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56913Re: [scrumdevelopment] larman's laws of organizational behavior

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  • Markus Gärtner
    Jun 8, 2013
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      Dan North introduced the PARC acronym to me in January. It says that culture is the output of a system. In order to change the culture, you have to change the inputs to the system, which are people (number and skill-set), architecture (formal and informal), and routines (formal and informal).

      Scrum says much about the formal routines, and a bit about the formal structure (cross-functional team, plus PO, plus SM). It says not so much about up-skilling (though good teams find out that they have to do it), and you definitely want to have a coach present for preventing informal architectures and routines to take-over old habits which are not inside the new formal ways.

      I think this goes in the same direction.

      Best Markus

      Dipl.-Inform. Markus Gärtner
      Author of ATDD by Example - A Practical Guide to Acceptance
      Test-Driven Development

      On 08.06.2013, at 18:51, "craig.larman" <craig@...> wrote:

      this group might especially appreciate...

      ======== larman's laws of organizational behavior: 
      1. Organizations are implicitly optimized to avoid changing the status quo middle- and first-level manager and "specialist" positions & power structures
      2. As a corollary to (1), any change initiative will be reduced to overloading the new terminology to mean basically the same as status quo
      3. As a corollary to (1), any significant change initiative will be derided as "purist" and "needing customization for local concerns" -- which deflects from addressing weaknesses and manager/specialist status quo
      4. culture follows structure
      i.e., if you want to really change culture, you have to start with changing structure, because culture does not really change otherwise. and that's why deep systems of thought such as organizational learning are not very sticky or impactful by themselves, and why systems such as scrum (that have a strong focus on structural change at the start) tend to more quickly impact culture. i discovered that john seddon also observed this: "Attempting to change an organization's culture is a folly, it always fails. Peoples' behavior (the culture) is a product of the system; when you change the system peoples' behavior changes."


      you can also find them at:

      regards, craig
      co-author of:
      -Practices for Scaling Lean & Agile Development: Large, Multisite & Offshore Product Development with Large-Scale Scrum
      -Scaling Lean & Agile Development: Thinking and Organizational Tools for Large-Scale Scrum
      -Agile and Iterative Development: A Manager's Guide

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