Companies that wish to become more agile cannot avoid engaging with the experiment of agile leadership, because it is the pre-requisite for agile work. It is about bringing employees together in independently organised teams, possibly also cross-functional teams, and enabling them not only to strive for solutions on their own initiative but also to take fast, process-based decisions. Unlike classic management methods, the manager places himself or herself at the service of the team. From a managing figure, he or she becomes an accompanying figure (“lateral management”), creates the basic conditions, co-ordinates the team and provides the resources. Even if agile management overrides the bureaucratic hierarchy, it cannot manage without rules and specifications. Thus it is ensured that the aims and independent decisions correspond with and simultaneously help to shape the ideas of the company. We have a lot of experience with transformation processes and shall be pleased to support you.
In order for agile leadership to lead to success, communication is required. Employees need clarity with regard to their own room for manoeuvre. The aims of the project must be discussed with the team and the individual performance targets of individual employees must be discussed together. Time planning is also jointly discussed. In addition, it must be ensured that the employees have access to all necessary information. Short-term feedback is just as important as a modern error culture in which mistakes are not punished but are discussed openly and constructively. Agile Leaders must also be able to communicate at all different levels and should also be trained in group dynamics and team development. Innovative agile leadership programmes of berliner team help with preparation for these tasks.
Agile transformation is only successful if managers actively exemplify the change. This may become a great challenge. The manager must behave in a new and different way in many situations. Whereas they empower employees to make independent decisions, the managers themselves lose influence and power. Hierarchical levels may also be abolished in the same way as titles. The management function becomes a support function. But this change also brings advantages. Instead of being tied to the operative business, the manager now has free capacities to be involved at the strategic level. The manager no longer works in the system but on it. Our tasks include promoting the managers’ understanding of and desire for this new role.