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Dysfunction of Teams and Agile

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Dysfunction of Teams and Agile

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Agile teams are by now the best teams any organization wants to have. They are self-organized, continuous learning attitude, have good team bonding, and have a complete sense of accountability for their work. Agile teams are more performing compared to traditional teams. But as traditional teams have some dysfunction do agile teams also carry some? Like any other teams’ agile teams also have some dysfunction that is not as basic as traditional teams but needs to be overcome them. As in an agile project, any small factor is important and may cause derail. As a leader, you must be able to identify the dysfunctions of a team, address them and avoid them creating an obstacle to the productivity of a team. The dysfunctions of agile teams are of mainly five types. As every team consists of fallible people as members to some extent, so every team experiences dysfunction to one or another extent.

Agile teams are by now the best teams any organization wants to have. They are self-organized, continuous learning attitude, have good team bonding, and have a complete sense of accountability for their work. Agile teams are more performing compared to traditional teams. But as traditional teams have some dysfunction do agile teams also carry some? Like any other teams’ agile teams also have some dysfunction that is not as basic as traditional teams but needs to be overcome them. As in an agile project, any small factor is important and may cause derail. As a leader, you must be able to identify the dysfunctions of a team, address them and avoid them creating an obstacle to the productivity of a team. The dysfunctions of agile teams are of mainly five types. As every team consists of fallible people as members to some extent, so every team experiences dysfunction to one or another extent.

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Dysfunction of Teams and Agile

  1. 1. Dysfunction of Teams and Agile
  2. 2. Agile teams are by now the best teams any organization wants to have. They are self-organized, continuous learning attitude, have good team bonding, and have a complete sense of accountability for their work. Agile teams are more performing compared to traditional teams. But as traditional teams have some dysfunction do agile teams also carry some? Like any other teams’ agile teams also have some dysfunction that is not as basic as traditional teams but needs to be overcome them. As in an agile project, any small factor is important and may cause derail. As a leader, you must be able to identify the dysfunctions of a team, address them and avoid them creating an obstacle to the productivity of a team. The dysfunctions of agile teams are of mainly five types. As every team consists of fallible people as members to some extent, so every team experiences dysfunction to one or another extent.
  3. 3. Five Dysfunctions of Agile Teams Lack of Trust The very first dysfunction among team members is an absence of trust. Team members who are not ready to be open about their mistakes and weakness with the team create this dysfunction within a team. The team members are generally under peer pressure as they are always judged on their past abilities and mistakes. This avoids creating liability level trust in team members. Agile prefers face-to-face communication among team members as well as stakeholders. Fear of Conflict The teams who lack trust in each other are incapable of engaging in debates and putting unfiltered ideas among the team as it results in conflicts or because of fear of conflict the team members put guarded comments and discuss being too conscious. This further leads the team in damaging its progress and decision-making ability. Agile always prefers teams who involve in a productive and open discussion where team members do not have the fear of considering them wrong or any conflicts.
  4. 4. Lack of Commitment When teams do not have healthy conflicts within themselves it leads to the third dysfunction of teams which is creating a lack of commitment. As team members are not open to expressing their ideas and thoughts on the project or decision making they always feel like a third person and rarely feel committed to the decision taken. Team members who do not trust each other always avoid working together even if they do they will never agree to share common commitments. Agile prefers a team that commits together to every task and decision taken combine as they create clarity, align teams, and establish an ability to learn from mistakes. Accountability Avoidance When team members lack a commitment to the objectives and goals of a decision taken then the avoidance of accountability is developed among team members. When team members lack trust in each other and there is no feeling of commitment towards the goal they lack the motivation to complete it and put personal goals or own piece of work above the common goal. This leads to the common objective of the project being at a lower position and hence bringing the team downward. When agile teams own accountability they try to bring up the poor performers of the team to the same page and help each other achieve the common goal. They discuss each other’s approach to working without hesitation and also work together to higher the team's standard.
  5. 5. Inattention to Results When the above dysfunction is integrated into team members to some extent it leads to creating the fifth dysfunction in a team that is inattention to result where every team member puts their individual needs and requirements above the team's collective goals. When team members put their progress above and neglect the team’s objectives they face problems achieving the team’s commitment. As developing software or any of the business is now a day a collective work more than that of individual works this inattention to results will bring team backward. Agile teams that work collectively with cross-function knowledge toward the common goals and objectives and put the team above themselves such teams enjoy success and decrease failure. To know that your team is going through any of the above dysfunction is to listen and observe the statements or similar ones mentioned by the team members below. “I am the only one best at it and only I know the code.” “I am not entitled or responsible to do it, ask others for help.” “I am the only one who completed my work; other team members are still working.” “We can go with whatever process makes sense for us, let's not think what our coach thinks.” “We are at top of others why should we improve now.” By understanding the dysfunctions within teams and using agile concepts and processes by understanding and utilizing it fully any team can avoid dysfunction and improve the team's trust, accountability, responsibility, unity, and productivity in an organization.
  6. 6. About Advance Agility We, at Advance Agility, are the new-age Agile Coaching, Consulting and IT services company. We enable end-to-end Digital Transformation. Agile execution is integral to our being. We are doing SAFe implementation with small, medium and large organization across the globe. Our vision is to be the leading Agile execution player globally. To keep adding value at every process stage. We are on a mission to empower our clients, move from concept to cash in the shortest sustainable lead time by adopting human centric approach to business agility. Embracing the change is in our DNA. Things that keep us apart are Quicker and Seamless execution with End-to-end gamut of services. Our Global presence and Stellar Track Record give us an edge over our competitor. Connect with us at advanceagility.com to learn about SAFe and SAFe Implementation. We provide various SAFe certification courses along with DevOps, Scrum, Agile Coaching and more trainings. Write to us a contact@advanceagilty.com for any agile training or consulting needs. We are always looking for competent agile trainers as well. So if you are a good trainer or want to become one, do get in touch with us to that we can learn, grow and achieve together.

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