Over the last years, I have time and again run into the conflict that many companies experience between long term planning and continuous (agile) practices. In an embedded systems context, where the system contains mechanics and electronics in addition to software, the organization needs long term planning for “the atoms” because of manufacturing processes, ordering … Read moreThe End of Planning
During a conference in Vienna, I listened to a keynote from a researcher from a large industrial company. The talk was full of the promise of IoT, connectivity, cloud, edge computing and apps and the business benefits that could be realized. The presenter did a good job, but I have heard these presentations on the … Read moreWhere Is This IoT World That I was Promised?
Most of the software-intensive systems companies that I work with are in the process of converting from pure product businesses to product + service or pure services businesses. This is a huge change for any company and means changes at several levels and all functions of the company. Over the last months, I have been … Read moreThe End Of Product Companies
Reflecting on software intensive companies during the summer break made me think about the way investment decisions are made and what new approaches, such as continuous integration and deployment as well as data analytics, mean for these investment decisions. A key principle that I learned while working in Silicon Valley is to minimize investment between … Read moreHow To Double Your R&D Effectiveness – Part II
As I am starting up my weekly blog posts again after a great vacation in Japan and the Netherlands, I thought I’d start with a more personal post. The trigger for this is that (drum-rolls please) I turned 50 this summer, meaning that I’ve been walking around on this rock hurtling itself through space for … Read moreGetting Stuck In Your Comfort Zone (Or: How To Score A Free Lunch)
Another week of travel behind me while working with great teams at really wonderful European companies. As I typically get involved to work with organizations to introduce new platforms or new businesses or to realize fundamental transformations, I work with cross-functional teams where individuals from different parts of the organization are put together in order … Read moreWhy Cross-Functional Teams Should Be The Norm
During another week on the road (Zurich, Paris and Stuttgart this time) and after discussions with dozens of people at the conferences and meetings, I noticed a pattern that repeats itself again and again in technology driven companies. For the latest major digitalization technologies, such as big data, IoT and deep learning, I have observed … Read moreIt’s Not Technology That Is Holding Us Back
This week we organized the reporting workshop of the Software Center that I am director for. It’s always a great event with lots of participants from the ten companies participating the center and researchers from the five universities that are members. We present a variety of technologies, techniques, methods and frameworks that have been developed … Read moreOvercoming Inertia in Organizational Change
Although there are still companies out there that are going through the agile transformation, most of the companies that I work with have adopted agile practices at least at the team level. Agile teams are more empowered and because of that, among others, more productive and more motivated. However, if we lift our focus up … Read moreHow Agile Are You Really?
Everyone loves order. Order gives structure, predictability, safety and comfort. Our brains are wired to seek order, either by shaping the world around us to maximize it or by avoiding situations where we might lose it. There is nothing more comfortable than sitting smack in the middle of our comfort zone. For the entire history … Read moreThe End of Order