What Gaps Does the Business Agility Manifesto Address?

Ronald G.  Ross
Ronald G. Ross Co-Founder & Principal, Business Rule Solutions, LLC , Executive Editor, Business Rules Journal and Co-Chair, Building Business Capability (BBC) Read Author Bio       || Read All Articles by Ronald G. Ross

I've been asked why my co-authors and I created the Business Agility Manifesto.[1]  What gap were we trying to fill?  What problem were we trying to address?

In developing the Manifesto we were trying to close at least two gaps.  They are big gaps — so big they are hard to see and nail down.  As an aside, it took us fully a year to develop the Manifesto.

Fortunately, the two gaps are actually one and the same thing, just looking at the problem from different perspectives.

Gap 1.  We're all aware that agile software development and agile business analysis — all things 'agile' — have had a big impact on the industry.

Agile thinking (and its set of practices) is evolving rapidly, and is now moving well beyond the confines of IT.  It focuses on what I'd call the social or organizational dimension of agility — energizing the work of teams, organizations and leadership.  Those are important and exciting developments.

But agile anything does not guarantee business agility.

Today there are deep, structural problems about how we handle business knowledge that will severely limit the effectiveness of any social or organizational remedies.  In the Manifesto, we get at root causes — long-term fundamental issues.

Gap 2.  Industry-wide, it's clear to us that although we are now in a knowledge economy, companies aren't acting like it.  They simply haven't adjusted to the new reality.  There's a huge gap between what's needed to meet the fast-paced, knowledge-intense demands of the marketplace and the ability of current approaches and systems to address it.

It's hard to pinpoint exactly when we entered the knowledge age, but the emergence of digital thinking and tools — and bots and machine learning, and all the like — clearly signals we're in an altogether new era with respect to knowledge.

The Manifesto explains what the business and practitioners need to do to adjust and thrive in this new reality.  Companies and projects must get their act together — and soon!


[1]  The Business Agility Manifesto:  Building for Change, by Roger T. Burlton,  Ronald G. Ross, and John A. Zachman, 2017, https://busagilitymanifesto.org/ return to article

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Standard citation for this article:

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Ronald G. Ross, "What Gaps Does the Business Agility Manifesto Address?" Business Rules Journal, Vol. 19, No. 4, (Apr. 2018)
URL: http://www.brcommunity.com/a2018/b947.html

About our Contributor:

Ronald  G. Ross
Ronald G. Ross Co-Founder & Principal, Business Rule Solutions, LLC , Executive Editor, Business Rules Journal and Co-Chair, Building Business Capability (BBC)

Ronald G. Ross is Principal and Co-Founder of Business Rule Solutions, LLC, where he actively develops and applies the BRS Methodology including RuleSpeak®, DecisionSpeak and TableSpeak.

Ron is recognized internationally as the "father of business rules." He is the author of ten professional books including the groundbreaking first book on business rules The Business Rule Book in 1994. His newest are:

Ron serves as Executive Editor of BRCommunity.com and its flagship publication, Business Rules Journal. He is a sought-after speaker at conferences world-wide. More than 50,000 people have heard him speak; many more have attended his seminars and read his books.

Ron has served as Chair of the annual International Business Rules & Decisions Forum conference since 1997, now part of the Building Business Capability (BBC) conference where he serves as Co-Chair. He was a charter member of the Business Rules Group (BRG) in the 1980s, and an editor of its Business Motivation Model (BMM) standard and the Business Rules Manifesto. He is active in OMG standards development, with core involvement in SBVR.

Ron holds a BA from Rice University and an MS in information science from Illinois Institute of Technology. Find Ron's blog on http://www.brsolutions.com/category/blog/. For more information about Ron visit www.RonRoss.info. Tweets: @Ronald_G_Ross

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