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Tuesday, March 19 • 14:35 - 15:25
Beyond the double bind

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A new science of agile that brings unity through understanding
Thou shalt be agile ... and here is the method to do it. Agile has spread up to the point that it has almost become commoditized. Commoditization has come with a high price though. How we think we act, and how we tell others we act, is not how we actually act. This incongruence occurs when reasoning disconnects from intuition, especially in highly ideologized (emphasizing values and ideals) as well as highly rationalized (emphasizing quantification, logic and analysis) environments. The highly rational, quantified component of outcome-oriented agility as well as the idealization of the agile mindset/culture (through its values) proves to be a good breeding ground for incongruence, especially in large organizations. We “scale” agile; we “descale” through “big” reorganizations; we (different schools of agile) compete for trust … based on distrust; …
Incongruency creates distressing dilemmas. It leads to conflicting messages, putting people in a double bind: a successful response to one message results in a failed response to the other (and vice versa). Double binds are a source of cognitive dissonance, stress, disengagement and polarization. While they are a subtle form of control, our conjecture is that double binds will, as a fine example of policy resistance, ultimately threaten the growth of the agile industry. To overcome the double bind, agile has to be put on a new footing. Together we will explore how to integrate (agile) intuition and (agile) reasoning and provide a common conceptual framework underlying the very different schools of (agile) thought. It is nothing more, or nothing less, than a search for a new science of agile that brings unity through understanding. Not just a theoretical understanding, but a highly practical one at that.

Video & Slides

avatar for Patrick Steyaert

Patrick Steyaert

AKT, KCP, Okaloa
Patrick Steyaert is founder of Okaloa. As a creator of Okaloa Flowlab, he teaches and coaches agile thinking (before methods) by making use of business simulations. With his work on upstream, customer and discovery kanban he helps organizations to look at the end-to-end flow (from... Read More →

Tuesday March 19, 2019 14:35 - 15:25 GMT
Wilkes 2