Podcast

Dr. Angela Crawford and Diane Egbers on Agile Leadership

In this podcast, Travis Nipper, is back in studio with Dr. Angela Crawford and Diane Egbers to discuss Agile Leadership.

Travis welcomes our two guests, our very own Diane Egbers and Dr. Angela Crawford, the Dean of the College of Business at Thomas More University. (1:00)

The group begins by introducing the topic of Agile Leadership, especially in an uncertain time like today. (2:00)

With all of the change in business lately, why is Agile Leadership important? Diane begins by sharing that there is a need for it in order to help business both survive and thrive. She talks about the disruptions that all have been accelerated dramatically and how new habits will be necessary to meet the changing customer needs. Angela adds that time expectations to supply products to people have changed and how sourcing is dramatically different. She pivots to education and how remote learning is such a big change that we have been forced to adapt to. Dr. Crawford notes that she has tried to focus on the good things like how technology has the capability of bringing us together. (2:32)

Dr. Crawford traces Agile Leadership back to the IT world. She breaks it down that agility within project management can be broken down into four parts that form a more collaborative approach. She defines these values as prioritizing individual interactions over processes and tools, working software over comprehensive documentation, customer collaboration over contract negotiation, and responding to change over following a plan. Further she provides aspects of Agile Leadership: adapt to the wants of customers, align to strategy plans, analyzing to ensure rapid improvement cycle, achieve and measure results, and aspire to leverage team empowerment. (6:15)

Diane jumps in to add that many parts of this framework is building on lessons many of us have learned in our business experience. She notes that there is great value that can be added by Agile Leadership. (11:23)

She goes further on this by noting that it helps us to be more customer value driven. Also, she talks about how much greater ability leaders have to be more strategic through internal development as well as looking externally. She goes on by saying that it fosters the humble, servant leadership aspect that allows leadership to be the best learners. Agile leadership creates a more adept culture that can handle change and rapid cycle improvement. Finally, we have constant empowered teamwork. (12:37)

Angela adds that this empowered teamwork allows each person to bring their greatest strengths to the table without having the fear to be openly creative. She says that it’s important to help our team move out of our state of fear in order to embrace ambiguity. (15:30)

Diane notes that the opposite of fear is faith. And with this, we can move our team to have faith that something new can work. Angela now looks at Agile Leadershipfrom a customer perspective, and anecdotally describes changing expectations in the business world. (16:45)

Travis brings up the online learning tool for leaders that the two have co-authored. Diane notes that it is all about taking complex, abstract ideas into actionable results. She adds that a repeatable rapid change process is a direct result of what leaders can take away from the 6-week series. (19:47)

Looking deeper, leaders will take an Agile Leadership assessment up front and then will have one area of change to focus on, and then will have 5 consecutive weeks to focus on adapt, align, analyze, achieve, and aspire. At the end of each week, leaders will have mastered a rapid change process that they can use in their business for the next vital changes that their business goes. (22:30)

Travis concludes by sharing that more information on an upcoming Agile Leadership series will be coming and to look out on social media for it! (23:40)

Guests:

Dr. Angela Crawford, Senior Consultant and Executive Coach, Leadership Excelleration; Dean, College of Business, Thomas More University.

Twitter: @AngelaCCrawford

Diane Egbers, CEO/Founder, Leadership Excelleration

Twitter: @DianeEgbers

Music: https://www.purple-planet.com

You can follow the podcast on Twitter at @TheLEpodcast

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