Agile, Lean & Exceptional Value in Sweden

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During the past couple of decades, I’ve had the honor and privilege to work with some amazing teams here in Sweden. So, it is no surprise to me that frameworks and methodologies that emphasize collaboration, cooperation and consensus work so well here in Sweden, for example:

  • Scrum – Jeff Sutherland, Ken Schwaber
  • SAFe – Dean Leffingwell
  • Lean – most trace the origins of Lean to Henry Ford (and his visit to the Butcher shop) and some even to Ransom E Olds (who patented the production line first)

To me, what is fascinating is that these frameworks work well, regardless of national culture, not just in Sweden but also in the Americas, Asia and the rest of Europe. Since the national culture here in Sweden has collaboration, cooperation and consensus as core, agreed-upon values, my Swedish colleagues have a natural head-start over many other regions when using Agile, Scrum and Lean.

When a framework demonstrates that it is useful (and works) in a local context, then as a business person (that is focused on enabling teams to add the highest possible value in each and every assignment) I find that compelling and worthy of additional investigation.

During the past few years here in Sweden I have been working on a case study with AI (Artificial Intelligence) teams. Once again, it was my Swedish co-workers demonstrating that they are among some of the best in the world at creating not just great business value, but truly remarkable (and sustainable) results. My opportunity to be one small part of these teams was because one of the senior team members was well versed in Agile, Lean as well as the principles of Flow.

So, he reached out to me to see if I would be willing to support the teams in their journey(s) with additional training, coaching and mentoring. After a number of discussions, I joined the AI team to encourage and guide them along the way to achieving sustainable high-performance. Here is an overview of what these amazing Swedish team members achieved during these past few years:

Flow in a Swedish Context

The teams were using Agile to deliver pilots for AI (Artificial Intelligence) “digital co-workers.” In the beginning of their journey it took eight (8) months and around 7-8 people (full time) to deliver a pilot. Still, they felt that they could achieve even better results. As can be seen from the picture above, by the end of my time with them, the teams were able to deliver more than two times faster with three times less people (8 months –> 4 months, 7.5 people –> 2-3 people). Well done and kudos to the teams!

During the team’s journey (since not all of the team members had been trained yet in Agile, Lean or Scrum) we started with the basics; and, trained almost all of the them in Scrum and Agile (through the lens of Flow). From that point forward, with everyone on the same page in Scrum (as well as having the learned the basics of Flow), this helped the teams move from “Performing” to a sustainable “High-Performing” level in the Aha! Curve:

Aha Curve color 2018 w c

The Principles taught in Flow also cut across cultures (both national and business), just like Scrum, SAFe and Lean. And, here at Dandy we have a number of training courses for each area in which an organization may desire to do a transformation:

Transform 4-box w 4R 4D Infinity color 2018 w c

Each of the following training courses build on the other three areas (you cannot transform one area without impacting the other three):

  • Scrum Master Training (Individual and Team)
  • Product Owner Training (Team and Product)
  • Agile Coach and Enterprise Agile Coach (note: The Flow Certified Professional applies to all four areas: Individual, Team, Product and Organizational, but it is optimized for those that want to become an ultimate Enterprise Agile Coach)

When I facilitate certification preparation courses in the above areas, they are taught through the lens of Flow. As a previous Swedish participant summed it up, “Flow helps everyone (Scrum, Kanban, Scrumban, XP, Agile, SAFe, LeSS, Nexus, etc.) play nice together!”

As I have previously shared in the Flow breakfast seminars here in Stockholm, an Enterprise Agile Coach needs to also be a competent Management Consultant (that understands how to mitigate and/or eliminate politics). Flow (and Flow-based training) gives you the tools you need in your coaching and consulting toolkits to be great at both:

Agile Management Consulting color 2018 w c

Flow enables Enterprise Agile Coaches to effectively support Executives and leaders in creating the ecosystem and culture that will turbocharge the organization’s teams and stakeholders in their journey up the Aha! Curve.

Join me for the next Flow Training on 18-19 October here in Stockholm, Sweden:

Flow Certified Professional Prep Course – Get to the optimal state of high performance – 2 Day Training









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