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Agile Innovation Leaders


Feb 18, 2024

Bio

 

Bryan is a seasoned Enterprise Transformation Strategist, Coach and Trainer specialising in the practical implementation of Business Agility practices within all types of organisations. He brings a balance of business, technical and leadership expertise to his clients with a focus on how to achieve immediate gains in productivity, efficiency, visibility and flow. Bryan is a key contributor in the development of the AgilityHealth platform, AgileVideos.com and the Enterprise Business Agility strategy model and continues to train, speak and write about leading Business Agility topics.

 

Interview Highlights

02:40 Driving strategy forwards

03:05 Aligning OKRs

06:00 Value-based prioritisation

07:25 An outcome-driven approach

09:30 Enterprise transformation

13:20 The ten elephants in the business agility room

14:10 Misaligned incentives

15:40 Top heavy management

18:50 Being open to change

19:40 Process for improving process

25:15 Being a learning organisation

26:45 Leaders drive cultural change

29:50 Capacity and employee burnout

 

Social Media

 

·         LinkedIn: linkedin.com/in/bryantew

·         Twitter: @B2Agile

·         Email: bryan@agilityhealthradar.com

·         Website: www.agilityhealthradar.com 

 

Books & Resources

 

·         The Compound Effect The Compound Effect: Amazon.co.uk: Perseus: 9781593157241: Books by Darren Hardy

·         The Trillion Dollar Coach Trillion Dollar Coach: The Leadership Handbook of Silicon Valley’s Bill Campbell: Amazon.co.uk: Schmidt, Eric, Rosenberg, Jonathan, Eagle, Alan: 9781473675964: Books by Eric Schmidt and co

·         Project to Product Project to Product: How Value Stream Networks Will Transform IT and Business: How to Survive and Thrive in the Age of Digital Disruption with the Flow Framework: Amazon.co.uk: Mik Kersten: 9781942788393: Books by Mik Kirsten

·         EBA strategy model: https://agilityhealthradar.com/enterprise-business-agility-model/

 

Episode Transcript

Intro: Hello and welcome to the Agile Innovation Leaders podcast. I’m Ula Ojiaku. On this podcast I speak with world-class leaders and doers about themselves and a variety of topics spanning Agile, Lean Innovation, Business, Leadership and much more – with actionable takeaways for you the listener.

Ula Ojiaku

Hello again everyone, welcome back to the Agile Innovation Leaders podcast. My guest today is Bryan Tew, and this episode is going to be covering the second half of the conversation I had with Bryan on all things enterprise and business agility. So in part one, if you've listened to it already, or if you haven't, please go to that first, I'd really, really recommend, because Bryan talked about how to overcome failed deliveries, meeting teams where they're at, establishing and driving strategy forward. Now for this part two, we went into the topic of OKRs, Objectives and Key Results, and how to align these with strategy. He also talked about the ten elephants in the business agility room, and the importance of being open to change and being a learning organisation and how leaders are critical to driving culture change. Without further ado, part two of my conversation with Bryan Tew. There are some things you've said about what leaders need to do and some of them include, you know, looking at the lean portfolio management, taking an outcome-based approach to defining the strategy at all levels and making sure that, you know, it kind of flows, not in a cascaded manner, but in a way that each layer would know how it's feeding into delivering the ultimate strategy of the organisation. Now, how, from a practical perspective, I mean, yes, you use OKRs, or objectives and key results, you know, that's one way of doing that. But how, are you suggesting then that the leaders would have to write the OKRs for every layer? Or is it just about being clear on the intent and direction of travel and letting each area define it within their context, but with some input from them?

Bryan Tew

No, it's a great question and I'll try to visualise as much as I can, but when you think about it this way, when you start at the top, and let's say that we're coming up with some enterprise level three year OKRs. So where are we going for the next three years? And you know what, things can change, so that's why we check in on those, you know, at least every six months, if not every quarter, because we're learning a lot and we want to adjust. But the thing is, if we have that level of strategy clarified, and not only that, but we're aligned across our leadership group, that means that the priorities that we're focusing on should align as well, and that's the important thing here. So now as we start to move from the enterprise down to maybe a division or portfolio level, all of the OKRs at that level should in some way align up to our enterprise, right? Whether it's around certain objectives that we're trying to accomplish from a financial perspective, or customer goals, or people goals, whatever it is, but now there's something that we can connect to as a foundation. So those senior leaders, although they can provide support and help, typically now it's your portfolio leaders that are taking the lead on building their OKRs that are aligned, and then down to maybe your program or train or whatever level you'd call it, what those OKRs will look like, all the way down to where every single team, which in reality, every single person in the organisation, sees how they fit in driving strategy. Now, I might be in facilities, I might be in HR, I might be in marketing, but I know that what I do is making a difference in making our strategy move forward, even though it's my small part. And I love that, that's where everyone feels connected. Now, what I see more often, and this is really unfortunate, and some people try OKRs and have a bad experience because leaders will just say, okay, everyone go out and do your own OKRs, but they're not aligned to anything. They're aligned to the local priorities, which may or may not be the right things to be working on at all. And so that's where I would say senior leaders need to take the initiative, and they can have help, that's why coaches are there, that's why their directs are there, they can even pull in people that might have expertise in certain areas to craft the OKRs, but even internally, you're going to have great expertise, but the idea is that, let's craft an OKR, even if it's not the senior leaders writing it, but it's actually showing the right message. Here's what we believe we need to do, and these are the outcomes we need to achieve in order for us to actually accomplish a goal. Like, what does that look like for us? And then I love to just press on leaders and ask, how would you know that we're successful? What would you be looking for? And that's a great start to your key results. So we have a really great framework, a very simple framework to build out OKRs, without just putting it into a template to start out, because I just want those main thoughts, like, why are we doing this? What is it going to accomplish for us? Who's going to be involved and what customer is this going to impact? And what's the best way to measure progress, and measure success? Like, those are the things I would start with, which makes OKRs a lot easier. But then from there, I have to have leaders come together to actually look at the work, and which of those items that, maybe, there may be many, which of those are actually going to be the most valuable to move forward with your strategy? You do not want your lower-level people who don't understand the strategy like you do, making those decisions. What are the best things for us to do? And then from there, that's where we can actually bring in the prioritisation, the value-based prioritisation, which we recommend, and starting to build more of your outcome alignment across your organisation. So yeah, there's so many great things that can be done. It's not a ton of work if you start to build a cadence and just a nice process for, how would you do that every quarter?

Ula Ojiaku

And that's a great starting point, because that reduces the risk of, like you said earlier, you know, the teams working on the wrong thing, you know, executing perfectly, but it's the wrong thing. Now, in terms of the process, because you've talked about how the role leaders need to play, you've given examples of how, what they could do to encourage agility in the enterprise or in the business. Now, would it be the same for a functionary division in an organisation that's going through their, let's call it, for lack of a better term, you know, an agile transformation, quote unquote, would you expect the process and the practices to be the same for each division, say finance versus IT versus procurement?

Bryan Tew

Well, so that's a great question and I would say yes and no. So, the process is probably going to be similar. For instance, I would always suggest starting with an outcome driven approach where we have some transformation outcomes that we're trying to achieve. You know, without that, how do you know that you've actually made it or that you're actually getting there? So I would suggest that for any type of organisation, regardless of type of work, but the practices will probably look a little bit different. You know, what you start with might look a little bit different. In fact, maybe I'll share a specific example here for a transformation. In fact, this was more around what leaders need to own around business agility, but this was a large financial services organisation with nine different divisions, and they all recognised that there were gaps in how they were delivering and they needed help, you know, and many of them had tried Agile, but when it came to actually applying OKRs and customer seed and organisational design and all these different ideas, especially things around our culture and leadership, there's always going to be some level of resistance, you know, so we need to really clarify what are the benefits that this will provide for us, why is this going to help us, what specific problems will this solve? And I would suggest that's where you start every time, like what are the biggest challenges you as leaders are trying to solve for? Like, what's keeping you up at night? What are you thinking about? That's why the practices are going to be different. Maybe my biggest problem is I have capacity issues, or maybe my people are feeling burned out, or maybe we're just not getting enough done for our customers, or we have changing needs all the time, or we're getting disrupted, whatever it might be, that's where we want to start. And so, in some cases that might mean, well, we need some portfolio management practices and others it might be, well, we need more customer centricity practices. And others it might be, we need to really focus on our teams. So that's why it changed a little bit. So in this organisation, there was one group who had been pretty successful with Agile and they said, you know what, sign us up, we want to do this, you know, we're ready for this leadership level of agility, so sign us up. And it was a good idea, because it's not going to fail. When you have leaders that are super excited about it, they're willing to put in the effort, and that can at least prove that it can work. And so we believe in what we call quarterly Sprints, we're familiar with a Sprint cycle, two, three weeks, whatever it might be, when you're looking at enterprise transformation, we believe in quarterly Sprints, where you have specific goals you're trying to accomplish for the quarter, and a laid out process, a roadmap to get there. So, we built a quarterly process, kind of the first quarter for this group. We had specific milestones we were trying to meet and the reality is they did an excellent job. You know, there were some learnings along the way and there's always some growing pains, but they did an excellent job to the point where, after the quarter, we came back to the leadership group and they were able to describe, you know, some of the real successes and wins they'd had. Now at that point, we have eight other groups who are kind of on the fence or trying to, you know, is this really going to work for us? And this was a brilliant decision by the senior leader. They said, why don't we go next with our most problematic group, the biggest risk group, in fact, this was the biggest PnL. We basically said, if it can work with this group, first of all, it'll drive some excellent change for us, but it'll prove that it can work for anybody. If it can work for you, it can work for anybody. And that's what we did. And luckily we had some leaders that, you know, weren't necessarily super excited about it, but were at least willing to give it a try and willing to put it in the effort to make it a successful trial, or at least a real trial. And it was great, we had great conversations, we started to implement OKRs, we started to look at their strategy, we started to bring teams in to start to build out some of their agility practices. But the leadership would meet together regularly to talk about what's the next step in our process. We had learning sessions, but all of those were hands-on doing. So, for instance, let's build out our three-year OKRs, let's build out our one-year OKRs, let's bring the work in and let's prioritise on a big board to see where things fit and are aligned, let's start to think about our capacity constraints and all of those things. And yeah, we had a lot of lessons learned, a lot of things that we had to adjust, but overall it was pretty successful. And after that quarter of work, we went back to that same group of leaders and every single leader said, sign me up, I'm ready because if it can work for this group and we're seeing benefits there, then I want to try it here as well. And I love that, because ultimately we want to prove out some success that certain practices can work, or let's learn that they're not working and not be married to something that's just not going to help us. But then let's have leaders engaged from start to finish where they know what they're responsible for, and ultimately what I love to see is when a leader says, you know, at the beginning of this quarter or the beginning of the six months from now, we had these three main problems, and those aren't our biggest problems anymore. We've solved those to a point where we can manage, now we have other problems we need to solve for, and that's what you want, right? And the nice thing is if you've solved the biggest problem, or at least you have a good handle on it, now the next biggest problem maybe isn't as big as that first one was, and we can start to make more progress, and maybe new practices become more evident. So, and that's what we try to do with any transformation. If you're just going through the motions to transform your group because it's what everyone else is doing or it’s  what we were recommended to do or whatever other reason, it's not going to be nearly as impactful as if it's actually solving the things that you know need to be solved for. And that's where you get leaders' attention. Instead of it just being a side project while I focus on my real work, we're saying, this is solving your real work, and that's where they get really excited about, you know, being involved and seeing the day-to-day progress.

Ula Ojiaku

No, that's awesome. So in terms of, you've already mentioned some of it in terms of what leaders should watch out for, one of it is definitely not being passive, you know, go ye be agile whilst we do the real work. Anything else they should be watching out for?

Bryan Tew

Well, you know, that may be a good transition to something I like to share sometimes at conferences. This is what I call the 10 elephants in the business agility room, I mentioned one earlier, but these are things really geared towards leaders. So, I hope that our audience here, if you're struggling with any of these that I describe, gosh, there are real solutions, absolutely, but here's the biggest message. Don't ignore these, because they will eventually bite you and potentially even cause a derailment of your transformation efforts. So I'll just walk through these. Certainly, I'm available for more of a deep dive if anyone wants to reach out, but these are what I call the 10 elephants in the business agility room because no one wants to talk about them, right, they're hard topics, they're difficult topics, but you cannot be truly successful from a business agility perspective all around if you ignore these. So the first one, and this is probably one of the biggest ones that we see, is when we see misaligned incentives, so that's number one. And friends, the idea behind this is sometimes you have these transformation goals and you want these to work, but in reality you have incentives that are very much misaligned to those transformation goals, even some of your product level goals, I'll sometimes see, for instance, product managers who part of their compensation package has maybe an incentive goal around how many projects you start or how many products that we deliver. It's like, all about outputs. Nothing to say about how effective they are or what the actual outcomes from those products might be, it's just as long as we get a project started, well, that's very anti-Agile in reality, you know, especially when we're thinking about true value. So you need to really look at your incentives. Now, leadership incentives we could talk all day about, right, sometimes it's around specific financial goals, sometimes about people goals. What I would always suggest is rethink your incentives to become more outcome-oriented, not necessarily tied directly to an OKR or key result, but related, okay, aligned to those, because what your incentives should actually be around would be your business vision, and the business outcomes you're trying to accomplish, why would it make sense to have anything else? So that's one thing that we see oftentimes has to be discussed at some point, right?

Ula Ojiaku

Definitely, because incentives would determine the behaviour, which leads to the results we get.

Bryan Tew

So, the second one is kind of related and, and this is around sometimes we see a lot of, especially in large organisations, top heavy management, we see a lot of leaders, and not enough doers, and the reality is I get this, because in large organisations we want to reward people for a great job, and so we continue to promote, but we just add more leaders that are sometimes not necessary. And remember, those are highly paid people who now maybe don't have a lot of responsibility. I've seen, some directors, for instance, with like three direct reports and they don't really do a lot, and it's just unfortunate that we're trying to reward people in a way that actually hurts our business. So, I know it's a hard thing to talk about, but at a certain point I would always suggest that let's take a look at what leaders are necessary and what balance do we need between the leaders and the doers, the people in the trenches doing the work. And we've seen lots of, of managers and supervisors and directors and general managers and operations managers and VPs and senior VPs, and some of them are absolutely needed and they do incredible work, but sometimes there are others that just aren't needed, we just don't know how to handle that. So that's something that would be part of a true transformation, is to think about what's the right balance for us, okay, and make small steps to get there. Now, kind of related though is sometimes we see that they're just bad managers, and that's number three, okay, bad managers, where we are promoting people, let's say they were an excellent developer, as an example, okay, or QA leader, or it could be any type of role, and we promote them to be a manager. They don't have good management skills yet, they have never done this before, what they're still good at is what they were doing before. So they like to solve problems, they like to fight fires, they like to do all of the tactical things. And they, some of them, are just really bad with relationships, and so they become almost despised by their people because they're just very abrasive, sometimes they just don't treat their people well, and you have to watch for that. Now, I'll say this as well. Sometimes you have these great performers who don't even want to be managers, but it's the only opportunity they have in the organisation to progress or get a pay raise or promotion. And so, we find that in, especially large organisations, there are so many other needs that these people can move into, you know, for instance, we need, internally we need coaches, like technical coaches or DevOps coaches or architecture coaches, or even people coaches that these people could start to do some work in, we might have some technical roles, or project management roles or whatever it might be, that these people might move into, RTE roles, or continuous improvement champion roles, and sometimes that's a much better fit, or potentially even managing a process or service or operational area instead of managing people, that can sometimes be a great fit. So that's one thing to watch out for, because not everyone is well equipped to become a manager, and you might lose some of your most talented doers because they're sick of their manager, they're tired of being treated the way they have been, so watch for that. Which leads me to number four, and this is where it goes back to leaders. Sometimes we'll see leaders that say they want change, but they don't want change in my area. Change everywhere else, but don't change me, right, because I'm comfortable with what we're doing and I own it and it's my fiefdom. And friends, if you want true enterprise transformation, and really enterprise delivery that is aligned to your strategy, we all have to be open to what changes make sense. Now, we're not trying to force fit any change, I would never suggest that, and if you have vendors or coaches that are trying to just force fit change for the sake of change, then you need to ask questions about that. But how do we actually improve our process so we can deliver more effectively? And this is where I'll just, I hope that this will be a nugget of wisdom for people. But I would say this, the important thing is not your process. Okay, you can have an agile process, you could have a waterfall process, you could have any process. The important thing is your process for improving your process. How are you continually optimising? How are you looking at what's working or what's not working, more importantly, and really take action to fix those things that are not working to improve and optimise. That is a continual thing, and it never ends, especially with the way that technology advancements are taking place. We are always going to get disrupted in different ways, customer changing needs and so forth, that's always going to change the way we work. So let's continually optimise by improving the way that we improve our process. So, kind of with that, leaders need to really own that yes, we are open to change, but let's make sure it makes sense, let's look at what our needs are and how we can actually improve the way that we deliver. Now, the next one, number five, this is maybe the hardest one, and this is where sometimes we have rigid funding models that are just not allowing for agility and adaptability, and I think every organisation struggles with this. And I'll just tell you, I'll just give you one example of an organisation where we actually went through the work to build OKRs, you know, these really great OKRs that all the leadership team was aligned on, and when we actually went to, okay, what are we going to do about it? They said, well, all of our projects are funded for the year, so we can't do anything about it. And when that realisation came that the work that they were actually having their teams do day-to-day was not the work that would actually drive their most important outcomes, it was like this slap in the face, like, we've got to change this, we've got to do something different. And so, having the conversation, starting out with your finance folks, with your product folks, I find personally in my experience, that it is not hard to have a conversation with finance, bring in your CFO, bring in their staff, it's not hard to have the conversation because in reality, any good CFO would be looking at how can we, as a finance organisation, better support our delivery in product organisation. Like, that's what we should always be thinking about. So I find that they're usually open to ideas, they just don't know what they don't know. And so I'll sometimes talk to IT folks, IT leaders, and they'll say, well, you know, our finance group will never go for this. Have you brought it to them to really consider on, because I would be surprised if they would be that resistant, if this is the way the business is going, right? So I don't find that that's such a hard conversation. Now, making the actual changes needs to be a little incremental.

Ula Ojiaku

Can I ask a question about that though? And I do agree that, you know, most people, they come to work, wanting to do their best for the organisation and to move things forward, and that includes finance, legal, whatever, you know, division. Now what if it's a publicly traded organisation, you know, they have regulatory, you know, reporting needs, and so how do you navigate through that?

Bryan Tew

So, in reality, most of the regulatory aspects of your financials are not going to need to change all that much, it's how is the money being used? So for instance, instead of funding projects, which it's easy to see a start and an end date for a project, we're going to adjust this, and that's one of the reasons why using increments like program increments, PIs, is helpful, or even quarterly increments, and saying, we're going to fund teams within a structure, like a value stream potentially, and then we can leave it to the local leaders, the product folks, the product managers, to determine based on our outcomes, what should the teams focus on now. I mean, the reality is we're paying for those people whether they're part of a project or not, right? So if you move the money to fund a backlog of work, rather, that can change and be prioritised based on what we're learning, instead of just a project from start to finish, you'll see tremendous gains in how we can adapt and truly work on the right things in the moment. Now, I will say that maybe that doesn't work for everyone to start out for sure, and that usually is an incremental process to get there, but when you think about it that way, can we still have the same controls in place for how we check in on how the money is being spent? Absolutely. In fact, I would suggest that you're probably going to see a lot more physical evidence that you're providing value as you have Sprint demos and system demos and PI demos to actually see how the work is actually being delivered. And then getting feedback from customers much more effectively. Now it's just a matter of how do we actually look at where our people are, where is the time going? And sometimes that's not even that important when you realise that it's really about how the solutions, the products and solutions, are actually being accomplished. So that, to me, is not the big constraint here, and it's certainly not the problem that I would start with, but it is something that we need to be thinking about. Does that change, and do we have specific nuances based on our regulatory environment, our country, whatever it is, that we have to really consider. And I would say the same thing goes through for Agile capitalisation. So many groups are not capitalising to the maximum benefit that they should be because they're scared that maybe we're going to go off the rails. Friends, there is absolute integrity in doing capitalisation for agile projects or agile buckets of work that you are probably able to really benefit from, and you're probably not, there's a lot of work there that you can actually bring in then for some of your spending around transformation work because of the gains. The sixth one is more at a people level, but can be helped by your leaders. This is an unwillingness to share knowledge and do cross training. Now, sometimes people just don't want to learn new things, maybe we have a fixed mindset. More often, people don't want to share what they know because I feel like I'm the indispensable tiger and that makes me more valuable, or sometimes it's a bigger problem than that, that leadership can manage. It's, I don't have time to do this. I want to share, because I need help, or I want to learn, because this will help my team, but we have so many priorities day to day and deadlines that we're trying to meet, we're working the midnight oil anyway, I don't have time for cross training, I don't have time to teach someone a skill that will actually benefit us for years going forward. So leaders need to actually build time and space and capacity for knowledge sharing, cross training, learning. If you're not a learning organisation, friends, then you are falling behind. And this is the time where we believe that learning may be the only competitive advantage that you'll have, you know, the way that you can learn fast and implement your learning into your delivery system.

Ula Ojiaku

I came across this material, and well, basically it just said we're no longer in the information era, we’re now in the augmented era. So before it's like, you know, you're learning right now, it has to be embedded into how you are working, you are learning as you go, and that's the expected norm moving forward.

Bryan Tew

So seven is avoiding the cultural impacts of transformation, right, and I think we're kind of overcoming that hump, but the reality is that leaders drive culture change. It’s not just a grassroots culture that we're looking at, you know, teams can have their own culture, even a train can have their own culture, but when you're looking at an organisational culture, leaders drive the culture through example, through their behaviours, through the values that we articulate and share and reinforce, but it's also about how do we work and what are we trying to accomplish? And so that's why in our EBA model, we actually have a leadership and culture pillar specifically that leaders need to own, because in reality, culture is one of those top most important things that will actually establish lasting change.

Ula Ojiaku

And by EBA you mean Enterprise Business Agility. Awesome.

Bryan Tew

Yeah, which leads us to number eight. And this is where, kind of back to another one, leaders will say something but not really mean it. For instance, leaders will say that they need to prioritise better. Yes, we need better prioritisation. Yes, a value-based scoring system sounds amazing. But then in reality, they'll go and pull the trump cards and they'll escalate and they'll pull things out of the hat because we need this done now instead of actually looking at the value, the business value of the priorities that we should have in place. So it takes some discipline, and yes, we need some level of money to account for those rapid changes or rapid things that come in that we don't want to miss out on. That's why the ability to have adaptive funding is so important. You know, how often can you ask yourselves, have we had an opportunity where if we don't hit this right now, we're going to miss the window of opportunity? And it's shameful when an organisation says, well, we have to approve that in our budgeting process, so that's going to take months. Well, okay, I guess you don't want that opportunity, right? So all of that makes a difference. So how do we prioritise and how do we adjust and look at priorities constantly? We're always reprioritising based on value, and based on what we're seeing in our marketplace, in our industry, with our people. All that matters. But when I see leaders that, you know, they'll kind of say from a word perspective only, yes, I agree, these are the priorities, and then they'll do their very different own thing for their people, that's a problem, right, that's a problem.

Ula Ojiaku

And where I've seen this happen as well, it kind of ties in with your number one, which is misaligned incentives, but sometimes it's really, okay, yes, this is the right thing to do, but my target says X, so we're not going to do Y because I need to hit my targets and get my bonus. But anyway, so that's number eight. Sorry, go on.

Bryan Tew

And so Ula, maybe this sounds familiar, but sometimes I'll hear a leader that will be part of our kind of portfolio or enterprise strategy, and then they'll go back to the people and say, you know, don't worry, those are the priorities for the business, but I'll tell you your real priorities. Really? You mean you're not aligned with your business? Because that's a problem. So anyway, that leads us to number nine, which is putting a blind eye to capacity and employee burnout. Sometimes we just don't want to talk about it, right? We don't want to think about it, we know that our people are, you know, probably burning out. We're asking them to work weekends and late nights, but, you know, they'll figure it out. Or sometimes we'll have leaders that will push more work to the teams that are already over capacity, because in their minds they'll think, well, if they feel the pressure, they'll just start to do more, they'll somehow produce more and we'll force them to kind of get these deadlines made. Friends, you're going to lose people that way. You're going to lose quality. Lots of problems from that perspective. And I will tell you this, that there was one organisation where they wanted to bring in business agility and they said their number one problem was that their best people had been burned out and were all leaving. And when your best people leave, that puts you in a really terrible situation, doesn't it? So they realised they had to stop that, and this was year after year of, you know, it's going to get better, just get this project done, it's going to get better, and it never does. So, which leads us to our 10th elephant in the room. And this one I am, I give you kind of as a bonus because it's not really an elephant anymore. It's more of just something that should be part of our initial conversation. It's not having an outcome-oriented measurement strategy for your teams and transformation. So we kind of briefly touched on that earlier, but starting out any kind of change work or transformation work with specific outcomes that will actually help you to know that you're getting the business value or the needs met that you have in mind, that's so important, whether they're OKRs or other type of format, you know, that's not as important for me, but do you have a plan for how you're driving the right results? That's important. And one of the things that, that we do at AgilityHealth is we build a measurement strategy in place for your teams. You know, how healthy are they, how are they maturing, how are they performing? But also, I would say not just your teams, but your individuals. How do you know your individuals are doing well? But also, how about performance level, whether it's a train, a program, and as well as your portfolio and enterprise. If you don't know how you're doing in each of those areas, you know, that's actually what we try to help organisations with. So that's been really exciting for us to be able to work in. And those are the 10 elephants.

Ula Ojiaku

They're all very thought provoking elephants, if I may say so myself. And this is really great in terms of, and I have attended one of your courses, you took us through the Enterprise Business Agility Strategist course. That was excellent, life changing, I'm saying it not just because you're here, but it's true, it did make me think, it opened my eyes and it gave me a more joined up perspective of, you know, what a true transformation should look like and what are the key principles and pillars that one needs to consider to ensure that their transformation effort is sustainable. And you also have, you know, the tool that you have, you know, the AgilityHealth Radars and the tools, they are quite useful as well. Yeah, so great.

Bryan Tew

Yeah, absolutely. And I'm glad to hear you say that because ultimately the Enterprise Business Agility Model is really for leaders. It's a strategy model for leaders, you know, leaders, coaches, transformation folks who are really leading transformations, that's the intention, so you can have everything in place so your teams can actually be successful and deliver most effectively. Agile only gets you part of the way, right, and Agile is part of the model for sure, but it's not what leaders focus most on, right? It's what teams will do. Leaders need to do the other things will actually allow your teams to be successful. If anyone's interested in looking at the model, you can actually go to agilityhealthradar.com and that's where you can see our radars, that's where you can also go to the EBA model, and all of that is there.

Ula Ojiaku

So what books have you recommended most to people, and why?

Bryan Tew

Yeah, great question. So, you know, one that I've recommended for years that I really have enjoyed, I mean this was lifechanging for me, is called The Compound Effect by Darren Hardy, and the reason for that is this will really help you as an individual, a leader, a coach, whatever role, to really build in excellent habits, and there are many self-help books around how to build good habits. This was by far the best one that I've read, and it really kind of goes through a step by step - here's how you start from your morning routine to how you start to build in the right practices day to day, you know, how you influence others, like it's been tremendous. I'll give two others as well. I really loved the Trillion Dollar Coach, and this was written by some of the Google guys talking about a coach that really helped Silicon Valley organisations think more strategically and become real excellent leaders. So it's called the Trillion Dollar Coach, Eric Schmidt is one of the co-authors there, and he happened to be my CEO at Novell back in the day, so that was kind of exciting, and I recommend that for any type of leadership role or coach role. And then another one that is more recent, but I've just really loved is called Project to Product by Mik Kersten, many of you have heard of this one. I see a lot of organisations right now trying to move from projects to more product-oriented organisations, and he has a great way of thinking about that through his flow model to talk about how do you practically do that, so I highly recommend that one as well.

Ula Ojiaku

So where can the audience find you?

Bryan Tew

Well, I am on LinkedIn. I am one of the only Bryan Tews, T-E-W, Bryan with a Y, but I'd be happy to take any emails at bryan@agilityhealthradar.com. I do use Twitter, I don't use it a lot, but you can find me there as well, at B2Agile. Okay. And you know what, I just love having these conversations. So if any of you are interested in whether it's our strategy model or our EBA Radar or our AgilityHealth Radars, we have actually an OKR or outcome dashboard that if you're getting into OKRs, that might be a great thing to try out and utilise, that’s been really helpful, we use it internally. And those are all things that we're real excited about. And sometimes I'll be at different conferences, speaking here and there, and I always love to do that, but to certainly reach out, I'd love to share any thoughts and ideas with you, and certainly help in what problems you're trying to solve.

Ula Ojiaku

Thank you so much, Bryan, these would be in the show notes as well. Any final words for the audience?

Bryan Tew

You know, I'm just excited that this has been such a big part of our community now, thinking about business agility, enterprise agility, it's a different feel than when we were just talking about Scrum and Kanban and some of these more specific frameworks. Business agility truly is opening up organisations doors to a new level of possibility. So I would say if you're just starting out on your business agility, learning and journey, keep that up, look at the resources that will help you learn what's going to solve your biggest challenge, it's an exciting place to be and I love that there are so many getting into this space because it's kind of the next level of really organisational optimisation, regardless of what kind of organisation you are. And what I love about business agility is it applies to any type of team, any type of group, because there are always things that we can do to improve the way that we either support our business, work in the business, or provide services for our customers. So I'll kind of leave it at that.

Ula Ojiaku

Well, thank you so much, Bryan. It's been an absolute pleasure and I've also gained insights speaking with you, so thank you for making the time.

Bryan Tew

Absolutely my pleasure, Ula.

Ula Ojiaku

That’s all we have for now. Thanks for listening. If you liked this show, do subscribe at www.agileinnovationleaders.com or your favourite podcast provider. Also share with friends and do leave a review on iTunes. This would help others find this show. I’d also love to hear from you, so please drop me an email at ula@agileinnovationleaders.com Take care and God bless!