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Agile Leadership: Evolution of Technology Leadership In The 21st Century

What is Agile Leadership?

Software engineering has taken over the world, and it’s safe to say that the software industry runs everything. Technology has transformed every aspect of our lives, and the change is only getting faster. We have seen leaders like Steve Jobs, Elon Musk, and Mark Zuckerberg setting the tone for technology leadership, and they are considered icons of innovation, disruption, and success.

However, things have changed, and the traditional command and control model of leadership is no longer the primary model for technology teams. Agile leadership has taken over, and scrum masters are the leaders that run technology teams.

Agile methodology is a flexible and iterative approach to software development that emphasizes collaboration, adaptability, and continuous improvement. This approach is different from the traditional command and control model because it empowers teams to work together to solve problems and make decisions, with a focus on delivering value to customers.

Agile methodology is based on the principles of servant leadership (also called as lean agile leadership in Scaled Agile), where the leader serves the needs of the team and the customer. Servant leaders focus on creating a culture of trust, collaboration, and empowerment, where team members are encouraged to take ownership of their work and contribute their ideas and insights to the project.

Agility as a Catalyst for Cultural Change in Leadership

Agile methodology has not only revolutionized the way technology teams work, but it has also had a significant impact on the culture of leadership in organizations. The servant leadership model that is inherent in agile methodology emphasizes collaboration, empathy, and a focus on serving the needs of the team and the customer. This is a stark contrast to the traditional command and control model of leadership that has been prevalent in organizations for decades.

As more organizations adopt agile methodology and servant leadership, we can expect to see a cultural shift in the way leadership is perceived and practiced. This shift will likely lead to more empathetic leaders who prioritize communication, collaboration, and continuous improvement, which can lead to more innovative solutions and better outcomes for customers.

Moreover, agile methodology encourages a culture of transparency and openness, where team members are encouraged to speak up and share their ideas and insights. This creates an environment where everyone’s contributions are valued, leading to a more inclusive and diverse workplace. As organizations continue to embrace agility and servant leadership, we can expect to see a positive impact on the culture of leadership, resulting in more effective and empathetic leaders.

The Benefits of Agile Leadership in Technology

Agile leadership benefits technology growth in may ways, some examples below:

Increased productivity: Agile methodology enables teams to work more efficiently by breaking down work into smaller, manageable tasks and delivering incremental value to customers. This can lead to faster project completion times and higher productivity overall.

Faster time-to-market: Agile methodology emphasizes frequent delivery of working software, allowing organizations to quickly respond to changing market conditions and customer needs. This can help businesses stay ahead of the competition and deliver products or services to market faster.

Improved customer satisfaction: Agile methodology puts a strong focus on customer collaboration and delivering value to customers. By involving customers in the development process and delivering incremental value, organizations can ensure that they are meeting customer needs and expectations, resulting in higher satisfaction levels.

Reduced risk: Agile methodology allows for regular feedback and course correction, helping to mitigate risk and avoid costly mistakes. By delivering working software in small increments, organizations can catch and fix issues early on, reducing the risk of larger problems later in the development process.

Improved employee morale: Agile methodology promotes a culture of collaboration, transparency, and continuous improvement. When people are part of the process, they tend to be more engaged than when being just managed.

By embracing agile leadership and servant leadership principles, organizations in the technology industry can enjoy these benefits and more, ultimately leading to greater success in today’s fast-paced and ever-changing business landscape.

Learning about agility is critical to building a career in tech. With the rise of agile methodology, many tech companies are looking for professionals who are well-versed in agile leadership and scrum methodology. As such, understanding agile principles and practices is becoming increasingly important for those looking to pursue a career in technology.

In addition, many tech professionals find that adopting agile methodology helps them to work more effectively and efficiently, leading to greater job satisfaction and career success. By embracing agile principles and practices, individuals can develop the skills and mindset necessary to become effective leaders in the rapidly evolving tech industry.

Ilam Padmanabhan, founder of, has 20 years of experience in the Tech/Financial services industry. Find out more at



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