Triggered by Process Change

The introduction of process change into your organization can be very triggering for participants. Consider Scrum, an Agile framework that changes around meetings, roles and rules, in service to continuous improvement.

Everything changes.

If you are a “manager” or a software “architect”, your entire world has just been turned upside down. You understood the old game. Not so here. In the new game, you are expected to find your place as a Product Owner, or a Scrum Master, or a participant on a Team.

If you have kids, or you are trying to save for retirement, or if your spouse is not currently working, or if you are seeking a promotion, a change like Scrum can be very triggering. It can evoke very primitive feelings of fight/flight, primitive feelings about your job (your “survival”) being threatened.

In short, the introduction of something like Scrum into your organization is likely to be very triggering. When changes like this are introduced into an organization as a mandate, as a “push” from management, we can predictably expect the change to trigger people.

When this happens, the level of anxiety in the organization rapidly escalates.

The number of people who are worried increases.

The level of fear increases.

In a situation like this, we can expect very lukewarm results, serious resistance, and lots of disengagement. The inputs are anxiety, worry, fear, and resentment.

This is exactly why management-mandated process change is seldom rapid or lasting.


The solution is very simple. Instead of pushing a process change, use “pull” instead. Use invitation, instead of that nasty mandate.

OpenSpace Agility (OSA) is one way to use invitation and “pull” to successfully introduce Agile into your company.

If you are considering a new Agile adoption, OSA can help you get traction right away.

If you already tried a management mandate of Agile, OSA can help you do a reset…and turn that thing around.