agil/Teal) utan chefer (vi leder oss själva och varandra kan man säga) är det också viktigt att vi, när behovet ökar, är fler som kan arbeta med MyNeeds® för att skala den här funktionen när vi växer. Därför har jag och flera intresserade kollegor certifierat oss för att kunna nyttja verktyget i vårt arbete hos kunder, och även inom Dandy People.

I och med en certifiering så får vi göra personliga återkopplingar och analys av individers personliga profil, coacha individer och grupper i att bättre bygga en tillvaro som stödjer deras behov, där de kan nyttja sina och andras perspektiv och motivation bättre. De som även tar organisations-certifieringen kan även bygga spelplaner med alla medarbetares motivation, för ett större systemperspektiv, och stötta chefer och medarbetare att se, förstå och kommunicera och agera utifrån detta i sin organisation, grupp och sitt team.

Mångfald är ett viktigt perspektiv att nyttja för de flesta organisatoner

Vi ser ett stort värde av att skapa mångfald inom organisationer där man nyttjar en mångfald av tankar. Företag vill inte ha team som har grupptänkande, det tar dem inte framåt. När vi lyckas med att skapa diversitet i teamen så möjliggörs ofta ett större flow, mer innovation och bättre resultat för organisationen. Här är MyNeeds® ett ypperligt verktyg att nyttja för att titta på spelplanen hur det ser ut just nu och nyttja de olika psykologiska behoven och perspektiven i skapandet av nya team på ett medvetet sätt. Företag som arbetar aktivt med motivation har 20% högre lönsamhet, 40% lägre frånvaro och 70% färre tillbud.

Kort bakgrund till MyNeeds®

MyNeeds® bygger på den senaste forskningen kring motivation, vilket är väldigt viktigt för oss på Dandy People. Edward L. Deci och Richard M. Ryan är två forskare som undersökt hur motivation fungerar och har gjort forskningen utifrån Self Determination Theory – SDT i över 30 år . SDT består av tre psykologiska behov som är underliggande mekanismer för att känna motivation. Dessa är tillhörighet, kompetens och autonomi – vilka vi också ofta berör och pratar om i det vi gör i våra agila transformationer.

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Listen to Dmytro Yarmak as he shares his story about how he became an officer in the Ukrainian Army, leading 150 men, and how he has taking on that role and huge responsibility.

By using Agile principles and ways of working he has managed to move from being reactive as a leader, to proactive. Dmytro has been able to build an amazing culture of autonomy, responsibility and humanity as well as building up skills for people new to war and survival (as almost all were).

It is a really strong story about chaos, bravery, humanity and leadership in extreme VUCA that he shares. A big thank you to our hero Dmytro Yarmak for sharing this with us live from the war ❤️ and even making us smile and laugh (!!) ☺️ What an humbling experience for all of us 🙏

Please consider donating to support the Ukrainian Army in the war against Russia:

https://bank.gov.ua/ua/news/all/natsionalniy-bank-vidkriv-spetsrahunok-dlya-zboru-koshtiv-na-potrebi-armiyi for donations to the army.

https://prytulafoundation.org/en for helping the volonteers organization who support the army with drone and other important materials.

Also, feel free to share this video ❤️🙏

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In this episode our founder Mia Kolmodin talks to Dmytro Yarmak. Listen to him tell the story of transitioning from an Agile Coach to an officer in the UA army and how he applies the same fundamentals and methods in his new role.

Dmytro describes how guiding principles like providing clarity and information, creating psychological safe environments in the teams, raising the right competencies and the ability to delegate, the ukranian army has learned to innovate and find new ways forward in this difficult and demanding situation.

Dmytro will also host a live seminar on October 5th where he will share more about his story.

Sign up here
Free Webinar – How an Agile Coach Applies Leadership as an Officer in UA Army

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I detta avsnitt av Dandy Conversations pratar jag med Staffan Nöteberg som berätta om sina böcker, vad Monostasking är och hur du kan använda det i ditt dagliga arbete för bättre kontroll över det du vill göra och öka ditt fokus på dagens uppgifter.

Hör honom också berätta kort om den gratis frukostföreläsning han kommer hålla hos oss den 22 september i Stockholm. Är du intresserad av att bli mer produktiv och mer stressfri vardag så ska du definitivt komma på föreläsningen.

Anmäl dig här:

Gratis Frukostföreläsning – Monotasking – Från prokrastinering till produktivitet

Se också våra kommande utbildningar i Monotasking:

Monotasking – Från prokrastinering till produktivitet / 1 dag På plats – Stockholm 25 Oktober

Monotasking – From procrastination to productivity / 2 Halfdays Online in English – 15 & 17 November

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In this episode of Dandy Conversations our founder and CEO Mia Kolmodin met up with the Trainer and Facilitator of LEGO Serious Play Per Kristiansen to talk about serious games (or serious play as they call it at Lego) that we love using as a safe way for exploring complex strategy and play out different scenarios.

Per tells the story how it all got started at LEGO when their CEO needed a better way to work with strategy and they created Lego Serious Play. Per was part of the internal research team that discovered that using lego bricks for simulation and learning was just as useful for adults as it is for children. He tells a fascinating story of how they first failed, but later discovered how to make it work and developed it to the metod that it is today, and how it has now expanded from being an internal method within Lego to a global phenomena that it is today.

If you are interested in learning how to facilitate the Lego Serious Play Method Per travels all around the world to facilitate Lego Serious Play trainings and we are really happy to welcome him to Dandy People and Stockholm soon again.

Check out our upcoming training with Lego Serious Play:

Foundation Training in design and facilitating workshops with the LEGO® SERIOUS PLAY® methodology (New dates to come)

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In this episode of Dandy Conversations our founder and CEO Mia Kolmodin met up with the founder and CEO of Adventures with Agile (AWA) Simon Powers to talk about the values and purposes that drives their companies. It is a close and warm conversation about changing mindsets, making people flourish and become their best and how we can support our customers to meet their goals and visions.

Check out our upcoming trainings with AWA:

Agile Team Coach, Certification (ICP-ACC) – Online (Several dates)

Agile Team Facilitator (ICP-ATF) – Online (Several dates)

Enterprise Agile Coach Bootcamp with Certifications (ICP-ENT & ICP-CAT) 7-11 November, Stockholm

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We are so happy to be able to share the Monotasking in a Nutshell Poster with you for free also in Turkish! Thank you so much Ender Yüksel for your awesome work with the translation 🙂

DOWNLOAD IT FOR FREE: Here you can download it for free in high resolution >

monotasking poster TURKISH

Free to download, use and share

The posters is published under Creative Commons License, so please use it and share it as you like. If you are interested in doing a translation to any other languages please let me know and I will help you with the file and publish it here in the blog as well.

You are free to:

Share — copy and redistribute the material in any medium or format
Adapt — remix, transform, and build upon the material for any purpose, even commercially.
This license is acceptable for Free Cultural Works.
The licensor cannot revoke these freedoms as long as you follow the license terms.

Under the following terms:

Attribution — You must give appropriate credit, provide a link to the license, and indicate if changes were made. You may do so in any reasonable manner, but not in any way that suggests the licensor endorses you or your use.
ShareAlike — If you remix, transform, or build upon the material, you must distribute your contributions under the same license as the original.
No additional restrictions — You may not apply legal terms or technological measures that legally restrict others from doing anything the license permits.

Here you find all the other Free Agile in a Nutshell-posters in the series that are now translated to 14 languages and downloaded over 70.000 times world wide

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Technology is an enabler and accelerator for today’s modern product organizations. Companies and organizations often rally around agile working methods and creating effective teams. At the same time, the technology is paradoxically forgotten or taken for granted. It is often when technology poses an obstacle or when the technical debt has grown above the surface that technology issues come up on the agenda.

So the question is, how can we bring in technology development as an equally obvious part of product development? How do we ensure that features and technical enablers mutually contribute to great products? How do we ensure that the technology together with agile working methods solves bottlenecks and enables value flow?

This is where the poster Agile Architecture in a Nutshell comes in.

Download the poster as a High-Res PDF here

Buy a printed A1 version here


The poster is intended as a cheat sheet of condensed wisdom based on experience from digital product organizations. It can be printed and set up in the corridor and be a support in the dialogue between PM, PO, agile coaches, scrum masters, architects, tech leads and developers.

The poster helps to have a dialogue about complex questions such as: What is agile architecture and what is it good for, how do we accomplish technical transition through continuous improvements, how do we take bigger technical leaps, what can we do instead of reorganizing, how should we think when layering the architecture, what is the architect’s role in the DevOps journey, how do you achieve governance in an agile way, how do you get the teams to build in the right way, how should we visualize the architecture, what competence requirements should are important when we hire an architect, what tools does an architect need etc.

Solutions to questions like these differ, of course, depending on the company, industry, history and current challenges. But the poster can be used as a guide in the discussion with engaging illustrations, models and concepts that contribute to the dialogue. All to contribute to working agile with the architecture, which in turn contributes to even more awesome products reaching the market faster.

What is Agile Architecture?

There are plenty of definitions of architecture. There are also plenty of theoretical discussions when architects discuss. At the same time as the architectural work is something very concrete – a work of removing obstacles and creating new opportunities with the help of technology. An attempt to define agile architecture is therefore: “flexible structure that is created just in time to enable value flow”.

It may be wishful thinking, but what is needed is a “flexible structure” that helps the teams today and tomorrow, where it is easy to adapt the architecture to new product requirements, new forms of collaboration and to add new or remove old technology. It leads the thought to loosely coupled architecture that is layered, component-based or broken down into microservices.

“That is created just in time” where long-term and intentional design is balanced with emergent architecture. If the architecture is planned too far in advance, plans and target architectures are out of date before they are used, and vice versa, if the architecture is not planned in advance, the teams create hacks and workarounds. It’s about putting your ear to the rail and finding a sweet spot between the two. Something that must take place in close collaboration with product owners, flow managers and teams.

Architect to enable Value flow

Architecture is fundamentally about continuously creating and improving the flow of value to the customer through products using technology.

Central to achieving this is a constant tug-of-war between the drive to create business value and counter-forces in the form of technical constraints. Business value – the ability to constantly improve time to market, eliminate bottlenecks and improve product quality through technology. Limitations in the form of technical debt and lock-ins created by Conway’s Law which, in a simplified way, means that the teams build the architecture they need, which is often an obstacle when products, teams and ways of working change.

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Den här postern skapades för att ge ett stöd för organisationer och team kring vad ett välfungerande team är. För att en organisation ska få värdet av Agil team, eller team i allmänhet, så är det bra att känna till vad som gör dom välfungerande och högpresterande.

I en Agil organisation är det teamet som levererar värde och det är i team vi organiserar oss kring värdefulla leveranser. Genom att skapa en miljö som är gynnsam för team och som möjliggör både autonomitet och alignment så kan teamen bli högpresterande och leverera värde själva – och med andra team i hög takt. Detta optimerar värdet av organisationen – och det gör att människor känner sig fantastiska.

Ladda ner postern Agila team i ett nötskal gratis

Ladda ner postern genom länken nedan, eller genom att klicka på postern. Du får då ner den i PDF-format och kan skriva ut den i vilken storlek du vill. Se villkor längst ner här på sidan.

Ladda ner postern Agila team i ett nötskal (PDF) >

Några grunder för att få retur på investeringen av Agila team

När vi pratar om Agila team så menar vi högpresterande och välfungerande team. Team som kan utforska det okända, innovera, lösa komplexa problem och som levererar i jämn, ofta hög, takt. För att bygga den här typen av team så finns det några mönster att använda sig av. Team som delar mål och behöver varandra är i sig ett mönster som enligt forskning ökar engagemang och medarbetarnöjdhet.

Några värdefulla mönster för Agila team

Tydligt syfte
Syfte ger fokus, vilket ökar takten och värde- leveransen från teamet med 100%.

Mandat
Ett tydligt mandat minimerar byråkratin, vilket ökar takten och möjlig innovation från teamet med 100%.

Små och stabila team – “Brooks Law” 
Teamstorlek spelar verkligen roll. Team på 5-7 personer som är högpresterande är 100% snabbare.

T-formade kompetenser
T-form av teammdlemmarnas kompetens ökar leveranstakten med 100%.

Medarbetarengagemang
Att vara i ett team ger en känsla av samhörighet och kontext, vilket ökar medarbetarens engagemang med 100%.

Alla tillhör ett team

Teamet är grunden i en Agil organisation och alla individer tillhör ett team (inte en grupp), även de utanför tech, IT eller utvecklingsorganisationen.

Utvecklingsteam
Utvecklar, förvaltar och levererar produkter eller tjänster till externa eller interna kunder.

Ledarskapsteam
Agerar som supporterande ledare med ett growth mindset för flera team och stöttar
teamen i att ta snabba & bra beslut själva.

Supportteam
Vissa team agerar support för andra team för att ge bästa möjliga autonomitet och inriktning.
Tex genom att utbilda, vara mentorer eller bygga stödsystem. Ofta fasas dessa ut över tid när övriga team har fått den förmågan som support teamet bidrog med.

Dessa tre typer av team är i grunden vad i stort sett alla team skulle bestå av om de var Agila, men kanske med andra namn på utveckligsteam om de levererar en annan typ av tjänst till sina kunder, tex ett vårdteam på ett sjukhem. Men mönsterna för välfungerande högpresterande Agila team är densamma.

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What do you usually say is the difference between those who succeed and those who don’t? Those who succeed always tries something new when “failing” using the learnings, and they always take smaller steps moving in their wanted direction to get to their next goal on the way.

With that in mind we designed this canvas as part of a training we created some time ago, the Dandy People Agile Power Up program. The main purpose of the improvement canvas is to give support to teams to continuously improve. What is great about it is that it works in any context, on BIG stuff or a bit smaller, and for any team or group, or individual.

During our training program that lasts over 10 weeks the participants gets to use it as an exercise in smaller groups to get familiar with how to use it and the thinking behind it, but also bring it in in to their day to day work. Many says it really helps them to focus and do real improvements step by step. Some also realize they have never really thought about change and improvement as a step by step process before and thet this canvas helped them to focus on finding the next small steps to take in the right direction, instead of trying to go big and reach that full, often too complex, goal directly.

FREE DOWNLOAD: Download the improvement canvas for free (PDF) >

The four different areas

Challenge / Current state

First you start by understanding your current situation and defining what the challenge is.This is a great thing to do together to get a shared view of how it is today and what you think could improve. Write it in the canvas.

Definition of awesome

Then you want to take a look at and define what it would look like if it was just awesome, if everything was like you would like it to be. Define it together as well and put it too into the canvas. Getting a shared picture of this is crucial for enabling you to get there together.

Next wanted state

What would a next target state look like as a step in the right direction? What would have changed then? Also look at the time frame, when would you like it to be achieved? This should then be something you can evaluate to see if you have reached this next wanted state or not – and if not come up with new next steps or experiments to do. Or if you have reached your next wanted state, is it like your definition of awesome, or do you want to continue to moe closer to it? If so, set your new next wanted state and continue once again.

First steps

What are the actions you can take to move closer to your next wanted state? Evaluate if you are moving towards your next wanted state when possible and adjust your actions if needed, and define more when needed.

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Guest Blog Post by Staffan Nöteberg

Concentrating on one task at a time increases our ability to be productive. To do so, we must be exceptional at focusing, which requires a suitable environment. We must create favorable conditions that encourage us to focus – that is, monotasking by design.

What’s the first thing you think of when someone mentions monotasking? You may think of a Stroop test. Color names such as red, blue, and green are presented in font colors that differ from the meaning of the word. For example, RED is written in green font. When the facilitator prompts you to say the color of the font (green), the brain typically reads the text: “RED.” 

6 different areas for productivity

To become great monotaskers, we must zoom out. How do we create a work environment that does not tempt the brain to switch back and forth between tasks? I considered this while conducting research for my book on monotasking and I found six different areas that set the stage for productivity:

Cut Down on Tasks to Do: Our brain makes us think that we’re unusually busy right now, but will have plenty of time in a few weeks. However, a few weeks later, our calendars are full again. This inconsistency prompts us to take on too many tasks. Furthermore, the long to-do list cries for attention and disturbs our current task.

Focus on One Task Now: It’s difficult to focus on more than one thing at a time. When we think we are multitasking, we are actually continuously task switching. Research shows that this slows us down, causes more mistakes, and makes us forget good ideas. We even get angrier.

Never Procrastinate: We know exactly which task to start with when we enter the office in the morning. But first, we have to get a cup of coffee. And why not browse the web before beginning? We also need to answer a few emails before starting that first task. And on, and on, and on.

Progress Incrementally: By slicing off small, viable deliverables from that big task, we receive feedback earlier. Then, the problem description may evolve as we learn, resulting in more valuable deliverables. Slicing in this way may seem difficult for some types of tasks. However, there are techniques to support our creativity.

Simplify Cooperation: When stakeholders, colleagues, and suppliers have the wrong expectations, they interrupt us more. Smooth collaboration is key for our productivity. Monotasking is based on an abundance mentality, transparent prioritization, and the right to change our plans when we discover that we will not achieve what we said we would.

Recharge Creative Thinking: It’s hard for us to be creative when we do not come to work as our best selves. Research shows that sleep, exercise, and eating habits affect our ability to focus, perhaps more than we like to think.

Take the next step and become more productive!

We have both a free seminar and two diffrent trainings coming up. These events are fun and engaging. We will learn about concrete methods and the research behind them. Each session includes both theory and experiential learning. The exercises we do together will lead us to new insights.

Free Breakfast Seminar (in Swedish) – Stockholm September 20


1 Full Day Training On Site (in Swedish) – Stockholm October 25


2 Half Days Training Online (in English) – November 15 & 17


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Agile transformation is an exploratory work. It’s a change that takes place step by step to constantly improve products, architecture, organization and ways of working. In addition, all parameters are interconnected and affect each other.

The most important success factor in establishing agile on a larger scale, outside a team or a release train, is C-level support to influence the entire system. By the system is meant the total system in the form of organization, technology and people. Even if agile transformation is a gradual change, it will sooner or later impact the whole company, and the executives need to be prepared to make appropriate decisions. Exploratory change can also create confusion and uncertainty among employees, which makes it extra important that decision-makers are confident and supportive. 

A C-level executive (CEO, CIO, CPO, CHRO, CFO, CMO etc) is a decision-maker, inspirer and leader of the system in its entirety, and regarded as the “real” change leader. This means that agile coaches, scrum masters, product owners and change leaders should be viewed as catalysts and enablers for change. They are the messengers and doers, based on the direction set by the executives. Managers, other decision makers and teams make decisions in line with this direction. 

Success factors for agile transformation, based on what the C-level executives should focus on

  • Create a common vision and direction
  • Communicate the change
  • Lead through others
  • Create passion and psychological safety
  • Make the necessary decisions

Create a common vision and direction

The C-level executive needs to set a vision and direction for change. What to achieve and why. This should preferably be measurable and produced in co-creation, but the C-level executive needs to own the change. 

If it’s a change that affects several organizations, then it’s the managerial level above that sets the objectives, ultimately the CEO if it affects the whole company. Alternatively, the heads of the organizations need to agree on common objectives and avoid conflicting goals. Otherwise there will be conflicts on operational level, with fights about resources, and the development teams being stuck between priorities. .

Tools & methods: Company Bets, Objectives and Key Results (OKR), vision story, message analysis, time machine, storytelling, metaphors

Examples of areas to improve: time-to-market, value flow, number of releases per year, technical modernization (to achieve increased flow, reduced costs, higher quality, security etc)

Communicate the change

Communicate “What” and “Why”

The C-level executive needs to convey the message of “what” to achieve and “why” at conferences, in newsletters and communicate in daily conversations with the same message. They also need to communicate progress and that the change is important. 

Executives should have a monthly schedule for the agile transformation. The monthly schedule can include: general meetings, release train meetings, product meetings, strategy days, team visits, visits to scrum meetings, etc. – all to show their support.

Tools & methods : Ask Me Anything (AMA), Big Room Planning (BRP), Management by Walking Around (MBWA), conversations one person at a time, what & why presentation, video, newsletter

Communicate agile values

At the core of an agile transformation are the agile values. The C-level executive needs to constantly refer to the importance of following the values. For example: Asking questions about what we can do today, to improve a little for tomorrow. The importance of delegating and that decisions should be made where the expertise is. The C-level executive should specify which agile values are most important for this particular change. 

Celebrate success

When the change is moving towards the objectives of the change, it’s important to celebrate. This is something that executives needs to encourage and sometimes invite to larger celebrations for the organization.

Create passion and psychological safety

Passion for change.

Change, at its best, leads to commitment and passion. Employees who have been waiting for the change, finally see that something is happening. Agile coaches help to create a safe and inspiring environment with the desire to experiment, where it’s okay to make mistakes.

Executives need to support this and pep, inspire and be a transformative leader who is transparent with his or her own change. It’s a great advantage if the personal change is in line with the organization’s. It can be, for example, to become a more servant leader, to delegate more, to ask more compared to giving orders. “Be the change you want to see in the world”.

Tools & methods: Positive psychology, storytelling

Psychological safety

Change can also lead to turbulence and resistance. Agile coaches need to know that there is support for the change, to be able to deal with the storm when it comes. Managers need to be prepared to have challenging conversations and guide employees. Executives need to coach and guide managers, especially those who are reluctant to change. If there are strong opponents to the change, there may be a need for staff changes. 

Tools & methods: Active listening, Non-violent Communication (NVC), coaching

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Imagine ten architects in a room. 

The first thing they would discuss is: “What is architecture?”, and they would use all the time they have at their disposal. 

If no one comes into the room and yells at them that they have to create a target architecture, a guiding principle or anything that helps the teams solve a technical obstacle that stops all delivery in the release train, they will continue the discussion. 

The first architect will say that there are standards and you should not reinvent the wheel. 

The second architect would state that there are several standards and which one should you comply with? 

The first architect would argue that ANSI is the one and only, that states that it’s all about organizing a system, its components and how they relate to each other and the environment. 

The second architect would say that ISO is the preferred choice because it focuses more on the properties of the architecture’s elements, relationships and principles of its design and evolution.

At this time, the third architect would state that there are thought leaders out there like Gartner.

The fourth architect would interrupt and refer to the Zachman Framework from the 80s and that there are some really good nuggets there. 

“Domain-driven architecture”, the fifth architect says and then the argument is in full bloom.

“Event-driven architecture”. “Pipelines.” “Pace-layered”. “Togaf”. “Components”. “Microservices.”

Until the sixth architect, the veteran who will retire in six months, says: “OSI Model. If it’s not broke, don’t try to fix it”

The room all goes quiet until the seventh architect, the newly educated with fresh ideas from the outside world says: “SAFe” and all other architects say “No!” while he raises his arm and says with a fragile voice “They describe much more about architecture than you think”, and all other architects stare at him with a blank expression, some of them raising their eyebrows. 

“Anyway”, says the eight architect, “architecture is easier to understand if we use metaphors. Architecture is like a garden. If you don’t take care of it, it will grow freely and become chaotic. Entropy is a natural law that takes over”.

The seventh architect, still trying to understand why everyone didn’t appreciate SAFe, says: “it’s more like a runway where the code can land. You cannot build the runway while you are landing”

“That metaphor is lame”, says the ninth architect, “its better with train tracks that the train travels on. It’s a parable everyone understands.”

“Or the road railing that you have to stay within on the highway” says the first architect. “Otherwise you collide. Not everyone lands planes or is a train driver. On the other hand, many have driven a car and can relate.”

“No, it’s more like a pop song” says the second. “You have three chords that you can combine so that everyone can sing and dance along.”

“More like jazz where you can improvise once you have experience and have all the theory”, says the third.

“Or a classical ensemble where everyone plays an important part, and it’s only when all is combined that you hear sweet music”, says the fourth while the fifth, sixth and seventh nod in agreement. 

At this time the tenth architect, who has been quiet until now, would clear his voice and say: “Architecture is like love”, and all other nine architects turn their attention to him and listen.

“No one can define it, but everyone knows how it feels. Emotions flow, you walk on light clouds, nothing is impossible, no obstacles are in the way and you can conquer the world!”

“Yes!”

“Awesome!”

“There you have it!”

All architects give their acclamations and raise from their chairs and start clapping and dancing with stiff movements. 

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I’m well aware that people often see me as quite a fearless person. I often get comments like “but you are never afraid of anything”. But as all people I have had lots of struggles every day to overcome my own fears, to prove to myself I can do something I thought I couldn’t. And just as probably most people I have tried and failed a lot. One of my mantras I usually say to myself, and others around me is that it will solve itself somehow just as long as we stick to our values and believe in ourself and each other. As Dandy People now has turned 5 years old and we have grown to over 20 people I’m writing this post aiming to tell a bit of the story behind Dandy People and share some of my own personal fears, beliefs and our struggles and successes as a team along the way. None of this will be any silver bullets, but I hope you might find it valuable and perhaps inspiring.

The Dandy Team
The Dandy team on our spring conference 2022 celebrating turning 5 years together.

Building a learning organization where fast and shared learning is a key strategy

Curiosity is one of our most important characteristics as humans and we should always find new ways to explore and increase the pace of our own learning. I have always been very curious and loved learning new things just as long as no one is forcing me. My own strategy to learn new things has often been to work together with people with other skill sets to learn from them, and with them, while testing and building stuff together. This has been one of my core beliefs of how to deliver value and a foundation that has shaped how we want to work and run Dandy. In Dandy we always see learning as part of our job. This means we shape our assignments to work two and two as often as possible, or in teams. Many times we have shared a “1 FTE” (yes, our customers sometimes call it that) assignment on two people, and we always look for assignments for a team. The reason for this is both that we have a much bigger success rate on tough assignments by doing that, and also that we get to learn from each other on the job and we will live as we preach.. 

This belief around learning has also from the start made us prioritize having quite a big financial space for each individual to put time and money on learning new skills outside of work. Everyone is responsible for their own learning but of course we support each other. By doing this and always striving to deliver valuable training and learning sessions for others we make sure we are always at the front line and we will always be learning, making us ready for any new challenge that might occur within Dandy or at our customers.

Starting up my own business – getting over the fear of hiring people

But if we go back to the very beginning, before we started Dandy People, one of the biggest fears I had was to hire people and to be the one responsible for the wellbeing and financial security of other people outside of my own family. This was holding me back for years to move beyond having my own consultancy with only me, myself and I. This was the first obstacle I had to manage and get over when starting Dandy People. Before this I had been running my own company and doing Agile coaching, pretty much the same as we do today in Dandy, but under the umbrella of another consultancy. At that time I had way too much to do and had to say no to helping more and more customers which made me want to find another solution. I felt a huge need to build my own team to help the customers I had and others like them to bridge the gap between business and IT and by that building organizations that could deliver customer centric solutions. I was just getting more and more customers and I really struggled to find the time to help them in a good way as a one woman band. So knowing what I wanted to do in my company wasn’t a struggle at all. Just continuing with what I did, but together with a team of great people. I also knew I wanted to start a_real_company with people who shared my vision, not an umbrella company where everyone follows their own vision, and not just a group of friends who only share the space and occasionally meet and socialize. I often find it just as valuable to know what you don’t want as what you do want, especially when it comes to business.

After looking around for about a year for someone to start my company with, I realized that the people I enjoyed working with all had their own ideas and visions of companies they wanted to start, and none of those was inline with mine. So I would have to go alone… this could easily have been the end of this dream, since I was pretty sure I would never manage it alone. I would work myself to death then. But it happened so that when we came home to Sweden after celebrating Christmas abroad, we got a phone call at the airport that my husband’s company just got sold, meaning he would get out of running a full time business in just a couple of months! This was amazing news both because it meant we as a family would get a small amount of money from his business that we could invest and he would be available to help me with my dream. The choice was easy. He became my business partner. Just a few months after that, in April 2017, we officially started Dandy People and we had an address downtown for our office where we could set up seminars and meetups to meet customers and candidates for employment. After just another few months, after summer we were already a small team of people that could take on customer assignments and collaborate on business development, just as I was longing for. We have never had any problems paying salaries, not even during Covid (but more on that later) and I have never regretted taking on the role as an employer. I am so happy it didn’t stop me from taking the step to grow my business.

Sharing is caring – and it may just be what you need to build a strong brand

You might have seen or used the infographic posters with our logo on. Most of them have my face on them since I am the creator and designer of them. The story started before I started Dandy People and was one of the kicks in the butt I needed to make the decision to start my own company. I created the first Agile in a Nutshell poster just to be able to give something visual that captured the most important things for the class at Hyper Island that I was going to run a half day short training for together with my colleague Per. We had a lot of experience based exercises as always, and was going to do some theory using a whiteboard. But I felt something more was needed to help them remember afterwards, so I decided just the day before to do a one pager with the key topics. After the training I published it as a PDF for download on our blog just if anyone else would be interested in using it. And it happened a LOT of people were interested in that. A few weeks later I was in Paris on a weekend with Mathias and suddenly I realized I had over hundreds of comments on the share of the blogpost on LinkedIn and many friend requests. My first thought was of course that something was wrong with LinkedIn, but it wasn’t. It just exploded due to people really liked the poster. Sharing valuable content for free has been a great business model and so we have continued to do so. When we create new posters we usually set them free on our Dandy blog within days up to 6 months, and also other content such as canvases, coaching models and serious games.

Some of the posters in the series.

Today I have lost control over how many downloads of the infographic posters we have, and also how many posters we have shared. But a few years ago it was close to 350.000 downloads (totally free with no email signups or nothing). People within the Agile community are translating the posters for free to their language to be able to use them better and we also share those translated posters to everyone, so today we can offer our infographics on Agile topics for free in 15 languages to anyone interested, making the Dandy brand really strong. If you would ask most management consultancies they would probably say this is a no can do for them and any business. I’d say it is exactly the right thing to do if you want to be part of the growing Agile community and if you don’t want to spend huge amounts on useless brand campaigns. Of course it might take some bravery (some would probably call it stupidity), design skills and that you feel fairly safe you know your stuff to make it work. But testing and see how it goes can take you a long way.

Building a company with a strong brand and still minimizing known risks

As I wanted to build a_real_company having an office was important to me and something I wouldn’t negotiate with. Many small business owners already then had their offices at home, but for me it would mean a huge benefit to have a good address downtown in the city to meet with customers and I was sure it would also be easier to attract employees. But we know that statistics say most startups don’t make it due to high costs linked to long contracts, and office space is just exactly that. Meaning getting our own space with a long contract was a big no-no, and that’s why we chose a shared office space instead. We picked one with the best address, a short leasing contract of just one month, where we could have our own room, with good big spaces to run seminars and training, and where we could have our dog 🙂 Those were the key principles and worked out well. We have been able to stay there for 5 years, moving into bigger and more rooms when needed, and now when we have outgrown it, we can easily get our very own space. The move to our very own space is just weeks away now and it feels just like moving out from your parents. We are (almost) grownups finally!

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In this episode I met with Per Kristiansen to talk about serious games (or serious play as they call it at Lego) that we love using as a safe way for exploring complex strategy and play out different scenarios. Per tells the story how it all got started at LEGO when their CEO needed a better way to work with strategy and they created Lego Serious Play. Per was part of the internal research team that discovered that using lego bricks for simulation and learning was just as useful for adults as it is for children. He tells a fascinating story of how they first failed, but later discovered how to make it work and developed it to the metod that it is today, and how it has now expanded from being an internal method within Lego to a global phenomena that it is today.

The conversation starts with us sharing our purposes and values behind our two companies, Trivium and Dandy People, and it happens to be a perfect match 🙂

If you are interested in learning how to facilitate the Lego Serious Play Method Per travels all around the world to facilitate Lego Serious Play trainings and we are really happy to welcome him to Dandy People and Stockholm too

Read more and sign up for the 4 day Lego Serious Play Certification Course in Stockholm here

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In this blog post, we present a case study using the model designed to leverage the processing strengths and mobilize the brainpower of today’s entire (organizational) collective, which we’re currently calling the Grow/Plow Coaching Model. We have previously published a post on the Grow/Plow model that you can find here if you havent read it.

The Grow/Plow Coaching Model

As you can see on the graphic below, GROW and PLOW naturally overlap at the O and W. PLOW supplements GROW so bottom-up thinking could be integrated into a single coaching model we’re calling the Grow/Plow Coaching Model:

The GROW/PLOW Coaching Model for leveraging top-down and bottom-up processing styles
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In this episode of Dandy Conversations I met up with the founder and CEO of Adventures with Agile (AWA) Simon Powers to talk about the values and purposes that drives their companies. We talk about how our work aims to changing mindsets, making people flourish and become their best and how we can support our customers to meet their goals and visions.

I first came to talk to Simon many years back when I first created the Agile in a Nutshell with the Agile Onion which is a creation by Simon, at least in the form that we have it in the poster with the arrow and the descriptions. I contacted him then to see if he was ok with me putting it in the poster – and he was 🙂

Today we both run successful Agile coaching agencies built on the same mindset, to collaborate and use the power of the network to help as many as possible get value from Agile.

The reason we recorded this video was to share our collaboration as companies more openly with the world. AWA have been running their fabulous Agile Coaching trainings with us at Dandy as their partner for Sweden for a few years already, and we are really happy for the collaboration since we know they deliver trainings in the same way we at Dandy do, with Training from Back of the Room and with trainers who themselves work with – and are experts within what they teach others. So no boring theory sessions, instead engaging, fun, deep insights and hands on learning.

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The following was translated and adapted from the original post in Swedish by Jenny Persson.

We work together at Dandy to create and adapt trainings for our customers’ needs. We often sit together to generate ideas. These sessions, like the one we just had, are unbelievably fun. This time, we had read an article that inspired us to create this game. Namely: https://www.creativehackers.co/posts/the-subtle-art-of-fucking-up

Hence the game was called “Biggest Fuck Ups Game” 🙂

Download the gameboard and play Biggest Fuck Ups Game yourself >

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Our Trainings
Foundation Training in design and facilitating workshops with the LEGO® SERIOUS PLAY® methodology – 4 Days On site
Target Group: Professional consultants and facilitators, Company trainers In-house learning and development specialists, Educators HR staff, Team leaders who want to use it as part of their leadership practice
Teachers: Jens Rottbøll
Stockholm 24-27 April 2023