Agile Governance: A Rock and a Hard Place?

Don is an entrepreneur and business leader with over 15 years experience specializing in aligning management-driven technologies and initiatives together with business and project strategies resulting in thoroughly planned and comprehensive business solutions. His expertise as a project manager, developer, tester, analyst, trainer, consultant, and business owner has spanned across diverse industries such as finance, retail, health care and information technology

A common idiom expressed in the English speaking world is a situation where you are faced with at least two situations, neither of which is pleasant. A common way of expressing this is saying you are “stuck between a rock and a hard place”. When you think of the words “agile” and “governance”, this idiom comes immediately to mind. Agile is about flexibility, adaptability and quick delivery through incremental and iterative processes, whereas governance (the corporate kind) is:

“The system of rules, practices and processes by which a company is directed and controlled. Corporate governance essentially involves balancing the interests of the many stakeholders in a company--these include its shareholders, management, customers, suppliers, financiers, government and the community. Since corporate governance also provides the framework for attaining a company's objectives, it encompasses practically every sphere of management, from action plans and internal controls to performance measurement and corporate disclosure.

[From: http://www.investopedia.com/terms/c/corporategovernance.asp]

These rules, practices and processes are usually controlled and managed by a PMO to ensure accountability and risk management of projects and resources of an organization (or department within an organization).

So combining agile …

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"If you have an apple and I have an apple and we exchange apples then you and I will still each have one apple. But if you have an idea and I have an idea and we exchange these ideas, then each of us will have two ideas."

- George Bernard Shaw

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