Agile Innovation has become a buzz word for many business executives; everyone wants to do more of it, but few are quite sure how to. But what exactly is Agile Innovation?

The term Agile first emerged in late 90s and was developed by IT managers who needed smarter ways to execute projects.  

However, what started as a set of principles for developing software, is now being widely applied to other areas of business. In its simplest form, agile is being able to do things quickly and easily. Agile Innovation is about speed, efficiency, flexibility, focus, collaboration and reducing risk. 

Current versions of Agile date back to 2001 when the Agile Manifesto was put together by a group of experts who were looking at better ways of delivering software and were frustrated with the inability to do things on time, on budget, and to delight customers.

The Agile Manifesto emphasizes:

  1. Customer satisfaction by rapid delivery of useful software
  2. Welcome changing environments, even late in development
  3. Working software is delivered frequently (weeks rather than months)
  4. Working software is the principal measure of progress
  5. Sustainable development, able to maintain a constant pace
  6. Close, daily co-operation between business people and developers
  7. Co-location: face to face conversation is the best form of communication
  8. Projects are built around motivated individuals, who should be trusted
  9. Continuous attention to technical excellence and good design
  10. Simplicity – the art of maximizing the amount of work not done – is essential
  11. Self-organizing teams
  12. Regular adaptation to changing circumstances

Over the last decade, there has been an increasing need to apply the benefits of Agile Innovation, beyond the original usage of software development. Markets are faster, tougher and less predictable with a lot more competition. There are many more uncertainties and risk in new product development, and true innovation is much harder to come by. Speed and agility are key in these fast-paced, ever changing markets. What was needed was a faster and more flexible approach that can handle dynamic and innovative projects.

The Benefits of Agile Stage-Gate:

Gets the product right. Agile Stage Gate requires the team to develop a physical product and get it in front of customers early on, often and cheaply. As Steve Jobs famously said, “People don’t know what they want until you show it to them”, especially in the case of more innovative products.

Accelerates Development.  Using time boxed-sprints and time-boxed tasks you can speed up the development project and increase a sense of urgency. Teams move quickly though sprints and deliver results in weeks rather than months.

Flexible, faster response to change and faster revisions.

Improved Focus. Teams are dedicated 100 per cent to one project. This ensures the teams have better focus and adequate resources to get the work done.  

Improves Communication and Productivity. Dedicated teams working together in one room, and face-to-face daily scrums all contribute to much improved communication and a better team morale.

For more information on how you can follow and implement the principles of Agile Innovation into your business and create real, lasting, long-term value, contact us, or register below to watch our on-demand Agile Innovation Webinar:

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 Stage-Gate International congratulates GenSight for certifying its software, on the Innovation Team Agility category of Stage-Gate Ready certification. Click HERE to read more.

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