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Scenario Planning: Supplementing Traditional Strategic Planning

It is clear the rate of change in today's work environments has been aggravating with more emphasis nowadays on smaller teams, incremental and rapid delivery, faster payback, and frequent project status reporting. This acceleration has instigated uncertainty that forced organisations to start supporting their strategic planning with a longer term perspective of planning called scenario planning or scenario thinking/analysis. Scenario ...

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A Simple Method to Split a WordPress Post into Multiple Pages

A Simple Method to Split a Wordpress Post into Multiple Pages

One of the most effective ways to increase the number of page views and decrease the bounce rate of your site is by splitting your long posts into several pages. In the first part of the article, you will learn in 2 steps how to split a post in Wordpress using the codex function wp_link_pages() and the <!––nextpage––> tag. In the second ...

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Boosting Your WordPress Site’s Performance By Enabling GZIP Compression

Boosting Your Wordpress Site's Performance By Enabling GZIP Compression

Ever heard of GZIP? It is a simple software application that compresses/decompresses files based on an algorithm named DEFLATE. It works by finding similar strings in a text file and replacing them temporarily to make the overall file size smaller which would drastically improve the performance of your website. The algorithm perfectly works with CSS and HTML filetypes which typically ...

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Improving Quality of Project Estimation

It is clear that estimating a project is important for the project manager to determine how long the project would take, to figure out how much the project would cost, to decide whether the project is worth doing, to measure variances against the baseline plan, and to take corrective actions. However some project managers nowadays tend to put minimum effort ...

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Avoiding Common Pitfalls of High Performance Project Teams

Previously in one of my earlier articles, I discussed the key qualities required for a project manager to be effective in building a high performance project team. Believe it or not, though high performance project teams can produce incredible outcomes, there still remain some serious pitfalls that project managers need to be aware of in order not to fall victims ...

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Contract Management Must-Knows For Project Managers

Contract management constitutes a major component of a project procurement system. Most work done nowadays on projects involves dealing with contracts or has a contractual nature. Although some companies have purchasing departments that specialize in procurement, one of the basic knowledge and skills of a project manager is to be able to read and manage contracts. This post basically discusses ...

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Understanding And Managing Your Boss

The idea of “managing your boss” may sound quite unusual for some managers, considering the widespread adoption of the traditional top down management approach in most organizations. Even though talented and aggressive managers nowadays carefully control and administer their subordinates, services, and products, they might reveal, on the other hand, a passive stand with their bosses (Gabarro and Kotter 1993). ...

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Changes in Project Management Processes Between PMBOK 4 And PMBOK 5

This post presents a tabulated summary of differences in the names, inputs, tools, and outputs of project management processes between PMBOK 4 and PMBOK 5. Note that terms in Red which exist in PMBOK 4 have been removed or replaced in PMBOK 5, terms in Blue have been newly added into PMBOK 5, and terms in Black have not ...

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Critical Analysis of Porter's Five Forces Model - Information Technology (IT) Industry

In order to appropriately formulate their corporate strategies and distinctively compete in the market, organizations are in a need for a framework that would help them in understanding industry structure and in overcoming rivalry. This essay aims at discussing, analyzing, and criticizing Porter’s Five Forces model using a wide variety of academic literature. The first part introduces the model, discusses ...

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Key Qualities For An Effective Project Manager

This post describes key qualities needed for an effective project manager. It discusses the differences between leading and managing a project, explains the importance of managing stakeholders, describes how to gain influence by reciprocity, stresses on the significance of leading by example and managing by wandering around (MBWA), explores how to deal with the contradictory nature of work, and finally ...

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Home > Project Management > The Need For Hybrid Agile: An Ambidextrous Organization

The Need For Hybrid Agile: An Ambidextrous Organization

December 25th, 2012
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It is clear that the adaptability nature of agile practices has changed the face of project management today. The adoption of agile systems development has been increasing lately in the industry due to reported benefits from increased productivity, learning, and business satisfaction, and due to the need for flexibility and innovation in responding to change (Fernandez and Fernandez 2008). However, some adopters have posited that agile might not be adequate for all types of projects and should only be applied to those where it would add value, which means that other traditional non-agile methodologies are still in need for coexistence. This creates the necessity to properly match the project management approach to the project in hand to achieve success (Fernandez and Fernandez 2008).

In addition, contrary to agile purists’ beliefs, applying agile does not mean following roughly all its principles. Organizations transitioning to agile should gradually incorporate the principles that best fit with their cultural needs and commitments. This has introduced the concept of what we call today “hybrid agile”, which is an adaptive approach that mingles agile with other methods tailored to the situational and business needs. Based on statistics from 2011 Agile ALM and Testing Survey, 28 percent of 450 software professionals said they use a hybrid approach. Another study conducted by Analysis.net and VersionOne has shown that out of 4770 respondents from 91 countries, 35 percent mix Agile with Waterfall and 39 percent mix Agile with Scrum (Gale 2012).

The pragmatic need for realizing the stability-adaptability duality balance and for gradually improving for a better agile environment posits challenges on the organization to adjust its people, culture, management, and process to be capable of executing projects using agile and/or non-agile methodologies. Since preparing an organizational culture to accept and implement agile practices might take several years, organizations need to manipulate their structures in a way to gain the welfares of the heterogeneous cultures resulting from the application of agile and non-agile methodologies (Vinekar, Slinkman et al. 2006).

Vinekar and Slinkman (2006) have proposed an ambidextrous organizational form that helps in surmounting these challenges. This organization has two types of subunits, an agile subunit and a traditional subunit. Each subunit, which addresses agile or traditional methodologies based on its type, is separated from the other, but is integrated together through the strategic goals and objectives. The ambidextrous organization opts for the subunit that is most aligned with the client’s cultural characteristics, which for instance define the ability in prioritizing features, providing feedback, specifying requirements upfront, and collaborating actively and tacitly. So if the client favors formal and detailed specifications upfront with the least feedback possible throughout the course of the project, than the traditional subunit would be a noble choice.

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  1. Ganesh N
    March 27th, 2013 at 18:11 | #1

    Hope you found my article useful.. I saw all your posts in ur blog. It is informative. Keep blogging.

    • Ihab Sarieddine
      March 27th, 2013 at 18:33 | #2

      Thanks for your interests in reading the content, hope it has been a benefit!

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