Tag Archives: stakeholders

Agile Personas: A Step Toward More Dynamic Teams | Join #orgdna #futureofwork MON 4/23 from 9-11pET

In our 2018 #orgdna conversations to date, we’ve been discussing the specific roles in organizations that are essential for new thinking. On the short list from our latest transcript, consider the value of team members like these:

  • Connector – linking concepts across domains, silos, or functions
  • Catalyst – sparking or challenging new thinking, helping others break from norms
  • Designer – envisioning alternate end states (what is possible?)
  • Aggregator – focused on semantics, solution elements and actionable takeaways
  • Practitioner/SME – subject matter expert on problems at hand

These roles are laser-focused on problem-solving skills. They may be less common on traditional org charts, but they are essential to high-functioning teams.

You’ll note classic titles like “VP” and “Director” are missing from the list. Titles assigned by H/R are important, but so often hardwire us to limited task assignments and accountabilities. They don’t speak to thinking skills or problem-solving skills – key qualifications for fluid organizations who need to change how they operate.

Perhaps we need something in the middle?

Enter Agile, a methodology for solution design that aligns well with the more dynamic models we’ve been discussing. It emerged from IT, but brings with it flexible charters, movable scope boundaries, and fluid participation. That sounds a lot like the future of work we’ve imagined. And Agile offers faster results than traditional “waterfall” models, dated approaches that deliver answers in annual increments, often after requirements have changed.

Who doesn’t need to move faster in today’s demanding business environements?

Agile uses the notion of Personas, generalized actors in an organization, to define problem/solution stakeholders. Personas are really archetypes, representative roles that help design teams explain how things need to work. Some examples:

  • Leader/Executive – ultimate owner/customer
  • Planner – surveying options, constraints, barriers, and optimal scenarios
  • Line Manager – ensuring resources and productivity, while removing barriers
  • Analyst/SME – subject matter experts, working out specifics

While personas like these seem more familiar than our skill-specific, hypothetical #orgdna roles, they are still generalized. This feels like a step in the right direction. And there are definitely overlaps.

I’ve updated the #orgdna #futureofwork Coggle to show this.

In our Monday 4/23 #orgdna chat, from 9-11pm ET, we’ll unpack how roles become personas in the Agile context, and how this opens up new thinking. Here are a few specific framing Q’s:

  • Q1. On Agile Personas. How does generalizing roles into Agile Personas make problem solving and solution design more fluid?
  • Q2. Changing Mindsets on Key Roles. In practice, how might Agile Personas leverage the power of conceptual skill-based Roles?
  • Q3. Titles. Are they still important?
  • Q4. Can Generalized Roles take Action? In other words, can a team solve problems without task-specific accountabilities?

Much to discuss here. I hope you’ll join us.

Chris Jones aka @sourcepov | Charlotte NC US


ABOUT #ORGDNA.  If you’ve been following along, you’ll know our #orgdna conversation on Twitter is gaining momentum. What will the future of work look like? How can we get there?  See our new #orgdna META page for a little more background on our approach and objectives.  And, as always, we’ll see you online.

 


Actors & Roles: A Deeper Dive | frame for #orgdna #futureofwork 1/15/18

A hearty Happy New Year to you, and thanks for stopping in.  Your timing is good, as we are just now organizing our 2018 agenda.  We’ll continue to use our Coggle diagram as a guide. It’s a topic map we’ve built from prior #orgdna chats, with an infusion of complexity thinking.

For 2018, we’re drilling deeper into the details, for a more pracitical, actionable discussion .. focusing on how the real work gets done.

Let’s use our MON 1/15/18 chat, 9-10:30pm ET, to dive into Stakeholder Factors.  Here’s the preliminary outline, in the form of our chat questions:

  • Q1. Why call them “Actors”? Is it, perhaps, where the action takes place, moving from theory into practice?
  • Q2. Focus on Key Roles: Skills, interests and task demands will vary, but what roles are always essential?
  • Q3. How do Catalysts function? Is this becoming the Leaders primary role?
  • Q4. Why Titles can hurt: Do they sustain calcification?
  • Q5. Long-term Change is hard. Can adapting in real-time be easier?

The conversation may move beyond this outline. This just gets us started.  In fact, the Coggle model we’ve created is evolving with the conversation too, as we learn more.

As a reference during the chat, I’ll insert our latest Coggle map; we’ll be discussing the upper left branch, in yellow.

ORGDNA_FutureOfWork-v1-OCT2017

For more in depth viewing, try the ORGDNA-FutureOfWork PDF .

We’d love your input on all this. Just drop us comments on this post, or to individual members tweeting at #orgdna. Better still, it may be easiest to simply join us live; details are below.

Our conversations are always lively.  I hope you’ll join us.

–  Chris Jones @sourcepov in Charlotte NC

 

ABOUT THE GROUP. Over the last 5 years, a self-selecting band of OD thinkers has been discussing the future of the organization, using hashtag #orgdna. The group continues to evolve, but the number of active contributors hovers around 20-25.

ABOUT THE TWITTER CHAT. On any given month, 5-10 of us come together on Twitter for conversation, which is open to all. For the chat itself, we recommend a tweet streaming app like TweetDeck. Just add #orgdna to your tweets, and we’ll start to exchange ideas at the appointed hour.

ABOUT THE TOPIC. Much is being said on “the future of work” and its unfolding dimensions. Don’t miss Deloitte’s recent Tom Friedman interview, hosted by Deloitte CEO Cathy Engelbert and their senior strategist John Hagel. Add #futureofwork to your tweets for additional cross-over engagement.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR. Chris Jones is a thinker, instigator, and explorer of edges, unpacking the forces inside organizations for over 30 years. Look for more here on the #orgdna blog, on Medium – or for his deepest dive to date, over on Amazon.