Author: Ananth Natarajan

Podcast – Managing an Agile Transformation for Success

Agile transformations, like any other are challenging for most organizations. This episode engages experts from PM Power Consulting J Veeraraaghavan, Vishveshwar Hegde and Anand Natarajan in dialogue, sharing their agile leadership coaching and consulting insights. The dialogue also explores common challenges and approaches to agile transformations for leaders and geographically distributed teams with diverse view points of the experts. The case study is given below Trailblazers Inc. have decided to embark on an Agile transformation journey with their SVP of Engineering. Mike Simpson, personally kicking off an initiative targeted at improving predictability, reducing cycle time and improving customer responsiveness. Mike wants Neeraj who is the VP of Engineering at their Bangalore development center to drive this initiative with Scrum as the primary approach and complete the transformation within the next one and a half years. Neeraj approaches you as an Agile coach to help him with defining and implementing a program that will ensure the success of this initiative.   To Summarize key aspects from the dialogue: Define specific objectives for this initiative based on senior leadership directive. Use a holistic approach (rather than just training) that considers where the organization and teams are currently with respect to the objectives and specific interventions such as training and coaching targeted at addressing the gaps identified Ensure senior leadership team at both locations has bought into the initiative and is fully...

Read More

CHOW #120 – Workacholic Manager

You joined this team couple of months back. You notice that your manager generally works very long hours  on week-days and comes to work on certain week-ends too. You are concerned that you would not get good appraisal if you do not work similar hours. Exercise: Would your concern be valid? Would you say that your manager’s family life is in doldrums? He is married and has two young children.   Suggested Solution: My response is: Yes – it would be, if you are someone who does not believe in working long hours. Perceptions and concerns like – my...

Read More

Five beacons for your leadership journey

Adolf Hitler would feature in most lists of leaders of all time, but I would not want to fashion my leadership journey around him, would you? The intent of this post is not to identify the right leader to emulate but define a few guiding lights. Based on my experience and my observation of a few leaders that I have been associated with, I have come up five beacons that could guide us in our journey. Here we go. Beacon #1: Unified Vision Leadership is typically associated with one’s career or profession. Over the years, I have learnt that...

Read More

CHOW # 105 – Uncertainty to Certainty

You are a program manager with an IT Service Provider handling a project for a U.S. based client. The client uses three different telecom service providers and pays large bills every month – for a few hundred thousand calls that cost them millions of dollars. Your client negotiates customized tariff plans with each of the telecom service providers (vendors) and keeps reviewing them periodically. Along with the summary of the bill, your client receives detailed call data records in the form of electronic data files from the telecom service providers. Client suspects that the telecom service providers are over-charging....

Read More

Facing uncertainty

In one of my earlier blogs, I had written about some of the thoughts that plague a manager’s mind (refer http://pm-powerconsulting.com/blog/thoughts-plague-managers-mind/). Top of the list was about the ability to make commitments and deliver on them in the face of uncertainty. I thought I will delve into that challenge a bit more and see how managers can handle the uncertainties. In today’s digital age projects, uncertainty is the norm. Even the customer does not seem to know the requirements; and you are building the software on the shifting sands of today’s technology; not to mention the pressure to deliver...

Read More