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Agile Santa Claus

Culture is the game – here is Agile Santa’s advice. Build a culture

🎄 that promotes employees

🎄 that encourages

🎄 that rewards

🎄 that incentivizes the thinking you’re seeking

🎄 your teams don’t operate in a vacuum

So this is one that one of the little elves shared with me, which – this is a very well read little elf by the way, obviously reads all the right books – there is a famous statement that says culture eats strategy for breakfast. I prefer eggs but that's fine you can eat what you want for breakfast. There is another statement that came from someone equally as famous that said: culture isn't part of the game, it is the game and that's my belief too. Culture drives strategy. It's not the other way around. You need to have a culture that promotes and encourages and rewards and incentivizes the thinking that you seek. So that's a big challenge for an organization to say, we have to rethink what our culture is when we adopt agile, because that's exactly what you need to do. You could mechanically or mechanistically implement agile whether it's SAFe, whether it's scrum, whether it's kanban, whether it's LeSS, whether it's more, whatever framework you happen to be choosing at the time, you can mechanistically implement it and yes you will get some benefits, valuable benefits, but if you really want those exponential benefits that they talk about that 100, 200, 300 percent performance that requires culture and mindset, that means company culture and mindset. Yes you're teams but your teams don't operate in a vacuum. They are part of an ecosystem which is your organization. So focus on culture. Make culture at the center of what you're trying to do. If you have the right culture you will be unable to avoid the right strategy because you'll be thinking about the right things, focusing on the right things. That strategy will emerge on its own, driven by the culture that you have. Have fun, enjoy Christmas. If you drink wine, enjoy it. If you don't, enjoy Christmas anyway.

About the course

Agile Santa has agreed to exclusively present his wisdom and advice with humor to all agilists in the world this year via




Beginner / Intermediate



Last Updated

Dec 24, 2022

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Ian has a deep knowledge of Scrum, Kanban and Scaled Agile, and 30 years’ experience in international IT Transformation Programs. He is a successful PO, SM & RTE and as a Consultant/Trainer he coaches his clients develop a strong Agile Mindset that delivers real change and measurable improvements.


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