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Opinion

Need of the Hour - Lean and Agile Teams

Team YS
2nd May 2012
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Continuing my thoughts on business, its definition, evolution and sustainability, I would like to delve on trends which are prevalent in cutting work force count or axing training budgets whenever there are recessionary trends. But, are organizations taking into consideration the negative impacts that these steps are attracting?

I am certainly of the opinion that business is adding value, and not charity. It is not the firefighting measures taken and their efficacy that I am interested in writing about, but on what might be the more appropriate preventive initiatives to avoid getting into situations which force organizations to take these steps.


lean

Problem Statement:

In our globalized and interconnected economy, organizations need to manage with dynamic market conditions, customer demands, technologies, availability of resources and costs. Most organizations have taken the path to recruit, to handle these pressures and resolve the same. But this approach brings with it the inevitable need to retrench, when the going gets tough.

Change, having become an inevitable constant in the ever dynamic business environment, raises the question, how does the organization adapt its strategies and plans keeping its human capital up to date to ensure that the long term business goals are reached?

The only solution to this is to be transparent and make executives empowered and more engaged in their work processes and continually inviting suggestions for improvement.

Competency Frameworks:

Each position or role in an Organization should be assigned a requisite set of competencies along with the skill level that the incumbent executive should possess for effectively carrying out his / her responsibilities. Recruitment based on interview rating sheets, to assess the interviewee against the specific requirements of the position, and regular reviews of executives based on a 360 degree assessment of the executive on the applicable competencies, shall significantly contribute to effective deployment of training resources for maximizing the organizational readiness.

Clear indicators can be provided to recruiting agencies or campuses on the expectations from the job applicants, and induction programs designed to effectively orient the recruits live up to the functional and behavioral aspects of the roles that they are recruited for.

Employee Engagement:

To fight against attrition and rising costs of new recruits, it is a proven fact that retaining the existing work force through suitable measures like having the right organization culture, proper succession and career planning measures in place and identifying ways to synchronize individual participants and organization goals, etc. would go a long way to ensure engaged employees and high morale in the human capital thereby ensuring that no stone is left unturned to make the business goals come true.

Participative Management:

Having a proper system in place, where the executives can know where they stand and make suitable requests for intended trainings to help advance their career based on expectations of various positions in the organization, would make them feel empowered in driving their careers and also inculcate a feeling of ownership which should significantly help in binding the executive to the organization. Similarly, collecting inputs from executives whenever they take up a new role within the organization and debated by co-participants who interact with that role, would help the executive to clearly develop an understanding of the responsibilities of the role being taken up and a sense of ownership which also brings in a sense of responsibility and effectively results in his true performance in the best organizational interests.

These measures would facilitate lean teams effectively perform the roles and positively contribute to ensure achievement of business goals. Across the globe, lean and agile teams are what are effectively proving more successful and not necessarily only in the software development industry.

About the Author

Ravi Kumar Chava


Ravi Kumar Chava

Ravi (Kumar) Chava, CEO at Metier Software Solutions

Currently involved in web enabling business processes by developing web applications to take business processes online enabling executives to access and process business requirements from where ever they are.

Developed and deployed HR portal which includes executive offer letter to separation letter online, appraisals, counseling, competency assessment and succession planning, training scheduling and tracking for M/s Coromandel International Limited, a Rs. 10,000 crore flagship enterprise of Murugappa Group. Other products include invoice tracking system, vendor indent and delivery tracking, HR Metrics, Fertilizer Control Order - Product Failure and legal action tracking, etc.

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