Four Ways to Improve Your Strategic Thinking Skills Today



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Strategic thinking is often considered essential to an organization's successful performance. Some have even advocated for companies to develop the strategic thinking skills of their executives and other staff as a core competency. How can strategic thinking skills be developed? But first, here's a definition.

“Strategic thinking is a distinctive management activity whose purpose is to discover novel, imaginative strategies which can rewrite the rules of the competitive game; and to envision potential futures significantly different from the present. Furthermore, strategic thinking is specified as being conceptual, systems-oriented, directional (linking the future with the past), and opportunistic.”
— Ellen F. Goldman


In other words, strategic thinking is a process used to broaden an individual's perspective to achieve successful outcomes such as competitive advantage. And it can happen at every level of the organization; it's not just for executives.

Here are four specific things you can do to improve your strategic thinking skills.

1. Schedule Time for Strategic Thinking

You are investing in your success as well as that of the organization. Find the time to focus on strategic thinking. A tip is to place a recurring event on your calendar to reserve time for strategic thinking activities.

2. Monitor the Big Picture Including Trends

The default focus at most organizations is on what’s directly ahead. However, "peripheral vision"—including keeping sight of the big picture and industry trends—is essential for long-term success. Some tips follow. Keep abreast of industry organizations and publications. Build external networks to help you best scan the competitive landscape. Determine the unique perspective that your role provides, and define its favorable impact on the organization’s vision, mission, and/or strategic objectives.

3. Ask Questions to Uncover Patterns

Further to your mindfulness of the big picture and understanding of changes in the industry, you can put strategic thinking to work by asking yourself and others questions. A few examples follow. "What if _____?" questions are frequently effective in helping one "see around the corner." And variations such as "If _____, then _____?" often yield insights as well.


4. Embrace Uncertainty and Conflict

Strategic thinking involves envisioning the future and potential proactive ways the organization can change to remain competitive and successful. You should accept that the future is uncertain, and challenging assumptions by asking questions and other tactics may make some people uncomfortable. Remaining mindful of those aspects will help you stay the course in regularly practicing strategic thinking and securing the benefits summarized in this article.

Conclusion

By sharpening your strategic thinking skills, you benefit both yourself and your organization. It helps you make a greater contribution to the business—which may also support your advancement—and it helps the company enjoy greater competitive advantage and long-term success. So, start work on your strategic thinking skills today!

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Bibliography

Atsmon, Yuval (2017, May 2). How to Unleash Your Strategic Thinking. Digital article. McKinsey & Company.

Bonn, Ingrid (2005, June). Improving Strategic Thinking: A Multilevel Approach.
Leadership & Organization Development Journal, 26 (5). DOI: 10.1108/01437730510607844.

Cowan, N. (2001, February). The Magical Number 4 in Short-Term Memory: A Reconsideration of Mental Storage Capacity.
Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 24 (1): 87-119.

Dixit, Avinash K. and Nelebuff, Barry J. (1993).
Thinking Strategically: The Competitive Edge in Business, Politics, and Everyday Life. New York, NY: W. W. Norton & Company.

Goldman, Ellen F. (2007, Summer). Strategic Thinking at the Top.
MIT Sloan Management Review, 48 (4): 75-81.

Graffius, Scott M. (2016).
Thinking Strategically and Acting Tactically. Winnetka, CA: Exceptional PPM and PMO Solutions.

Reynolds, K. (2013). Strategic Thinking for Today's Project Managers. Paper presented at PMI Global Congress 2013—North America, New Orleans, LA. Newtown Square, PA: Project Management Institute.

Syrett, Michael and Devine, Marion (2012).
Managing Uncertainty: Strategies for Surviving and Thriving in Turbulent Times. London, United Kingdom: Profile Books.

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About the Author

ScottGraffius-181024_1000x1000_152KB-lowres-sq

Scott M. Graffius is an agile project management consultant, practitioner, award-winning author, and keynote speaker. Content from his books, speaking engagements, and more has been used by businesses, governments, and universities, including Gartner, Cisco, RSA, Ford, Qantas, Atlassian, Bayer, the United States Department of Energy, the New Zealand Ministry of Education, Tufts University, Texas A&M, and others. Thinkers360 named Scott a Top 20 Global Thought Leader and Influencer. His full-length bio is available at: https://bit.ly/bio-smg.

Connect with Scott on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.

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The short link for this article is
https://bit.ly/4-strategic.
This article was first published here. Later—on August 24, 2021—the article was posted to LinkedIn
here as well.


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© Copyright 2020 Scott M. Graffius. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without the express written permission of Scott M. Graffius.




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Using Bruce Tuckman's Phases of Team Development to Help Your Team Grow and Advance: 2021 Update

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🔥 Scott M. Graffius periodically updates his Phases of Team Development content. The newest version is here.

2021 Update

Teams (agile or otherwise) go through phases of development, and Dr. Bruce Tuckman established a popular and durable framework on the subject. According to Dr. Tuckman, all phases—Forming, Storming, Norming, Performing, and Adjourning—are necessary for teams to grow, tackle problems, find solutions, plan work, and deliver results.

Agile project management thought leader, influencer, and author Scott M. Graffius developed a related custom illustration, Phases of Team Development. It highlights the performance level, characteristics, and proven strategies for each of the phases. Project Managers, Scrum Masters, Agile Coaches, DevOps Leads, and other professionals can apply the information to help handle challenges or issues experienced by teams. By doing so, they’ll advance the teams' happiness and productivity, as well as the teams' (and their own) success. Graffius updates the content periodically.

He released an updated version of the visual on January 4, 2021. This article features the new version of the Phases of Team Development illustration. Read on for details including information on permission requests and downloadable high-resolution versions of the visual.

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Five Phases of Team Development

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1. Forming

Characteristics of Forming include displaying eagerness, socializing, generally polite tone, sticking to safe topics, being unclear about how one fits in, and some anxiety and questioning.

Strategies for this phase include taking the ‘lead,’ being highly visible, facilitating introductions, providing the ‘big picture,’ establishing clear expectations, communicating success criteria, and ensuring that response times are quick.

2. Storming

Traits of Storming include resistance, lack of participation, conflict related to differences of feelings and opinions, competition, high emotions, and starting to move towards group norms.

Strategies for this phase include requesting and encouraging feedback, identifying issues and facilitating their resolution, normalizing matters, and building trust by honoring commitments.


3. Norming

Features of Norming include an improved sense of purpose and understanding of goals, higher confidence, improved commitment, team members are engaged and supportive, relief—lowered anxiety, and starting to develop cohesion.

Strategies for this phase include recognizing individual and team efforts, proving opportunities for learning and feedback, and monitoring the ‘energy’ of the team.


4. Performing

Characteristics of Performing include higher motivation, elevated trust and empathy, individuals typically deferring to the team's needs, effective production, consistent performance, and demonstrations of interdependence and self-management (also referred to as self-organization).

Strategies for this phase include ‘guiding from the side’ (minimal intervention), celebrating successes, and encouraging collective decision-making and problem-solving.

5. Adjourning

Typical traits of Adjourning (also referred to as Transitioning or Mourning) include a shift to process orientation, sadness, recognition of team and individual efforts, and disbanding.

Strategies for this phase include recognizing change, providing an opportunity for summative team evaluations (which may go by
lessons learned, post-project review, retrospective, or another label), providing an opportunity for individual acknowledgments, and celebrating the team's accomplishments—which may involve a party and possibly an after-party.

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As shown, performance fluctuates as teams move through the phases. Review the characteristics to help identify the team's current phase, then apply the corresponding proven strategies to help them advance.

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Permission Requests and Downloadable High-Resolution Versions of 'Phases of Team Development' Illustration

🔥 Scott M. Graffius periodically updates his Phases of Team Development content. The newest version is here.

For permission requests, contact Scott M. Graffius at the email address noted in the image.

High resolution versions of the updated Phases of Team Development image are available at the following links:
here for the JPG file and here for the PNG file.

Citation: Graffius, Scott M. (2021). Phases of Team Development. Digital Object Identifier (DOI): 10.13140/RG.2.2.22040.42246. DOI link: https://dx.doi.org/10.13140/RG.2.2.22040.42246.

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Bibliography

Select list of publications

  • Alford, J. (2019, April 11). Our Co-Production Journey: From Sandpits to Bird Boxes. London, United Kingdom: Imperial College London.
  • Bennett, M., Gadlin, H., & Marchand, C. (2018). Collaboration Team Science: Field Guide. Rockville, MD: National Institutes of Health.
  • Couture, N. (2016, October 27). A Note About Teams. CIO. Boston, MA: International Data Group (IDG).
  • Daly, L. (2002). Identify Your Project Management Team’s Level of Development and Facilitate It to Success. Paper presented at Project Management Institute Annual Seminars and Symposium, San Antonio, TX. Newtown Square, PA: Project Management Institute.
  • Deloitte (2017). Digital Era Technology Operating Models, Volume 2. New York, NY: Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited.
  • Finkelstein, S. (2017, October 29). Why Companies Should Hire Teams, Not Individuals. The Wall Street Journal. New York, NY: The Wall Street Journal.
  • Forbes (2018, April 23). How to Fast-Track Any Team to Success. Forbes. New York, NY: Forbes.
  • Forbes (2012, October 27). How the iPad Mini is Defining Tim Cook’s Apple. Forbes. New York, NY: Forbes.
  • Glover, P. (2012, March 13). Team Conflict: Why It’s a Good Thing. Fast Company. New York, NY: Mansueto Ventures.
  • Graffius, Scott M. (2021). Phases of Team Development. Los Angeles, CA: Scott M. Graffius. Digital Object Identifier (DOI): 10.13140/RG.2.2.22040.42246. 
  • Jovanovic, M., Mesquida, A., Radaković, N., & Mas, A. (2016). Agile Retrospective Games for Different Team Development Phases. Journal of Universal Computer Science, 22: 1489-1508.
  • Kane, G. C. (2014, October 7). Why Your Company is Probably Measuring Social Media Wrong. MIT Sloan Management Review. Cambridge, MA: MIT Sloan Management Review.
  • KPMG (2017). The Digital Fund, Season 2. Amstelveen, Netherlands: KPMG International.
  • Madden, D. (2019, May 19). The Four Stages of Building a Great Team – and the One Where Things Usually Go Wrong. Inc. Magazine. New York, NY: Inc. Magazine.
  • Makar, A. (2011, July 13). Lessons Learned in Norming and Performing Team Development Phases. Louisville, KY: TechRepublic.
  • Martinuzzi, B. (2012, June 8). Six Tips Guaranteed to Reduce Workplace Frustrations. New York, NY: American Express Company.
  • Microsoft (2019, June 15). Is the Latest Technology the Key to Your Team’s Success, or is There Something Else? Microsoft Developer Support. Accessed at: https://devblogs.microsoft.com/premier-developer/is-the-latest-technology-the-key-to-your-teams-success-or-is-there-something-else. Redmond, WA: Microsoft.
  • Mocko, G., & Linnerud, B. (2016). Measuring the Effects of Goal Alignment on Innovative Engineering Design Projects. International Journal of Engineering Education, 32: 55-63.
  • Romanelli, M. (2019, September 11). Teamwork Accelerated. PM Times. Newmarket, Ontario, Canada: Macgregor Communications.
  • Riggs, A. (2020, October 15). Why I Start All My Video Meetings with Collaborative Games (Spoiler: It’s Not Boredom). Amsterdam, the Netherlands: The Next Web (TNW).
  • Rowley, D., & Lange, M. (2007). Forming to Performing: The Evolution of an Agile Team. IEEE Computer Society Proceedings. Agile 2007, 1: 408-414.
  • Scrum Alliance (2020). Learning Objectives Examples. Denver, CO: Scrum Alliance.
  • Sakpal, M. (2020, March 3. Learn How to Debunk These Five Restructuring Myths. Stamford, CT: Gartner, Inc.
  • Stern, S. (2018, September 26). Is Your Team Working the Rory Underwood Way? Financial Times. London, United Kingdom: The Financial Times, a Nikkei Company.
  • Telford, R. (2013, June 4). This is Where It Gets Interesting. Armonk, NY: International Business Machines (IBM) Corporation.
  • Tuckman, B. W. (1965). Developmental Sequence in Small Groups. Psychological Bulletin, 63: 384-399.
  • Tuckman, B. W., & Jensen, M. A. C. (1977). Stages of Small-Group Development Revisited. Group and Organizational Studies, 2 (4): 419-427.
  • United States Army (2015). Innovative Learning: A Key to National Security. Washington, DC: Uni
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About Scott M. Graffius

ScottGraffius-181024_1000x1000_152KB-lowres-sq

Scot founder, CEO, and principal consultant at Exceptional PPM and PMO Solutions™ and subsidiary Exceptional Agility™, based in Los Angeles, California. His expertise spans project, program, portfolio, and PMO leadership inclusive of agile, traditional, and hybrid approaches. Content from his books (
Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions and Agile Transformation: A Brief Story of How an Entertainment Company Developed New Capabilities and Unlocked Business Agility to Thrive in an Era of Rapid Change), workshops, speaking engagements, and more have been featured and used by businesses, governments, and universities including Gartner, Microsoft, Deloitte, Oracle, Cisco, Ford, Qantas, Atlassian, Bayer, the National Academy of Sciences, the United States Department of Energy, the United States Army, Project Management Institute, the IEEE, the New Zealand Ministry of Education, Tufts University, Texas A&M University, Virginia Tech, Penn State, Warsaw University of Technology, University of Waterloo, Loughborough University London, and others. Graffius has spoken at 58 conferences and other events around the world, including Armenia, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Czech Republic, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, India, Ireland, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, New Zealand, Sweden, United Kingdom, and the United States. Thinkers360 named Graffius a global top thought leader and influencer in four domains: Agile, Change Management, Digital Transformation, and GovTech.

His full bio is available at
https://www.scottgraffius.com.

Connect with Scott on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.

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About Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions

Scott_M_Graffius_-_Agile_Scrum_-_International_v-22020507-ASG-BLG-LR-SQ

A fantastic agile transformation experience and result with a client organization in the entertainment industry was the inspiration for Scott M. Graffius’s multi award-winning book,
Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions (ISBN-13: 978-1533370242).

Here's an excerpt from the book: "Shifting customer needs are common in today's marketplace. Businesses must be adaptive and responsive to change while delivering an exceptional customer experience to be competitive. Traditional development and delivery frameworks such as waterfall are often ineffective. In contrast, Scrum is a value-driven agile approach which incorporates adjustments based on regular and repeated customer and stakeholder feedback. And Scrum’s built-in rapid response to change leads to substantial benefits such as fast time-to-market, higher satisfaction, and continuous improvement—which supports innovation and drives competitive advantage."

With clear and easy to follow instructions, Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions helps you:

  • Implement and use the most popular agile framework―Scrum;
  • Deliver products in short cycles with rapid adaptation to change, fast time-to-market, and continuous improvement; and
  • Support innovation and drive competitive advantage.

Hailed by Literary Titan as “the book highlights the versatility of Scrum beautifully.”

Winner of 17 first place awards.

Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions is available in paperback and ebook/Kindle in the United States and around the world. Some links by country follow. Get your copy today!

🇦🇺 Australia
🇦🇹 Austria
🇧🇪 Belgium
🇧🇷 Brazil
🇨🇦 Canada
🇨🇿 Czech Republic
🇩🇰 Denmark
🇫🇮 Finland
🇫🇷 France
🇩🇪 Germany
🇬🇷 Greece
🇭🇺 Hungary
🇮🇳 India
🇮🇪 Ireland
🇮🇱 Israel
🇮🇹 Italy
🇯🇵 Japan
🇱🇺 Luxembourg
🇲🇽 Mexico
🇳🇱 Netherlands
🇳🇿 New Zealand
🇳🇴 Norway
🇪🇸 Spain
🇸🇪 Sweden
🇨🇭 Switzerland
🇦🇪 UAE
🇬🇧 United Kingdom
🇺🇸 United States

🌏 More countries

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About
Agile Transformation: A Brief Story of How an Entertainment Company Developed New Capabilities and Unlocked Business Agility to Thrive in an Era of Rapid Change

Agile_Transformation_Book_by_Scott_M_Graffius_-_v20220316TYPFIX-LR-SQ

Thriving in today's marketplace frequently depends on making a transformation to become more agile. Those successful in the transition enjoy faster delivery speed and ROI, higher satisfaction, continuous improvement, and additional benefits.
Agile Transformation: A Brief Story of How an Entertainment Company Developed New Capabilities and Unlocked Business Agility to Thrive in an Era of Rapid Change (ISBN-13: 978-1072447962) provides a revealing behind-the-scenes story about an actual successful agile implementation at a global entertainment company.

The award-winning book — a quick (60-90 minute) read — is available in paperback and ebook/Kindle formats in the
United States and around the world. Some links by country follow.


🇦🇺 Australia
🇦🇹 Austria
🇧🇷 Brazil
🇨🇦 Canada
🇨🇿 Czech Republic
🇩🇰 Denmark
🇫🇮 Finland
🇫🇷 France
🇩🇪 Germany
🇬🇷 Greece
🇮🇳 India
🇮🇪 Ireland
🇯🇵 Japan
🇱🇺 Luxembourg
🇲🇽 Mexico
🇳🇱 Netherlands
🇳🇿 New Zealand
🇪🇸 Spain
🇸🇪 Sweden
🇨🇭 Switzerland
🇦🇪 United Arab Emirates
🇬🇧 United Kingdom
🇺🇸 United States

🌏 More countries

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The short URL for this article is: bit.ly/teams-21

© Copyright 2021 Scott M. Graffius. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without the express written permission of Scott M. Graffius.





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Scott M. Graffius Delivering a Talk at BSides Newcastle England 2021 InfoSec Conference



Scott M Graffius Speaking at BSides NCL 2021 - LR-SQ

Scott M. Graffius will present “Navigate the Phases of Team Development with Speed and Agility for Happier and More Productive InfoSec Teams” to an audience of Technology Information Security professionals at the BSides Newcastle 2021 Conference. Scott will deliver his talk on Saturday, September 11th, from 4:00-5:10 p.m. British Time (8:00-9:10 a.m. Pacific Time).


Attendees may be eligible to receive continuing education unit (CEU) credit, equivalent to 1.25 Professional Development Hour (PDHs). For reporting with the Project Management Institute (PMI), it's 1.25 Professional Development Units (PDUs), under the Leadership category. For reporting with the Scrum Alliance, it's 1.25 Scrum Educational Units (SEUs), under either the Learning category or the Events category. For reporting with other organizations, refer to their respective instructions.

Secure your tickets for the conference from
Eventbrite.

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About Scott M. Graffius

ScottGraffius-181024_1000x1000_152KB-lowres-sq

Scott M. Graffius, PMP, CSP-SM, CSP-PO, CSM, CSPO, SFE, ITIL, LSSGB is an agile project management practitioner, consultant, award-winning author, and international speaker. He has generated over one billion dollars of business value in aggregate for the organizations he has served. Graffius is the founder, CEO, and principal consultant at Exceptional PPM and PMO Solutions™ and subsidiary Exceptional Agility™, based in Los Angeles, California. His expertise spans project, program, portfolio, and PMO leadership inclusive of agile, traditional, and hybrid approaches. Content from his books (Agile Scrum and Agile Transformation), workshops, speaking engagements, and more have been featured and used by businesses, governments, and universities including Gartner, Microsoft, Deloitte, Oracle, Cisco, Ford, Qantas, Atlassian, Bayer, the National Academy of Sciences, the United States Department of Energy, the United States Army, Project Management Institute, the IEEE, the New Zealand Ministry of Education, Tufts University, Texas A&M University, Virginia Tech, Penn State, Warsaw University of Technology, University of Waterloo, Loughborough University London, and others. Graffius has spoken at 58 conferences and other events around the world, including Armenia, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Czech Republic, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, India, Ireland, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, New Zealand, Sweden, United Kingdom, and the United States. Thinkers360 named Graffius a global top thought leader and influencer in four domains: Agile, Change Management, Digital Transformation, and GovTech.

His full bio is available at
https://www.scottgraffius.com.

Connect with Scott on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.

Follow_ScottGraffius_-_v22020507-SG-BLG-LR-SQ

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About Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions

Scott_M_Graffius_-_Agile_Scrum_-_International_v-22020507-ASG-BLG-LR-SQ

A fantastic agile transformation experience and result with a client organization in the entertainment industry was the inspiration for Scott M. Graffius’s multi award-winning book,
Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions (ISBN-13: 978-1533370242).

Here's an excerpt from the book: "Shifting customer needs are common in today's marketplace. Businesses must be adaptive and responsive to change while delivering an exceptional customer experience to be competitive. Traditional development and delivery frameworks such as waterfall are often ineffective. In contrast, Scrum is a value-driven agile approach which incorporates adjustments based on regular and repeated customer and stakeholder feedback. And Scrum’s built-in rapid response to change leads to substantial benefits such as fast time-to-market, higher satisfaction, and continuous improvement—which supports innovation and drives competitive advantage."

With clear and easy to follow instructions, Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions helps you:

  • Implement and use the most popular agile framework―Scrum;
  • Deliver products in short cycles with rapid adaptation to change, fast time-to-market, and continuous improvement; and
  • Support innovation and drive competitive advantage.

Hailed by Literary Titan as “the book highlights the versatility of Scrum beautifully.”

Winner of 17 first place awards.

Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions is available in paperback and ebook/Kindle in the United States and around the world. Some links by country follow. Get your copy today!

🇦🇺 Australia
🇦🇹 Austria
🇧🇪 Belgium
🇧🇷 Brazil
🇨🇦 Canada
🇨🇿 Czech Republic
🇩🇰 Denmark
🇫🇮 Finland
🇫🇷 France
🇩🇪 Germany
🇬🇷 Greece
🇭🇺 Hungary
🇮🇳 India
🇮🇪 Ireland
🇮🇱 Israel
🇮🇹 Italy
🇯🇵 Japan
🇱🇺 Luxembourg
🇲🇽 Mexico
🇳🇱 Netherlands
🇳🇿 New Zealand
🇳🇴 Norway
🇪🇸 Spain
🇸🇪 Sweden
🇨🇭 Switzerland
🇦🇪 UAE
🇬🇧 United Kingdom
🇺🇸 United States

🌏 More countries

Scott_M_Graffius_-_Agile_Scrum_-_Innovate_-_v22020707-SG-BLG-LR-SQ

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About
Agile Transformation: A Brief Story of How an Entertainment Company Developed New Capabilities and Unlocked Business Agility to Thrive in an Era of Rapid Change

Agile_Transformation_Book_by_Scott_M_Graffius_-_v20220316TYPFIX-LR-SQ

Thriving in today's marketplace frequently depends on making a transformation to become more agile. Those successful in the transition enjoy faster delivery speed and ROI, higher satisfaction, continuous improvement, and additional benefits.
Agile Transformation: A Brief Story of How an Entertainment Company Developed New Capabilities and Unlocked Business Agility to Thrive in an Era of Rapid Change (ISBN-13: 978-1072447962) provides a revealing behind-the-scenes story about an actual successful agile implementation at a global entertainment company.

The award-winning book — a quick (60-90 minute) read — is available in paperback and ebook/Kindle formats in the
United States and around the world. Some links by country follow.


🇦🇺 Australia
🇦🇹 Austria
🇧🇷 Brazil
🇨🇦 Canada
🇨🇿 Czech Republic
🇩🇰 Denmark
🇫🇮 Finland
🇫🇷 France
🇩🇪 Germany
🇬🇷 Greece
🇮🇳 India
🇮🇪 Ireland
🇯🇵 Japan
🇱🇺 Luxembourg
🇲🇽 Mexico
🇳🇱 Netherlands
🇳🇿 New Zealand
🇪🇸 Spain
🇸🇪 Sweden
🇨🇭 Switzerland
🇦🇪 United Arab Emirates
🇬🇧 United Kingdom
🇺🇸 United States

🌏 More countries

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About BSides Newcastle (BSides NCL)

BSidesNCL_Design_LR_SQ
Logo for BSides NCL Conference (Property of BSides NCL)

What’s “the weirdest InfoSec event out there?” According to the organizers of BSides NCL, it’s their conference. The inaugural session of the Technology Information Security (InfoSec) event was held in 2019 in a skate park in Newcastle, England. In 2020, the event was virtual. In 2021, the cyber security event will be hybrid—in-person and virtual—and run from Friday, September 10th through Saturday, September 11th. The in-person meetup will be conducted at The Catalyst and those attending virtually will participate via
Gather.

To learn more about the conference, visit
https://bsidesnewcastle.org and follow it on Twitter at @BSidesNCL.

Tickets are available at
Eventbrite.

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About The Catalyst Newcastle

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The Catalyst Newcastle on June 1, 2020 (Photo by Sam Barnwell Photography; image used under license, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

The Catalyst is located in the centre of Newcastle, England. The home to the National Innovation Centre for Data, it brings together businesses, academia, technology, and science. The Catalyst encourages collaborative innovation and provides a supportive ecosystem for businesses to grow and develop new ideas, products, and services, alongside world-leading thinkers and creatives.

To learn more, visit
https://www.thecatalystnewcastle.co.uk. Follow it on Twitter at @TheCatalystUK.

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The short URL for this blog post is: https://bit.ly/ncl-blg
The short URL for a related LinkedIn post is:
https://bit.ly/ncl-lin



© Copyright 2021 Scott M. Graffius. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without the express written permission of Scott M. Graffius.



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Use the Phases of Team Development (Based on Bruce W. Tuckman's Model of Forming, Storming, Norming, Performing, and Adjourning) to Help Teams Grow and Advance: 2022 Update

Scott_M_Graffius_-_Phases_of_Team_Development_-_Update_for_2022_-_v22021407-LR

For permission requests and high resolution versions of the Phases of Team Development image, see below.

2022 Update


Want happier and more productive teams? Among other things, it takes great leadership. And proven strategies can provide a real edge! That’s where the groundbreaking work by Bruce W. Tuckman — Ph.D. in Psychology from Princeton — comes in.

Tuckman conducted extensive research on group dynamics, and he published a related model in 1965. At that time, the model included four phases: forming, storming, norming, and performing. However, Dr. Tuckman subsequently determined that adjourning was so important that he, with Mary Ann Jensen, updated his model in 1977 to add adjourning as the fifth phase. According to Tuckman, all five phases — Forming, Storming, Norming, Performing, and Adjourning — are necessary for teams to grow, tackle problems, find solutions, plan work, and deliver results.

Tuckman’s model has stood the test of time because it remains highly relevant and beneficial. Since his work was published, it has been supported by additional peer-reviewed research. And it has received recommendations and coverage from leading organizations including Google, Harvard Business Review, IEEE, MIT, Fast Company, NASA, Microsoft, TNW, Project Management Institute, Scrum Alliance, Scrum.org, Gartner, CIO, RAND Corporation, Software Engineering Institute, University of Edinburgh, Cisco, KPMG, Warsaw University of Technology, Software Engineering Institute, DevOps Institute, American Express, SANS Institute, Zurich University, SAP, ViacomCBS, Oxford University, American Management Association, AT&T, University of Southern California, IBM, and many others.

Agile project management practitioner, consultant, award-winning author, international speaker, thought leader, and influencer Scott M. Graffius developed a related custom illustration, Phases of Team Development. It highlights the performance level, characteristics, and proven strategies for each of the five phases. Project Managers, Scrum Masters, Agile Coaches, DevOps Leads, and other professionals can apply the information to help handle challenges or issues experienced by teams. By doing so, they’ll advance the teams' happiness, productivity, and success.

Graffius updates the content periodically. He released an updated version of the visual on February 14, 2022. This article features the newest version of the Phases of Team Development illustration. Read on for details including information on permission requests and downloadable high-resolution versions of the image.

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Five Phases of Team Development

1. Forming

Characteristics of Forming include displaying eagerness, socializing, generally polite tone, sticking to safe topics, unclear about how one fits in, and some anxiety and questioning.

Strategies for this phase include taking the ‘lead,’ being highly visible, facilitating introductions, providing the ‘big picture,’ establishing clear expectations, communicating success criteria, and ensuring response times are quick.

2. Storming

Traits of Storming include some resistance, lack of participation, conflict based on differences of opinions, competition, and high emotions.

Strategies for this phase include requesting and encouraging feedback, identifying issues and facilitating their resolution, normalizing matters, and building trust by honoring commitments.

3. Norming

Features of Norming include purpose and goals are well-understood, more confident, improved commitment, members are engaged and supportive, relief (lowered anxiety), and developing cohesion.

Strategies for this phase include recognizing individual and team efforts, providing learning opportunities and feedback, and monitoring the ‘energy’ of the team.


4. Performing

Characteristics of Performing include high motivation, trust, and empathy; individuals defer to team needs; effectively producing deliverables; consistent performance; and demonstrations of interdependence and self-management.

Strategies for this phase include ‘guiding from the side’ (minimal intervention), celebrating successes, and encouraging collective decision-making and problem-solving.

5. Adjourning

Typical traits of Adjourning (also referred to as Transitioning or Mourning) include potential sadness, recognition of team and individual efforts, and disbanding.

Strategies for this phase include recognizing change, providing an opportunity for summative team evaluations ('lessons learned'), providing an opportunity for individual acknowledgments, and celebrating the team’s accomplishments — which may involve a party and possibly an after-party.

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As shown, performance fluctuates as teams move through the phases. Review the characteristics to help identify the team's current phase, then apply the corresponding proven strategies to help them advance.

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Permission Requests and Downloadable High-Resolution Versions of 'Phases of Team Development' Illustration

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To request permission to use the 'Phases of Team Development' visual, contact Scott M. Graffius at the email address indicated in the image above.

High resolution versions of the Phases of Team Development image are available at the following links:
here for the JPG file and here for the PNG file.

Citation: Graffius, Scott M. (2022). Phases of Team Development. Digital Object Identifier (DOI): 10.13140/RG.2.2.19112.85766. DOI link: https://dx.doi.org/10.13140/RG.2.2.19112.85766.

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Bibliography

Select (partial) list of publications

  • Alford, J. (2019, April 11). Our Co-Production Journey: From Sandpits to Bird Boxes. London, United Kingdom: Imperial College London.
  • Bennett, M., Gadlin, H., & Marchand, C. (2018). Collaboration Team Science: Field Guide. Rockville, MD: National Institutes of Health.
  • Couture, N. (2016, October 27). A Note About Teams. CIO. Boston, MA: International Data Group (IDG).
  • Daly, L. (2002). Identify Your Project Management Team’s Level of Development and Facilitate It to Success. Paper presented at Project Management Institute Annual Seminars and Symposium, San Antonio, TX. Newtown Square, PA: Project Management Institute.
  • Deloitte (2017). Digital Era Technology Operating Models, Volume 2. New York, NY: Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited.
  • Finkelstein, S. (2017, October 29). Why Companies Should Hire Teams, Not Individuals. The Wall Street Journal. New York, NY: The Wall Street Journal.
  • Forbes (2018, April 23). How to Fast-Track Any Team to Success. Forbes. New York, NY: Forbes.
  • Forbes (2012, October 27). How the iPad Mini is Defining Tim Cook’s Apple. Forbes. New York, NY: Forbes.
  • Glover, P. (2012, March 13). Team Conflict: Why It’s a Good Thing. Fast Company. New York, NY: Mansueto Ventures.
  • Graffius, Scott M. (2021). Phases of Team Development. Los Angeles, CA: Scott M. Graffius. Digital Object Identifier (DOI): 10.13140/RG.2.2.22040.42246. 
  • Jovanovic, M., Mesquida, A., Radaković, N., & Mas, A. (2016). Agile Retrospective Games for Different Team Development Phases. Journal of Universal Computer Science, 22: 1489-1508.
  • Kane, G. C. (2014, October 7). Why Your Company is Probably Measuring Social Media Wrong. MIT Sloan Management Review. Cambridge, MA: MIT Sloan Management Review.
  • KPMG (2017). The Digital Fund, Season 2. Amstelveen, Netherlands: KPMG International.
  • Madden, D. (2019, May 19). The Four Stages of Building a Great Team – and the One Where Things Usually Go Wrong. Inc. Magazine. New York, NY: Inc. Magazine.
  • Makar, A. (2011, July 13). Lessons Learned in Norming and Performing Team Development Phases. Louisville, KY: TechRepublic.
  • Martinuzzi, B. (2012, June 8). Six Tips Guaranteed to Reduce Workplace Frustrations. New York, NY: American Express Company.
  • Microsoft (2019, June 15). Is the Latest Technology the Key to Your Team’s Success, or is There Something Else? Microsoft Developer Support. Accessed at: https://devblogs.microsoft.com/premier-developer/is-the-latest-technology-the-key-to-your-teams-success-or-is-there-something-else. Redmond, WA: Microsoft.
  • Mocko, G., & Linnerud, B. (2016). Measuring the Effects of Goal Alignment on Innovative Engineering Design Projects. International Journal of Engineering Education, 32: 55-63.
  • Romanelli, M. (2019, September 11). Teamwork Accelerated. PM Times. Newmarket, Ontario, Canada: Macgregor Communications.
  • Riggs, A. (2020, October 15). Why I Start All My Video Meetings with Collaborative Games (Spoiler: It’s Not Boredom). Amsterdam, the Netherlands: The Next Web (TNW).
  • Rowley, D., & Lange, M. (2007). Forming to Performing: The Evolution of an Agile Team. IEEE Computer Society Proceedings. Agile 2007, 1: 408-414.
  • Scrum Alliance (2020). Learning Objectives Examples. Denver, CO: Scrum Alliance.
  • Sakpal, M. (2020, March 3. Learn How to Debunk These Five Restructuring Myths. Stamford, CT: Gartner, Inc.
  • Stern, S. (2018, September 26). Is Your Team Working the Rory Underwood Way? Financial Times. London, United Kingdom: The Financial Times, a Nikkei Company.
  • Telford, R. (2013, June 4). This is Where It Gets Interesting. Armonk, NY: International Business Machines (IBM) Corporation.
  • Tuckman, B. W. (1965). Developmental Sequence in Small Groups. Psychological Bulletin, 63: 384-399.
  • Tuckman, B. W., & Jensen, M. A. C. (1977). Stages of Small-Group Development Revisited. Group and Organizational Studies, 2 (4): 419-427.
  • United States Army (2015). Innovative Learning: A Key to National Security. Washington, DC: United States Army.
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About Scott M. Graffius

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Scott M. Graffius, PMP, CSP-SM, CSP-PO, CSM, CSPO, SFE, ITIL, LSSGB is an agile project management practitioner, consultant, multi award-winning author, and international speaker. He has generated over 1.75 billion dollars of business value in aggregate for the organizations he has served. Graffius is the CEO and Principal Consultant at Exceptional PPM and PMO Solutions™ and subsidiary Exceptional Agility™. His expertise spans project, program, portfolio, and PMO leadership inclusive of agile, traditional, and hybrid approaches. Content from his books, workshops, speaking engagements, and more have been featured and used by businesses, professional associations, governments, and universities including Microsoft, Oracle, Cisco, Gartner, Deloitte, Project Management Institute, IEEE, SANS Institute, U.S. Soccer Federation, English Institute of Sport, Ford, Qantas, Atlassian, Wrike, Bayer, National Academy of Sciences, United States Department of Energy, United States Army, New Zealand Ministry of Education, Amsterdam Public Health Research Institute, Tufts University, Texas A&M University, Warsaw University of Technology, University of Waterloo, National University of Ireland Galway, Zurich University of Applied Sciences, and others. Graffius has spoken at 67 conferences and other events around the world, including Armenia, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Czech Republic, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, India, Ireland, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, New Zealand, Sweden, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, and the United States. Thinkers360 named Graffius a global top
thought leader and influencer in four domains: Agile, Change Management, Digital Transformation, and GovTech.

His full bio is available
here.

Connect with Scott on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.

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About Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions

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A fantastic agile transformation experience and result with a client organization in the entertainment industry was the inspiration for Scott M. Graffius’s multi award-winning book,
Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions (ISBN-13: 978-1533370242).

Here's an excerpt from the book: "Shifting customer needs are common in today's marketplace. Businesses must be adaptive and responsive to change while delivering an exceptional customer experience to be competitive. Traditional development and delivery frameworks such as waterfall are often ineffective. In contrast, Scrum is a value-driven agile approach which incorporates adjustments based on regular and repeated customer and stakeholder feedback. And Scrum’s built-in rapid response to change leads to substantial benefits such as fast time-to-market, higher satisfaction, and continuous improvement—which supports innovation and drives competitive advantage."

With clear and easy to follow instructions, Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions helps you:

  • Implement and use the most popular agile framework―Scrum;
  • Deliver products in short cycles with rapid adaptation to change, fast time-to-market, and continuous improvement; and
  • Support innovation and drive competitive advantage.

Hailed by Literary Titan as “the book highlights the versatility of Scrum beautifully.”

Winner of 17 first place awards.

Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions is available in paperback and ebook/Kindle in the United States and around the world. Some links by country follow. Get your copy today!

🇦🇺 Australia
🇦🇹 Austria
🇧🇪 Belgium
🇧🇷 Brazil
🇨🇦 Canada
🇨🇿 Czech Republic
🇩🇰 Denmark
🇫🇮 Finland
🇫🇷 France
🇩🇪 Germany
🇬🇷 Greece
🇭🇺 Hungary
🇮🇳 India
🇮🇪 Ireland
🇮🇱 Israel
🇮🇹 Italy
🇯🇵 Japan
🇱🇺 Luxembourg
🇲🇽 Mexico
🇳🇱 Netherlands
🇳🇿 New Zealand
🇳🇴 Norway
🇪🇸 Spain
🇸🇪 Sweden
🇨🇭 Switzerland
🇦🇪 UAE
🇬🇧 United Kingdom
🇺🇸 United States

🌏 More countries

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About
Agile Transformation: A Brief Story of How an Entertainment Company Developed New Capabilities and Unlocked Business Agility to Thrive in an Era of Rapid Change

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Thriving in today's marketplace frequently depends on making a transformation to become more agile. Those successful in the transition enjoy faster delivery speed and ROI, higher satisfaction, continuous improvement, and additional benefits.
Agile Transformation: A Brief Story of How an Entertainment Company Developed New Capabilities and Unlocked Business Agility to Thrive in an Era of Rapid Change (ISBN-13: 978-1072447962) provides a revealing behind-the-scenes story about an actual successful agile implementation at a global entertainment company.

The award-winning book — a quick (60-90 minute) read — is available in paperback and ebook/Kindle formats in the
United States and around the world. Some links by country follow.


🇦🇺 Australia
🇦🇹 Austria
🇧🇷 Brazil
🇨🇦 Canada
🇨🇿 Czech Republic
🇩🇰 Denmark
🇫🇮 Finland
🇫🇷 France
🇩🇪 Germany
🇬🇷 Greece
🇮🇳 India
🇮🇪 Ireland
🇯🇵 Japan
🇱🇺 Luxembourg
🇲🇽 Mexico
🇳🇱 Netherlands
🇳🇿 New Zealand
🇪🇸 Spain
🇸🇪 Sweden
🇨🇭 Switzerland
🇦🇪 United Arab Emirates
🇬🇧 United Kingdom
🇺🇸 United States

🌏 More countries

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This story was simultaneously published here and at https://AgileScrumGuide.com and https://Exceptional-PMO.com.

The short URL for this article is:
https://bit.ly/teams-2022

© Copyright 2022 Scott M. Graffius. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without the express written permission of Scott M. Graffius.





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