About this Publication

Survive & Thrive on Disruption

Today companies are expected to be flexible and both rapidly responsive and resilient to change, which basically asks them to be Agile.

Lack of an overarching theory about how to expand the Agile Manifesto has led to many fragmented attempts to apply Agile company-wide. Yet, doing Agile (the mechanics) is different from being Agile (the mindset). The mindset lets you apply flexible Agile patterns not only for software development teams but for the whole company.

Many experts are looking into implementing company-wide Agility. Yet, they work from one perspective.

For example:

  • A Beyond Budgeting expert might say, “Stop fixing the budget annually, because otherwise you won’t have the flexibility to react to frequent market changes.”
  • An Open Space expert might say, “You need to make space for what you don’t know and can’t control, for totally new things to emerge. If people can follow their passion, you will be able to implement company-wide Agility, otherwise people will just do what they are asked.”
  • A Sociocracy expert might say, “You first need to resolve the power structure, because as long as you have a hierarchy defined as top-down you will not become agile.”
  • An Agile expert might say, “You need to start inspecting and adapting by using regular retrospectives in order to react flexibly, otherwise you will neither be able to learn from the market nor from within your company.”

All of these perspectives are true, but the perspective is always from within the discipline.

Our new perspective synthesizes these approaches and invites you to take a new, overview perspective that can truly address the challenges of doing business in a volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous world.

About the Author

Jutta Eckstein works as an independent coach, consultant, and trainer. She has helped many teams and organizations worldwide to make an Agile transition. She has unique experience in applying Agile processes within medium-sized to large-distributed mission-critical projects. Jutta has recently co-created an assessment for (agile) teams to gauge the environmental, social, and economic impact of their products and services. Besides that, she has published her experience in her books Company-wide Agility with Beyond Budgeting, Open Space & Sociocracy (dubbed BOSSA nova and pair-written with John Buck), Agile Software Development in the Large, Agile Software Development with Distributed Teams, Retrospectives for Organizational Change, and together with Johanna Rothman Diving for Hidden Treasures: Uncovering the Cost of Delay in your Project Portfolio. Jutta is a member of the Agile Alliance (having served the board of directors from 2003-2007) and a member of the program committee of many different American, Asian, and European conferences, where she has also presented her work. She holds an M.A. in Business Coaching & Change Management, a Dipl.Eng. (MSc.) in Product-Engineering, a B.A. in Education, and is trained as a pollution control commissioner on ecological environmentalism.

John Buck is an expert in the synthesis of Beyond Budgeting, Open Space, Sociocracy & Agile (BOSSA Nova) and President of GovernanceAlive. His clients span the globe and include plastics manufacturers, colleges and universities, long-term care facilities, co-housing groups, NGOs and 😉 also software companies. By guiding clients in “rewiring” their basic power structure he helps them toward greater efficiency and increased employee engagement. His background as a former large IT project manager makes him particularly adept at helping tech teams integrate this social technology to improve systems. The co-author of two books, John Buck wrote We the People: Consenting to a Deeper Democracy, along with co-authored with Sharon Villines, and in February 2018 published Company-wide Agility with Beyond Budgeting, Open Space & Sociocracy: Survive & Thrive on Disruption with co-author Jutta Eckstein. John has led many training workshops and sociocracy implementation projects for a variety of companies and organizations. John’s extensive global work has included a project with Fujitsu’s Advanced Software Lab to develop Weaver, software that helps meetings go better – in-person, online, and asynchronously. John has traveled to many countries to encourage the development of BOSSA nova through training, consultation, and presentations at conferences. He has also presented as a TEDx speaker. In a related initiative, he supports for Governance From Below, Inc., a charitable nonprofit that promotes neighbourocray, especially the Provisional World Children's Parliament, www.wcp.earth.