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Insights by Agilicist

Productivity: 3 Reasons Your Teams Aren't Getting Results

“The teams aren’t productive enough!”

At Agilicist, we hear this a lot from senior management.

And usually it’s because of one of these 3 things:

Insufficient Clarity

Teams need a clear understanding of what they are doing, and why they are doing it.

If they don’t have that, they get distracted by low priority work, they duplicate effort, things fall through the cracks and there is confusion which results in delays, waste and a hard time achieving goals.

If your teams are resorting to endless emails, Slack messages and status update meetings, chances are, there is a lack of systemic clarity.

Lack of Commitment

Teams that lack commitment tend to delay making important decisions and often miss opportunities. They often grind to a stand-still.

This lack of commitment can stem from a fear of conflict - if team members haven’t been able to debate and discuss ideas, they haven’t had the opportunity to negotiate disagreements. It then becomes much harder to make decisions as alternative points of view haven’t been considered.

Lack of Perceived Progress

“We are 90% done”. Heard that one before? That work will be 90% done for weeks.

If you’re a stakeholder relying on a Gantt chart for progress updates you’re bound to think the team aren’t productive, even if they are operating in a more agile fashion.

But often in some of the larger organisations that Agilicist have been asked to help with, teams have traditionally been setup to work on large batches of work, practice task-based planning, time-tracking and reporting.

These teams almost always experience the feeling of stagnation, particularly if the urgency around a delivery drops. As their progress stalls, they lose momentum, and as they lose momentum, they become disengaged and their productivity drops.

Productivity is important.

Organisations need their teams to be productive - but they need to also remember that we aren’t living in the 19th and 20th Century anymore.

Productivity is no longer about increasing output necessarily, it’s about increasing value delivery. Increasing outcomes.

And to do that, you need to create the right environment for your teams, and that's what we help companies do.


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