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Textbooks and Blueprints Aren't Synonymous, Why Diverging Can Be Better For You


“If roadmapping every quarter really sucks, then start doing it every three weeks, really examine what you need out of that session.” – Jordan Locke, @jordanlocke37 on Tik Tok.


When you go into an agile transformation, read all the books, watch videos, and learn what to do, there is a sense of wanting to do everything exactly as it says you should. But, just because the uniform textbook expresses that something ought to be done one way, doesn’t mean it necessarily has to be.


Have you ever worked in retail and noticed how nobody wants to do a shift swap, or cover for you, regardless of how unwell you are, because you’re on shift for the display change, when you have to haul stock from the back to the front, assemble the new displays and do all of this solo on the shop floor whilst serving customers. It’s not ideal for an individual worker, and to be on shift then is certainly drawing the short straw. Surely, an easier way to do this would be to put two members of staff on the floor? But, of course, everything has to be done by the book, and therefore it doesn’t matter whether you’ve scheduled fresh meat, or a seasoned worker to do the change, only one person works the shift on the floor.


TikTok user, @jordanlocke37, an agile coach with over 5000 followers on the app, actively shares a stream of content related to agile processes, breaking down the nature of each individual phase, asking and answering questions, and sharing her opinions off the back of trending sounds etc. This content, although niche, has allowed agile practice to potentially worm itself onto small business owner’s own platforms, and strike a chord with them. And, similarly, to how Kelly Toys used TikTok to market their own products, letting the algorithm and the trending hunt for the plush toys share new lines and products with a new audience, without having to pay for promotion, Locke is able to utilise her following to potentially increase her clientele


In a video she posted on 17th May 2021, Locke expressed that “if it’s hard, do it more often”, comparing the agile transformation to returning to the gym after time away. She explained that you can grow and learn from the experiences you and your team are having, adjust, change direction and make sure the steps you are making toward creating an agile workforce, are in fact, effective.


What you have to do is listen to what your body needs, when your limbs ache after the gym, if they hurt, they need to work out more, and grow. Just as when employees complain about being on the display change shift, maybe, what needs to be addressed is why and how the experience can be improved.


Your agile transformation is your own to construct around you, and although replicating the instructions of guides and textbooks is helpful in theory, not everything translates with the same ease in practical applications.



Based in London, U.K., and founded in 2016 by Arvind Mishra The Agile Works (www.TheAgileWorks.com), is an up-and-coming recruitment and Agile consulting company. Arvind is a Certified SAFe SPC and regularly delivers both private and public SAFe certification workshops.


He is a design thinking expert, Sr. enterprise, portfolio Agile Coach with over a decade of experience working as an Agile coach in diverse industries such as banking, pharma, retail, auto, oil, gas, consulting and government.


The Agile Works; a small team of three strive to help shape the leadership's mind-set and values in readiness for their business transformation journey challenges. With Arvind at the helm, we strive to provide you with the agility tools to make your company that can thrive, and not just survive.


To book a consultation, or for any enquiries, you can contact Arvind via the following email address: arvind@theagileworks.com

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