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A Leader’s Massive Advantage: High-Performing Teams Rising to the Challenge

By Erik Cottrell | Aug 31, 2020 |  Agile Transformation,  Business Agility,  Leadership,  Team

A picture of the Blue Angels, a high-performing team, flying their US Navy jets.There’s a pattern in client conversations I’m having. Every client I’ve spoken to recently has guided our conversations to highlight how much better they see their teams responding to recent pandemic challenges because of their newly developed Agile capabilities. Every one. Every time.

I’ve reached out to some clients to just check-in. Some have generously checked in on me. I’ve asked others for help with references. Some are asking for our help in new ways. And every Zoom meeting has had a good chunk of time celebrating how pleased they are with their progress. Their high-performing teams are rising up in spite of the current circumstances.

They are quick to point out that their businesses have been affected by the downturn. In some cases, their business essentially stalled in Q2. Revenues were lost, key customers had to make hard choices that impacted every facet of their business. 

What’s different for these leaders is they recognize their high-performing agile teams now give them an advantage in the face of their (often) harsh reality. 

These leaders *know* their teams can adapt when news breaks. They are observing it firsthand. Their high-performing teams are quickly changing course, staying focused, collaborating even more intensely, facing hard lessons objectively, and learning quickly. Their Agile teams are resilient. And those teams are growing more resilient over time.

For some of our clients, not all of their teams were involved in their transformation. This means they see a stark difference in the teams that aren’t equipped to adapt. Those teams are having a harder time with the volatility. Those teams can’t adjust easily on nearly any level except aspiration. These teams want to respond quickly but simply aren’t equipped and, or, organized to do it. And leaders see the toll that takes on their people. 

And that’s the thing that stays with me. Having adaptable ways of working can have a dramatic impact on people. Same for not being adaptable.

While few of us are really happy right now, it’s been remarkable to see leaders experiencing joy in seeing their agile people adjusting and courageously exploring new paths forward. These high-performing teams have the skills and capabilities to do something about where they are headed. This is good for their people, their companies, and especially their customers. 

These leaders know they have an advantage. Their teams have a way to rise up and meet their challenges. 

And that’s a remarkable thing.

Our mission is to equip companies with the Agile capabilities they need to win in their market. Our aim is to accelerate the time it takes to get there. If you’d like to talk about your teams, we’re always happy to talk. You can easily reach us here: https://agilevelocity.com/contact/ 

2 Responses to “A Leader’s Massive Advantage: High-Performing Teams Rising to the Challenge”

  1. great article on the ability of agile teams to pivot. Many teams had not worked remotely before the pandemic. Kudos to the leaders, coaches, and scrum masters who taught agile principles that teams followed during these difficult times.

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