Flow … a new handbook for fast and agile changemakers

October 23, 2017

Every enterprise needs to transform and become business agile. Flow is a handbook for how to go about finding that elusive business agile culture. The book is a step-by-step digital transformation guide, showing you how to become more collaborative, inventive and slicker at delivering the right products to your customers.

“Flow” recasts agility as a core business requirement and shows you how to get there using techniques that the authors have pioneered through their own customer-centric, highly visual, collaborative and interactive techniques.

How you go about empowering people to work better is one of the most difficult challenges in the modern workplace. It can be traced back to how we design work. All “frameworks” are really structures, or hierarchies, of work. All structures lead from a high level idea, or work area, to a low level task or unit of work.

Project management is the most entrenched hierarchy of all. Scrum is not far behind. They provide benefits but have drawbacks. It is contradictory to empower people them give them rules to follow.

Flows principles of empowerment:

1. Smart people will create their own rules if they have the right guidance. In Flow we encourage value-seeking behaviour at all stages of work.  We want to be agile so we can find and deliver value. Value has traditionally been interpreted as less waste. We are pro-value. Pro-value ideals guide the work breakdown process.

2. To be pro-value you have to start with customers even before you think of products. You need to have a constant feel for how markets are changing and be ready to deliver, at pace. But you also need customers in your feedback loops so their experience informs work design and strategy.

3 .Because you have to work at pace, we aim to work in two-day cycles or less. The benefit is constant interaction guided by value. Because innovation is now more matrix-like, the level of interaction opens up the power and collective intelligence of the crowd.

The “Flow” book

Think of the matrix of innovation going on in your organisation. You need that to flow like a calm, wide, and deep river.

“Flow” helps with that challenge. And what’s important to grasp is:

  • It really does not need a huge amount of time to learn;

  • It is short on rituals and rules;

  • But you do have to create trust and win trust;

  • Which makes it a different deal for leaders.

Fin Goulding and Haydn Shaughnessy’s new book “Flow: A Handbook for Change-Makers” offers 12 Steps to “Flow” to guide people through the implementation process. Flow can be picked up quickly by anyone with a background in agile, though it does need some training.

It will teach you how to accelerate the pace and scope of innovation by integrating Agile and Lean methodology with new principles of continuous innovation.

The major benefits are:

  • Ultra-short cycle times
  • More value, less waste
  • Startup-style pivot ability
  • Process innovation at pace