The Role of Proactive and Adaptive Behaviors in Overcoming Individuals-related Challenges of Agile Project Management Implementation Process : A Case Study Within Two Large-sized Banks
Abstract: Introduction: The environment surrounding organizations is changing rapidly as competition is increasing and product life cycles are getting shorter. The classical waterfall project management approach is no longer very effective to cope with these changes, and organizations are trying toadapt more elements of the agile approach. Nevertheless, many challenges are associated with the implementation of agile approach, and some of them are individuals related. Problem background: While the implementation of agile project management approach is associated with many individuals-related challenges, the literature, in most cases, only points outthese difficulties without having a clear explanation why they happen neither from the individuals’ behaviors perspective nor from the implementation process perspective. Purpose: The purpose of this thesis is to develop an understanding on how certain attitudes of(proactive and adaptive) individuals' behaviors would help to overcome some individuals-related challenges during the agile implementation process. More optimistically, this thesis aims to define a framework that shows managers the direct effects of these behavioral attitudes on some individuals-related challenges of agile implementation process. Method: In order to answer the Research question, a qualitative research was conducted. Eight Interviewees from two large-sized banks in Poland and Turkey were interviewed. Findings: Proactive agile team members with ("future-focused”, “self-monitoring", and "selfknowledge-expansion") attitudes seem to have the ability to overcome the challenges of trust incollective responsibility, and resistance to change. However, lacking "change-oriented" attitude amongst those proactive team members will make it harder for them to have interest in "shared decision-making". Furthermore, adaptive team members with ("openness to change" and "compromise") attitudes seem to have the ability to overcome the challenge of resistance to change. However, difficultiesfaced when the "need to adapt" to flat team structure is present will make it harder for them to have interest in "shared decision-making". Conclusion: This study comes contrary to what the literature suggests (that managers are usually the side that shows resistance to include other team members in the decision-making process). "Performers" were found to be the side resisting being included in the decision-making process.This study shows that overcoming "trust in collective responsibility" and "resistance to change" challenges is more realistic approach than focusing on "shared decision-making" which is less interesting and more time consuming for team members. This study is in line with what the "implementation process" literature suggests that: individuals’motivation to perform a behavior is determined by their attitude towards the behavior. As the lack of believe in "shared decision-making" in our study resulted in less motivation to implement this element.
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