Saturday, March 1, 2008

γνωθι σεαυτόν - Know thyself

There is an ancient Greek aphorism that says: "Gnothi Seauton" (Know yourself). By ultimately understanding oneself is key for understanding what are our capabilities, our potential and understanding others as well.
Organizations are like humans too. There is a great book that states that every company has its own personality and according to its personality the organization is going to react in different environments.
(Companies are people, too. Discover, develop and Grow your Organization's true personality - Sandra Fekete with LeeAnna Keith)

Today I am analyzing how one organization manage multiple projects. Not surprisingly, I have noticed that while some organization appears to be reluctant to struggle among multiple projects, others are so eager to take advantage of the opportunities that many times losses all.

Probably one of the scariest but more benefitial effects on the upper management when the organization adopts a transparent, reliable Scrum framework is that the real organization capability is exposed. That means that all the stakeholders are now aware of the organization abilities, capabilities and bandwidth to absorb projects at the same time.

Where the limit is? - The overblown juggler analogy

One Juggler can deal with multiple balls according to his/her juggling skills, training, concentration, environment, etc. Multiple factors affect the amount of balls that one juggler can deal with.

Organizations are like humans too. And some organizations have to deal with multiple projects like a juggler.

The juggler does know his limitation, can be 3, 4, 5... 20, whatever number it is, there is a limit while juggling.

The concequences of jugging with more balls than possible have only a simple output: none ball in the air, all balls dropped.

Organizations might sadly discover this limit when they figure out that the delta added value to every project in paralel is not enough for getting anything done at all.

Here is the importance for every organization to create a healthy product porfolio. The same as stories, product must have a PRIORITY and organizations must understand their value, cost, knowledge point and risks in every case for treat them properly.

If the organization accept more work than its capabilities permit, then is going to suffer the overblown juggler effect: projects dropped, nothing at hand.

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