Dan Montgomery is the first person I’ve heard that connects OKRs with strategy. But Dan is not talking about this old industrial mindset of predicting and then controlling in yesterday’s strategy process. Dan lifts the idea of sensing and responding, the heart behind what he calls agile strategy. He also explains why OKRs are the engine to this strategy framework which consists of continuous experimentation. We learn more in his book, Start Less Finish More.
Who Is Dan Montgomery?
- Founder and Managing Director at Agile Strategies
- Author of Start Less Finish More
- Professsional background: human resources, systems and process designer, psychotherapist, executive coach, business strategist
When I discovered balanced scorecard in 2001, I thought I’d found the Holy Grail of management.Dan Montgomery
- Limitations of The Balanced Scorecard
- The big ‘A’ in strategy – agile
- OKRs as the missing element in The Balanced Scorecard and agile strategy
- Strategic Planning – not an event
- Strategic executiion vs strategic formulation
- Multicausal systems
- The Cynefin framework
- The Agile Development Manifesto
- Platonic values
- The STEEP framework
- Minimal viable strategy
- What makes a great team (according to Google)?
You can’t predict the future, but you can recognize it faster when it starts to happen.Dan Montgomery
One of my favorite concepts in Dan’s book is about multicausal systems, a topic we hit during the interview.
I enjoyed reading about Dan’s conversation with the co-founder of Rally Software, an agile pioneer.
… on average, civil engineering students solve 3500 problems by the time they graduate. These are all problems that have been predefined and have a correct solution. What engineering students don’t learn to do in school is ask the questions that frame the problem in the first place.Montgomery, Dan. Start Less, Finish More: Building Strategic Agility with Objectives and Key Results . Agile Strategies
The Five Pillars of Agile Strategy
In the book Start Less Think More, Dan outlines the five prongs to agile strategy. I list them below along with my thoughts on each critical I-N-G word:
- The Trickiest – Assessing
- The Most Important – Focusing
- The Most Paralyzing – Committing
- The Most Frustrating – Acting
- The Most Underrated – Learning
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Strategy is not a plan to be executed but a hypothesis about what your customers value, and it must be continuously validated.Dan Montgomery