Across many organizations, silos are a common occurrence. These divisions often arise within departments and at senior leadership levels. Over time, they create barriers to the transfer of important information across multiple departments. Once established, silos can become baked into your organization’s business practices, which is a strong impediment to forming a responsive, agile environment. Employees can become misinformed or even resentful when excluded from important details that impact their roles and effectiveness. As author Daniel Kahneman says in his book Thinking, Fast and Slow, ultimately “we can be blind to the obvious, and we are also blind to our blindness.”
Fortunately, by implementing agility, you can deconstruct silos and create a common mindset.
It starts with your people
Once you’ve obtained buy in from your leaders, it’s important that all employees are informed of the values shift and feel empowered to choose how they will engage in the agile transformation. For example, if once-siloed details become available, how and when – if it all – will team members apply this knowledge to their tasks? To achieve business agility, you must agree upon a common way of working across your organization. Fostering a shared commitment, where teams hold themselves accountable for delivery of information and service, is critical to building an environment that supports autonomous thought and decision making. By creating an agile environment, you can empower to use their expertise to make the best possible decisions on behalf of the company. Reducing silos will also help to prevent departmental burnouts and encourage a sustainable pace across the organization through the reduction of dependencies by improving flow values.
Implement the right tools
Once your employees have united on the agile mindset and are ready to make the transition to agility, tools like Jira Align can help you move away from silos. By incorporating them, team members can operate cross-functionally to share work visibility, real-time reporting, an understanding of customer value, and vertical alignment across teams. They can also help to define and propagate consistent terminologies and definitions that adhere to organizational values and the common mindset. Ultimately, they will help your company achieve agility by providing alignment on the same goals, languages, and big picture.
Interested in creating an agile mindset?
We’d love to connect! Our team is ready to help you get there! We can provide you with an agile teams and tools assessment, which will evaluate your organization’s agile readiness, identify any impediments, and define the right path for your agile transformation.