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How Playing it Agile Can Improve Both Your Professional and Personal Environment

How Playing it Agile Can Improve Both Your Professional and Personal Environment

Can agile best practices go well beyond the world of business and into your personal life? Adrian Aringhe, Scrum Master II at EPAM in Romania, believes that the principles of Agile can extend beyond the business world and into our personal lives. In this interview, Adrian shares his personal experience and offers valuable advice and strategies to make our lives more enjoyable by adopting an agile mindset. Adrian is a Certified Scrum Master with more than 10 years of experience in both national and multinational companies. He is passionate about helping others and improving processes to achieve goals and has chosen to focus his career on agile and being an advocate for this approach.

From your perspective, can you pinpoint what strengths are most important in an agile environment? 

In my perspective, the most important strengths in an agile environment include effective communication, focus on continuous improvement, commitment and respect.

Tell us more about how agile can be adopted both in your professional and personal life.

Firstly, being agile in the workplace has changed how teams operate and produce results in the business world. There are a few agile critical elements that can increase our productivity and effectiveness:

  • Encouraging an attitude of gradual development. This strategy enables regular feedback, modification, and ongoing development and may help us prevent becoming overwhelmed and keep a steady pace toward attaining our goals.

  • Fostering a collaborative environment that promotes efficient communication and cross-functional teamwork by encouraging a collaborative environment will result in creative ideas, quicker problem-solving and increased production.

  • Adapting to change as an opportunity rather than a disruption. We may react more effectively to shifting objectives, market needs, and unanticipated challenges by embracing change and being open to regular modifications.

Agile ideas can be used outside of work environments as well and may be used in our daily lives to produce transformative effects. Here are some ways that I use agile in my daily life:

  • Agile methodologies can transform our approach to setting and achieving personal goals. We may improve our odds of success and retain momentum by defining SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Time-bound) goals, breaking them down into smaller milestones and constantly reassessing our progress.

  • Agile concepts can help us use time more effectively and strike a healthy work-life balance. Be mindful to reflect on your own behavior and prioritize your personal aspirations over your professional ones.

In both our professional and personal lives, adopting Agile ideals may increase our productivity, and adaptability and give us a sense of balance. Accepting change, encouraging teamwork and using iterative strategies may help us overcome challenges and achieve our goals more effectively. By making thoughtful goal selections, using efficient time management, and adopting a growth-oriented mindset, we can achieve our potential and live happy lives.

One way in which I applied agile methods in my personal life is through the VEF-van, a hobby of mine that evolved into something more significant.

Let's embark on an agile adventure to simplify and enhance our lives, with practical pointers and strategies to apply agile principles professionally and personally.

  • Accept iteration: Divide your work, goals and projects into more manageable, smaller units. Pay attention to small victories along the way, celebrate progress and adapt your ideas in response to review cycles and newly emerging information.

  • Experiment and learn: Adopt an attitude of constant experimentation and learning. Accept setbacks as chances to improve, learn and approach problems with a curiosity-driven perspective. To gather knowledge that will guide your future actions, try out new approaches, experiment with various methods and evaluate the results.

  • Practice time management: To increase your output, use Agile time management strategies. Set tasks in order of priority and urgency, allot specific time intervals for concentrated work and review and change your schedule frequently to take account of changing priorities.

  • Growth mindset: Adopt the mindset of seeing failures as opportunities for improvement and keeping a positive outlook on change.

  • Focus on effective communication: In all Agile environments, effective communication is essential. Encourage open and honest communication with coworkers, friends and family to create more enduring connections and promote understanding, express your ideas, pay attention to what others have to say and offer helpful feedback.

  • Find balance: Keep in mind that agile emphasizes both professional goal achievement and the maintenance of a positive work-life balance. Set limits and schedule time for your interests, hobbies and self-care. Focus on self-reflection and ensure that your personal goals continue to come before your professional ones.

That’s a very nice way to put it. Could you please tell us whose career inspires you and why?

There are several well-known people who have made major contributions to the agile community, that could serve as career inspiration for anyone. Jeff Sutherland, the co-creator of Scrum, is one role model. His tireless efforts to modernize project management and advance Agile principles have had a significant impact on motivating many people to adopt an agile mindset and advance their projects.

What advice would you give to a younger version of yourself?

To a younger version of myself, I would suggest adopting a growth mindset and being willing to learn from every experience or situation encountered.

What is the biggest factor that helped you be successful? 

The main thing that has made me successful is my willingness to always advance, change, and look for chances to advance both personally and professionally. My journey has been greatly aided by accepting obstacles as learning opportunities and being proactive in developing new abilities.

To sum it up, adopting agile concepts can improve productivity, adaptability, and a sense of balance in both our professional and personal life. We can overcome obstacles more successfully and succeed in our goals by accepting change, promoting teamwork, and adopting iterative approaches.

One thing is for sure, you can decide for yourself regarding the result. Will you choose to use the agile principles in both your personal and professional life starting from now on?