Communication & Collaboration
To be a great designer, you have to master the soft skills. A huge part of the job will involve stepping away from the design software of choice and dealing with people. Designers must be master communicators, possessing the confidence necessary to have the tough conversations. And they will happen. Designers need to know how to deal with stubborn stakeholders, tell people they are wrong and why, admit when they’re wrong, and master the art of explaining their design decisions. Designers must also learn the art of collaboration. Working with people in many different business roles means they have to quickly be able to understand others’ perspectives, what matters to them, and how they can contribute to the UX process. Also of importance is the ability to collaborate with other designers, which involves being able to quickly recognize each other’s strengths — and assign responsibilities accordingly.
While they understand how to run an “Agile shop” they often assume that making software is all the same. It’s not. A company that builds dating sites isn’t the same as a company that builds software for insulin pumps. That difference is huge in what it means to be agile. In order to accurately determine what the right process should be you need a good understanding of the problem space. This is something an Agile consultancy will never have. You’re far better off hiring a team lead that understands lean processes as well as your specific problem space.