Product leadership & structure

Improvement trap

Trends emerging in 2019

Looking back and reflecting on 2019, I have started to see some interesting trends related to Scrum and Agile emerging in many companies in Denmark and especially in other countries. And I see this will continue even more in 2020.


What will influence Scrum and Agile in 2020

I believe the emerging trends from 2019 will continue and influence how organizations in 2020 understand and use Scrum and Agile.

1. Scaling

scalingScaling is still a big thing, but more companies are also looking into what is after SAFe or what do they do to reduce the organizational complexity with too many dependencies etc. More and more people are looking into what guidance and inspiration they can get from LeSS, Nexus and other sources. Also many realize that working well on a team level is required for scaling to succeed. Scaling smaller problems on team level will give you huge problems on multi team level.

Companies more experienced and mature with Scrum and Agile also start to realize that is is about descaling the organizational complexity rather than scaling existing bureaucracy.

2. Product leadership & structure

productleadershipBetter product leadership focus with improved team structure is so important and more companies realize they need to have better product leadership, define their products from the outside in and not from the inside out (!) and change team structures to support that. It requires organizational changes!

You should start defining your products (from the outside in!) and then having a team structure supporting this.

Ask the questions:

  1. Are your optimizing and make decisions that makes your current team structure activated (sub-optimizing..)?
  2. Or do you have a whole product focus that enables you to make product decisions that enables users to solve their problems using the product?

Guidance can be found in LeSS (plus the CLP class) and also the newer classes like PSU and PSPO-A address several of the challenges.

3. The Improvement trap

goodtrapIt is hard to do changes and when a company push changes too fast and do it as a campaign (transformation?) to be completed during a specific time-frame, they often see a need to relax after the (change?)-campaign is completed.




It is typical a mindset-shift to have continuous improvement integrated more natural into the organization and many organizations end in the “forget and loose trap” illustrated below.

KaizenPulseFrom Hirotaka Takeuchi, et al. Extreme Toyota: Radical Contradictions That Drive Success at the World’s Best Manufacturer.