How to implement an agile methodology within a company?

100 Open Startups
6 min readJul 27, 2023

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Agile Methodology: Unleashing the Power of Flexibility and Collaboration to Drive Innovation and Corporate Transformation.

In a business world in constant evolution, the modernization of corporate processes is fundamental for the success and survival of organizations today.

However, many companies face the challenge of being slow to implement changes and adopt innovative practices , which can result in loss of competitiveness and opportunities.

To overcome this barrier, the adoption of an agile methodology, through integration with open innovation, have proven to be effective ways to drive digital transformation in corporate sectors.

Agile methodology offers a flexible and collaborative approach to managing projects and business processes.

That means prioritizing continuous value delivery, adapting quickly to change, and collaborating across teams. These approaches, more than anything, promote agility and efficiency in process modernization.

However, it is worth remembering that the adoption of an agile methodology should not be seen as an isolated and internal task. This is where open innovation plays a crucial role.

To combine agile methodology and open innovation, companies need to drive the adoption of disruptive practices and promote a culture of continuous learning and collaboration.

That’s what we’ll talk about throughout this article. See everything else below!

Why do companies need to learn to innovate?

The modernization of corporate processes is essential for companies to

remain competitive in an ever-evolving business environment.

Even more so in a context of intense transformations, where the world seems to dive headlong into a fully digital reality.

Increasingly fierce competition is also another important factor in this equation . The growing demand for competitive differentials turns on the warning signal for corporations with more immobilized creative processes.

However, many organizations face a common challenge: slow implementation of changes and adoption of new practices.

This can result in project delivery delays, lack of agility in responding to market demands, high operational costs and missed opportunities.

In this context, an effective solution to this problem is the adoption of an agile methodology , which promotes flexibility, collaboration and continuous value delivery.

Companies that follow traditional approaches to project management and business processes often face significant challenges in implementing change efficiently.

Processes are often bureaucratic and inflexible, with decisions centralized and taken hierarchically.

This results in a slow cycle of planning, approval and implementation, which hinders the company’s ability to quickly adapt to market changes and take advantage of new opportunities.

With more flexibility, it is possible to have more objectivity and speed when it comes to correcting errors and changing business approaches. That agile response time is becoming more important than ever for companies of all sizes and industries.

What is an agile methodology?

First, it is important to understand in a practical way about our subject. So let’s start from the beginning.

In short, an agile methodology is an approach to project management and idea development that emphasizes flexibility, collaboration, and continuous delivery of customer value.

It is based on a set of principles and values ​​established in the Agile Manifesto , created in 2001 by a group of professionals in the field of software development.

Agile methodologies are designed to handle the complex and ever-changing nature of projects , allowing teams to quickly respond to changing requirements and circumstances.

It is not by chance that this practice emerged at the beginning of this millennium, along with the consolidation of the home internet as an important work tool.

Unlike traditional approaches, which often follow a rigid, detailed plan from start to finish, agile methodologies encourage adaptation and continual iteration.

There are several popular agile methodologies . Each of them has its own specific practices, but they all share some fundamental principles, such as the examples we will see below.

  • Collaboration and constant communication between team members and stakeholders.
  • Deliver working software in small increments, prioritizing higher value items.
  • Rapid response to changes and continuous adaptation according to customer needs and project circumstances.
  • Focus on product quality, with frequent testing and constant feedback.
  • Team empowerment by encouraging self-organization and decentralized decision-making.

These methodologies also prioritize more fluid communication flows, such as daily stand-ups, sprint planning, reviews and retrospectives, to promote transparency, alignment and continuous process improvement.

In other words, an agile methodology is a flexible and collaborative approach to project management that seeks to deliver value in an incremental and adaptive way , valuing communication, collaboration and quick response to change.

Increasingly necessary in the modern market, this way of looking at business fits perfectly with the dynamics that the economy has been imposing over the last few decades.

How to bring an agile methodology into a company?

Of course, the implementation of this work dynamic within traditional companies can be a great challenge. Fortunately, there are some alternatives that can optimize and reduce the pain of this transition.

One of the effective ways to bring an agile methodology to a company is through the adoption of open innovation.

Open innovation is a concept that involves collaborating with external partners, such as startups , universities, development communities and experts in certain fields, to drive innovation within the organization.

What is open innovation?

Open innovation is a concept that involves opening the company’s borders to collaboration and cooperation with external partners such as other companies, universities, startups, researchers and development communities.

With this approach, companies seek to leverage the knowledge, ideas and resources of others to drive internal innovation and accelerate the development of products, services and processes.

Through the exchange of knowledge between professionals from different areas, generations and backgrounds , this practice fosters a collaborative work culture, perfect for meeting new market demands.

It involves actively sharing ideas, collaborating on joint projects, and acquiring external technologies and expertise to drive internal innovation.

When applying open innovation to the adoption of an agile methodology, the company can follow the following steps listed below.

Education and awareness

First, it is recommended to start with educating and making the team aware of the principles and benefits of the agile methodology.

Conducting internal workshops, trainings and lectures can help ensure that everyone understands the concept of agile methodology and its potential to improve business processes.

strategic partnerships

In addition, it is important to identify external partners who have knowledge and experience in agile methodologies can be valuable.

This could include expert agility consultants, consulting firms, certified trainers, or even startups with experience in agile implementation.

Communication and knowledge sharing

Maintaining clear and constant communication with all stakeholders involved in adopting the agile methodology is critical.

Sharing the results and lessons learned in the pilot projects and encouraging the exchange of experiences among the teams helps to disseminate the benefits and motivate other areas of the company to adopt the methodology.

culture and leadership

Another important point is that the adoption of an agile methodology requires a cultural change within the company . It is important that the leadership is committed and serves as an example for agile practices.

Stimulating a culture of experimentation, collaboration and continuous learning, valuing transparency, trust and empowerment of teams, is essential for collaboration with these startups .

external learning

Finally, it is essential to invest in exchanges with actors outside the company. These activities make it possible to exchange experiences with other companies that have already adopted the agile approach and offer networking opportunities with subject matter experts.

It is important to emphasize that each company is unique , therefore the specific approach to implementing an agile methodology may vary according to the organizational culture, available resources and the challenges faced.

Open innovation can provide a solid foundation to accelerate the adoption of agile methodology, leveraging external knowledge and experiences to drive digital transformation.

Where to find the best startups for open innovation projects?

The 100 Open Startups platform is an initiative that aims to promote collaboration between startups and established companies, with the aim of boosting open innovation.

The 100–10–1 program is a specific methodology offered by the platform to help companies identify, select and implement innovative solutions from startups.

Discover the 100–10–1 Startups Program, in which you and your team will have access to several startups , learn to evaluate them, provide feedback and mentorship, as well as develop open innovation projects.

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