We hear so much that we can’t make predictions in complex adaptive systems that we
- Product managers pushing more work on their teams than they can handle
- People working on multiple projects projects being staffed by part time people
- People working on large (3 months or more) batches of work
- Teams being motivated to focus on their own interests
- Managers micro-managing their teams
- No planning across the teams that need to work together
- Product quality is low
When you see these things I suggest you can readily predict the results. And that you can reasonably accurately predict improvement if you improve them. The question is how? But the first step is seeing these issues.
What’s forgotten in the complexity conversations is that seeing what our problems are is looking in the past – which complexity theory does not say we can’t do. We can see cause and effect after the fact. While we can’t accurately predict what our changes will be, we can accurately see what’s causing our problems.