How to Use Agile Teamwork to Optimize Collaboration

Here’s a fact: people who feel that they’re working collaboratively with others toward a common goal have been shown to stay engaged in projects longer while experiencing less fatigue and higher success rates. It makes perfect sense when you think about it. After all, we humans are social creatures who have accomplished some incredible feats together throughout history. 

It also makes sense, then, that the Agile project management methodology — a process that is rooted in constant communication and collaboration — can reduce the risks of project failure, increase ROI, and lead to happier, more satisfied clients. Read on to discover all the benefits of Agile project management and how you can use it to improve project outcomes within your organization.

What is Agile project management?

Simply put, Agile is a project management method that involves segmenting projects into multiple stages for more constant iteration and collaboration among project team members and stakeholders. 

Agile was originally designed in 2001, specifically for the management of software development projects. Since then, it has become one of the most popular project management methodologies around and has been widely adopted by PMs across departments and industries.

In their Manifesto for Agile Software Development, the founders of Agile stated their methodology’s core values as follows:

  • Individuals and interactions over processes and tools
  • Working software over comprehensive documentation
  • Customer collaboration over contract negotiation
  • Responding to change over following a plan

What are the benefits of Agile project management?

Because Agile places so much emphasis on iteration and collaboration, it facilitates frequent communication between all vested parties and promotes transparency and visibility through the entire project life cycle. This inevitably makes it much easier for project teams to adapt to changes as the project progresses. 

Other Agile project management advantages include:

  • Better project outcomes: The Agile methodology calls for testing at regular intervals throughout the project’s life. This not only allows issues to be identified and corrected along the way, but it also means that the final outcome will have gone through multiple iterations and improvements by the time it’s ready for delivery.
  • Enhanced ROI and project predictability: By implementing Agile techniques, PMs can more easily predict the costs and ROI of a given project. For instance, keeping sprint lengths and team budget allocations consistent enables you to predict the precise cost of each sprint.
  • More satisfied clients: Because Agile projects include continuous client engagement and feedback, your customers will feel more ownership over the outcome and help ensure that they get exactly what they’re looking for. After all, client satisfaction is the most important aspect of project delivery at the end of the day.

How to use Agile project management for team collaboration

There are multiple ways to implement Agile project management, and the ways in which your teams collaborate will depend on the specific Agile framework you’re using. 

For example, the scrum framework utilizes small teams (called “scrums”) that are led by a scrum master, whose main job is to clear roadblocks and ensure the scrum has what it needs to complete its work. The scrum framework is based on short cycles or iterations of work called sprints; each sprint consists of planning, a demo, and a retrospective, as well as daily meetings in which the scrum master and scrum team review what’s been done, what’s working, and what needs immediate attention.

Another popular Agile framework is called kanban. Kanban is a visual approach to project management in which teams create physical representations of tasks, typically with online apps or good old-fashioned sticky notes on whiteboards. As the project progresses, tasks are moved through predetermined stages to track progress and identify obstacles. Because all work is visible, team members know exactly where the project is at all times and can quickly move from task to task.

Of course, the fundamentals of team building still apply no matter which Agile framework you choose to use. Here are some other tips for team collaboration:

  • Make time for team building and learning about one another. When project team members build rapport with each other, they also establish trust, break down barriers, and open up lines of communication. 
  • Solicit feedback from everyone. Some team members will naturally be more introverted and less likely to speak up during meetings — but that doesn’t mean they don’t have good ideas. Take the time to find their preferred communication style and make sure their voices are heard. 
  • Use the right tools for sharing and collaborating. More specifically, software that is designed to meet the needs of Agile teams will help you reap the full benefits of Agile project management.

How Wrike can help with Agile team collaboration

With Wrike’s powerful project management platform, you’ll not only have everything you need to organize and run your Agile projects from end-to-end, but you’ll also arm your team members with the tools they need to collaborate effectively. 

Wrike’s Agile teamwork template allows you to break down all work into tasks, create and prioritize backlogs, and set up and manage sprints. And, you’ll be able to easily manage it all right from your Agile project management dashboard. 

Want to see just how easy and effective Agile teamwork can be? Sign up below for a free two-week trial and put Wrike through its paces! 

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