1 1 Adam Michalczyk

In our everyday consultancy job we meet  dozens of people across the organisations we work at. We think that what we do is “bringing value to the customer”. But do we do it the right way? Are we setting the standard high enough? What does the “value bringing” mean? We can get to some interesting conclusions while looking for answers to those questions.

Do i live by what i try to influence in others?

Well this question is easy, isn’t it? Obviously “I know agility”, I’ve run a few teams and now I am advicing others. I share my knowledge and expertise. I teach. But after a three months of work for a client am I able to show what measurable, empirically perceptible benefits he has gained? Was he the one who gained those profits or were it the people working for him? Or maybe “thanks” to my advice people believe that the organisation is the source of all evil? Do I actually do, or do I just give advice and criticize? Do I respect time of the organisation I work for by not being late for meetings? Am I open enough in communication with those I influence? Am I building relations with those who have different opinions/views/ways of working than I have?

Do i understand my clients definition of the success of our work?

Yep, they want Scrum and Agility and that’s what I’m teaching them. This is what I get paid for – am I right? They want to shorten Time-To-Market and improve their effectiveness. They want creativity and innovation. Aha, aha. But do I know how I will recognise working agility in this organisation? Does this organisation actually need innovation if it’s been sitting on a ten years old barrel of technological debt? Does my client know that to change the organisation he, himself, will have to fundamentally change his way of thinking because he is the creator of the organisational culture he is fighting with? Does my client know that the way to pay off technical debt leads through a very rocky path of downturn and huge expenses?

Am i using empirical tools to measure my effectiveness?

Yes please, I’d love to. Certainly, always, very, absolutely! Yet the organisation I work with is not a beautiful and unique snowflake in the immensity of galaxy far, far away. Well yes, I am using one specific model I’ve once learned. It doesn’t really work for my client but it shows him how bad and wrong his situation is. There’s no way he’s gonna get out of this without help from consultants. But maybe we could use one or two metrics? Yeah, right – they will only show a part of reality. But that’s the thing – they will force us to make a choice followed by focus – and that is what we actually need. If we try to fix everything at once we will never finish. Never.

 When i’m done will there be more people having my knowledge in the world?

Of course! I’ve done few trainings, haven’t I. I told them how it should all work. But have I been focused on those few people that will become agents of the change? Have i come across those, who will become the key-change-components but they were hard to cooperate with? Do I only work with people that I find similar to me? Am I actually awakening potential in people?

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