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Agile Mindset: Why You Should Think Like A Millennial


Right now you are probably wondering “What does this have to do with Scrum or the right Agile mindest?”  

A lot, actually. Because perspective matters.Agile mindset why you should think like a millennial

I have worked with a number of companies in many different cultures and one thing always stands out to me - the reaction to the word “No”.

Boomers and GenXers like me have been in the corporate world now for 20+ years. We were taught that in order to succeed you need to follow orders, ask permission, always get clearance before you act. And that red tape is annoying, but inevitable, and must be endured.

We have become numb to the word “No” in that we just accept it, we don’t challenge it.  

Millennials have had a different upbringing. And a very different and more agile perspective.

When I go into an organization to lead an Agile Transformation, the Millennials have a couple of things going for them:

  • They want to learn.
  • They’re willing to challenge impediments.
  • And, perhaps most importantly, they have a different reaction to the word “No”.

If they have a problem, they don’t wait for someone else to solve it or send an email about it, they “Google it” or “YouTube it” and solve it without the concern of someone telling them they aren’t “allowed” to do something.

This is not a grand generalization. It’s a pattern I see again and again in all kinds of clients. It’s why the new intern-packed Scrum Teams can, and often do, outperform other new teams loaded with experience. I have had teams of interns or those straight out of college that kicked butt.  

Very few things trump experience unless that experience tells you to put your head down and just take orders. To get the most out of Scrum and Agile you must be willing to challenge the status quo. Be willing to push back against no. You need a bias for action, not a reliance on instructions.

In short, it really does help to think like a Millenial.