Do we meet for competing or collaborating? It is very easy to find a meetup to meet new people after work in the Bay Area. There are hundreds of events from Eventbrite and Meetup.com. By the way, which event creates support for Agile?
The Bay Area Agile Potluck Series is one of many outstanding events. It was founded by Chris Gagne, an Agile coach at eBay. The Agile potluck brings small groups of people together and creates a deeper bond of support. Yesterday eight people gathered with amazing food to have dinner and wine together. Of course, we had a wonderful conversation about Agile: how do we begin to shift a culture towards Agile? What mindset does it take?
Lydia Sugarman, the CEO of Personal Health Cloud and many other companies, threw her ideas on the table and suggested that we should have a checklist of the ways people present themselves and how to interact with them. I proposed that the Four Animals Leadership framework might help us to know people.
The four animals are a bull, bear, eagle, and mouse.
A bull is a hunter. People with the bull mindset like pushing, working hard, and speaking directly. If you want to deal with bull people, you will have to hit to the point from the beginning. A bear is big and slow. People with the bear mindset like having a ton of information before making a decision. Please prepare support information with many choices for a bear manager. He/she will spend a long period of time contemplating options before saying yes or no. So when dealing with a bear, please present your proposal ahead of time. An eagle likes flying over to seek food. People with the eagle mindset like talking about their ideas all the time but they will not work on their imagination. You should assign a clear project and work with eagle people closely. A mouse is tiny and cute. People with the mouse mindset like being treated politely and do not like confrontation. You might have to speak softly to mouse people and then they will be happy to talk to you.
We played this game by saying what kind of animals we identified ourselves as. Through this process, we got to know each other a bit more. As a result, we acknowledged how we work or communicate with each other. Finally, the Four Animals Leadership Direction can initiate new culture of our Agile Potluck event.
I can say that all participants are amazing. We shared not only food, but also ideas and emotions. This will create possibilities for real collaboration in Agile. Importantly, the event created love among attendees, who now call each other friends. Thank you for having me yesterday. All of you are awesome! (Chris Gagne, Nico Toneff, Edward Gordon, David Posey, Caroline Ayres, Lydia Sugarman, and Chloe Hollingsworth)