The Innovation Revolution — and how Enterprise Scrum will help

The Innovation Revolution is about innovating in everything we do within a company. It is larger than Digitization or The Creative Economy, and it will be powered by Business Agility techniques, Business Agility frameworks like Enterprise Scrum, and Business Agility transformations.

But what is business agility? Business agility is about (in prioritized order):

  • making all people involved happier: customers, users, employees, executives, stakeholders, etc. Higher customer satisfaction is a good goal, but not at the price of other people’s unhappiness.
  • developing, doing, learning, improving and deciding things better, faster, and more effectivity
  • faster growth (customer satisfaction, profits, revenue, employee happiness, etc.)
  • all-at-once continuous development and management
  • more disruptive faster efficient and more effective innovation, rather than sustaining innovation or operational efficiency
  • implemented with more decentralized, radically decoupled, and flatter organizations that have dense social interactions within its members

Enterprise Scrum is a way to achieve this, because Enterprise Scrum is not only a “scaling framework”, it includes genericity — the ability to manage anything in a more agile way.

One key aspect of this new way of working is that we don’t use phase-based approaches to work any more; instead, we need rapid feedback, that leads to rapid improvement in anything we do.

For me personally, the mindset change started some 15 years ago when I was CEO of New Governance, because to be able to better satisfy customers’ needs, we had to change the way we did contracting since 2001, and move on from selling enterprise licenses or software/service versions, to continuously delivered subscriptions. Over time, we have used this Scrum way of thinking and working for everything else, because we realized the world is changing far too fast to work in “phase mode” in almost ANY activity.

So in today’s world almost everything is “under development”:

- companies

- startups

- innovation

- portfolios

- business units (business strategy)

- customer-segments (marketing, sales, customer service)

- compliance

- HR

- finance

- investments

- etc.

So in the 21st Century we should not only be doing all-at-once software development, we should also be doing all-at-once business management.

Executives and the CEO (Chief Executive Office), should stop “executing” phase-based plans, and instead put everything under development. Good startups don’t execute business plans any more — they co-develop and co-evolve everything they do: customers, products, markets, financial models, business models, etc. In today’s world, companies should avoid C-level executives with functional focus: CEO, CFO, COO, CCO, CIO, CTO, C?? — Sloan (functional) management is outdated, unfit, and should be deemed obsolete in today’s fast changing environment.

To cope with this massive exponential increase in the rate of change, the genericity aspects of Enterprise Scrum can really help in agilizing everything: the Wave Principle, the Value List attributes, the Cycle attributes can work together to agilize anything. As of this writing, and to my knowledge, Enterprise Scrum is the only agile framework that includes genericity (the ability to manage anything in an agile way).

The world-wide Business Agility wave is now starting to sweep each and every industry. The multi-national dinosaurs and the Unicorns are going first apparently: I am working now with 3 banks, 2 healthcare, 1 manufacturer, 1 service company, several Unicorns, and Unicorns-to-be, etc.; and getting phone calls every day with people desperately looking for help in the Business Agility transformations. Looks like we will have to do massive hiring and partnering in 2017.

Some predictions about the Innovation Revolution, Business Agility and Enterprise Scrum:

1) Massive disruption waves will revamp all industries worldwide: FinTech, InsurTech, EneryTech, DigiTech, HealthTech, PharmTech, etc.

2) Business agility transformations will sweep each and every industry starting 2016 — the dominoes are starting to fall everywhere

3) Most everything will be managed in an Agile way within 10 years — this will be the largest and fastest management transformation ever. Wealth has never been created, transformed or destroyed this fast.

4) Rampant innovation will continue and accelerate: Unicorn density will increase, time-to-Unicorn will continue to decrease

5) Software agility and digitization transformations will be absorbed and replaced with broader by business agility transformations

6) True Agile methods will be used as de facto for Agile transformations: OpenSpace Agility, Enterprise Scrum (transformation), Scrum@Scale, etc.

7) Growing unicorns and transformed “agile dinosaurs” that grow and manage through “preserved agility” will dominate the landscape 10 years from now

8) 75% of all S&P companies will be replaced by 2017

9) There will other business agility frameworks that copy the genericity aspects of Enterprise Scrum (that is the ultimate compliment “getting robbed” )

10) New business management techniques will replace functional specialties once and for all: DT, BOS, LS, BMG/VPD, BB, ZTW, ExpO, M3.0, MfH, etc. If you don’t know these acronyms by now, you should! Look them up!

11) New educational programs will take over standard ones. There will be NEW “21st Century MBAs” ( — John Miller coined the term!) == “Management of Business Agility”, not “Masters of Business Administration”.

12) Historians will call this era the Innovation Revolution (beyond and above “Creation Economy”). This is how I started calling it 8 years ago. The WEF (World Economic Forum) calls it the 4th Industrial Revolution. I like my name better.

Courses and certifications on Enterprise Scrum will be available starting January of 2017 at the Scrum Alliance web site: http://www.scrumalliance.org

Mike Beedle

CEO, Enterprise Scrum Inc.