Interview with Giuseppe De Simone

Interview with Giuseppe De Simone

Giuseppe is from Italy. He lives in Sweden and works as Lead Agile coach at one of the Ericsson Product Development Units. He is one of the prominent Agile influencers and we are really happy to have him with us this September. You may be interested to know that Giuseppe  started his Agile journey in Greece, in Patras more specifically. Read more about it in his interview.

giuseppe

We are really excited to have him in Agile Greece Summit 2016 and looking forward to his speech. Did you get your ticket?

Giuseppe De Simone

Q: Could you briefly introduce yourself?

My name is Giuseppe, I am Italian but I live in Stockholm with my wife and our two kids. I work as Lead Agile coach at one of the Ericsson Product Development Units and I am a member of the Scrum Alliance Certified Enterprise Coaches community. I have been working in product development for 17 years and I have been helping organizations with Lean and Agile transformation since 2009. I am passionate about anything related to agility, primarily Agile leadership, Change management, Software craftsmanship and Coaching.

Q: What will your talk be about, exactly? Why this topic?

The need (and even the urgency for me I would say) to propose my talk comes from the observation of a strident clash. On one side a new world is shaping up, where everything and everyone which benefits of being connected is being connected. Daily innovations, collaboration beyond boundaries, more interdependencies in the eco-systems are profoundly modifying the ability and the way people and enterprises create value.
On the other side, many companies are still influenced by management practices invented in 19th century for achieving totally different purposes than thriving in a fast changing complex landscape.
The result is normally that business suffers and employees suffer.
The question which had been bothering me for many years is: How can we believe that the way we managed in the past (even only five years ago) is still effective?
So I will talk about behaviors, skills and tools to successfully manage in the Networked Society, inspired by the wave of thinking which is re-inventing the management in the 21st century.

Q: What do you think could be the main gain for participants in your session?

The participants will understand that a complete management paradigm shift is needed. The session is rooted in my experience supporting a handful of organizations with the Agile transformation journey: so the participants will get concrete examples and suggestions on how to implement 21st management principles in their daily work and start a personal journey to become the leaders which current business challenges deserve.

Q: Can you give some advice to teams/organizations that are transitioning to agile?

Every context is different: so simply copying from others will not work. Every team or company should start instead by asking “Why? What is the problem we are trying to solve?.
The biggest mistake is considering Agile as something to implement: Agile is rather something you are or can be. Agile is an adjective, not a noun.
Scrum can be a good way to start, it is a great teacher: if you have never tried Agile development, Scrum can give you some frame to be able to start.
At the same time, you need to know many things outside Scrum to make Scrum work effectively: having someone to help and guide you through the first challenges can be a key differentiator between success and failure.

Q: How do you see the evolution of Agile in the future?

I see contrasting things. From one side I expect more and more “Agile” instances which have nothing to do with agility, where people and especially managers will lose o never get at all the original meaning of Agile manifesto. This can be also considered a normal evolution. When an innovation reaches the hype, it starts getting late majority or even laggards in the game: they probably accept Agile development just to look fashionable or to please their boss.
On the bright side I see a convergence of researches, theories, methods and practices coming from really different domains (Entrepreneurship, Neuroscience, Psychology, Finance, Management, Non-profits, even Military and Government) which are collectively creating a very visible red thread. And this red thread is all about coping effectively with fast change by using an empirical approach, embracing individuals as whole human beings not as resources to exploit, being mindful, decentralizing power, and creating meaningful relationships. That´s really exciting and will be fundamental in taking enterprise agility to the next level.

Q: You have given many interviews/presentations about agile. Is there a question you wish to have been asked but no one ever asked you?

The next question, the one I will get asked at Agile Greece summit 2016 ☺

Q: What you like to say something in advance to the Greek Agile community?

I feel very close to Greece (you know “una faccia, una razza”☺) and I actually started my Agile journey in Greece. At the end of 2009 I got the chance to be part of kicking-off the Agile transformation in a big development organization of around 2000 people. So I got to spend 3 months in Patras, together with other 18 apprentice coaches from all over the world and 9 consultants among the most knowledgeable Agile coaches and trainers at that time. Every single day of those 3 months was an incredible learning experience and that still remains the most exciting and fun period in my professional career. On other hand: Which better place to start a life-changing journey than the place which gave birth to the Western culture? ☺


Get your tickets for Agile Greece Summit 2016

Agile Greece summit 2016

George Psistakis

I am a lousy singer and painter. Co-founder of the easiest data management platfrom. Ever… Blendo (www.blendo.co).
– I love Agile. Got certified as a Scrum Master and, along with more friends, a founding member of AgileGreece.org (http://agilegreece.org/).
– I like community management and I am co-organizer of the API Athens (http://www.meetup.com/
API-Athens/) and the Agile Greece (http://meetup.com/Agile-Greece/) meetups.
– I do some blogging too and contribute to Developer Economics and write my own blog.