We live in a digital era and there is no doubt about that. Most of us have the newest mobile devices, smartphones and have a tendency to stay online almost 24 hours a day. The advanced technology has made people transition from using desktop to smartphones which resulted in creating new technologies. It sounds like a vicious circle where the only certain thing to happen next is CHANGE. Randi Zuckerberg, one of my favourite digital authors working in Silicon Valley and a sister of the famous Mark Zuckerberg (one of five co-founders of Facebook) said: “Technology is not the End – It’s the Means… and especially nowadays it’s no longer tech world – it’s simply modern living“.
For me “digital” does not mean a department in our organisation but a state of mind. I think the main reason why people are becoming digital is not because they spend more and more time online with each day but also because they must adjust to changes. For example when a new technology is being used, they need to learn it and adjust to it. Being digital is about accepting and adjusting to changes which is also means being agile. A word “agile” is described as: quick in movement and nimble. In other words it is reacting readily to a changing environment, environment of new technologies and simply modern living.
In the world of advertising it is particularly important to become agile and that’s why in 1995 Ken Schwaber and Jeff Sutherland officially presented Agile development process and Scrum as a part of it. I think it was a great move because not only in software development but also non-IT projects you need to be flexible and manage a never-ending flow of incoming client requirements. For example a project never stays the same and changes are inevitably unpredictable and you always know they will happen along the way.
That’s why you need to accept the fact that requirements and customer needs will evolve throughout a project so that you are able to manage the changes, not prevent them. There’s a wide range of agile methods that can be used everywhere where change is about to happen. The Agile project management defines an iterative approach to planning mostly in software development. This is true but we cannot forget it can be applied to any other project where you assess a change is likely to occur and repeat. Therefore, industries taking the most out of Agile are definitely: IT, but also sales, marketing, HR as well as the whole organisations. It’s important to remember that a whole organisation needs to participate in their Agile transformation. It’s not an effort of the IT department but all teams and senior leadership teams who need to support agile teams and their agile ways fo working. Moreover, they need to change as first. the typical managers need to become servant leaders and understand their role in a wider context of self-organising, empowered, motivated teams.