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Jabbok River Group

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The Agile Mindset Includes

Boldly Architecting the Whole Company

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In order to achieve true Agility in your organization you need to properly design the organization itself.

I have the privilege of training and teaching ambitious students at Northwestern University’s Farley Center for Entrepreneurship in how to design and operate a truly 21st Century Agile company. While many entrepreneur courses focus on merely developing a product and its related markets, my course called “Radical Entrepreneurship” trains students how to participate in, and operate an Agile enterprise. What many entrepreneurs like Steve Jobs have learned as far back as 1985 when he was founding NeXT computers (pictured above) is that today the true competitive advantage is in how one architects the company itself. Products pivot, or they come and go entirely, today even faster than ever. Read More



Image courtesy: http://friendshipismagicfanon.wikia.com/wiki/File:JediKnights.jpg

Remembering Agile and Scrum Values

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Experienced Agile practitioners and thought leaders are like Jedi, and have known for some time that agility is not merely a set of practices like Scrum but true agility is grounded in an agile mindset. I had the privilege to help institute a Learning Consortium that brought together a group of advanced agile practitioners at Magna International [MGA], Ericsson [ERIC]Solutions IQMicrosoft [MSFT]Riot Games, CH Robninson [CHRW]agile42Brillio, and Menlo Innovations. One of the key findings was that for an Agile culture and operations to truly flourish the members must incorporate a certain mindset and exhibit a set of supporting values. Read More

Oct. 26, 2015

Learning Consortium for the Creative Economy

We Went Exploring
I had the privilege of traveling with and visiting nine companies this past summer that have courageously and boldly moved their management cultures and practices into radical new ways and I am thrilled to now share this summary of what we discovered. When you see how this is really happening—at scale—it can be so amazing and beautiful, so efficacious and humanizing, that you begin to wonder: why doesn’t everyone organize in this manner? What rational leader and manager would want to even consider any other such approach in today’s fast-changing, creative economy? Read more…

Feb. 2, 2015

Will You Crash Your Company by Using the Wrong Math?

When NASA applied the wrong math they lost the $125M Mars Climate Orbiter. One team applied English units while all the other teams were using Metric units and the Orbiter crashed when approaching Mars at an altitude of only 37 miles instead of the planned 93 miles. Apply a 20th Century mathematical model and you risk crashing your organization up against the 21st Century economic planet we now all do our business upon. Read more…

Jan 28, 2015

Are You Ready for an Agile Paradigm Shift?

What is your management mental map? Can you make the shift to an Agile mindset? Or have you already? Do you live with a 21st Century Agile paradigm or a 20th Century bureaucratic management paradigm? Well written studies are now being regularly released that help explain how we are in the midst of a complete change in the theory and practice of management. Business thought leaders such as Steven Denning, author of Radical Management, Reinventing the Workplace for the 21st Century observes that the transformation of management mindsets and methods is no less than a Copernican Revolution with all the characteristics of an actual Thomas Kuhn-like paradigm shift. Read more…

Jan 24, 2015

IBM’s Epic Fail and the Copernican Revolution

Is IBM the first epic casualty of the Creative Economy? IBM’s eleven consecutive quarterly losses and just announced massive restructuring may be indicating you can no longer make a 20th Century elephant dance, at least with an IBM style 20th Century mental map. Gerstner and his army of fellow McKinsey associates demonstrated this during IBM’s last epic turnaround failure that was conducted largely through financial engineering for the goal of maximizing shareholder value (the 20th Century management’s “Dumbest Idea in the World”). Read more…

Feb 20, 2015

What Does “Scaling Agile” Really Mean?

Scaling Agile appears to be the hottest Agile topic right now. Scrum Alliance, the largest and fastest growing body of Agile practitioners with over 375,000 worldwide members has just introduced what they are calling an “Additional Qualification” or AQ that certified Scrum Masters and Product Owners can add like a Scouting badge after taking one of the soon to be approved scaling courses. Read more…

June 9, 2015

What to Name Chicago’s Burgeoning Tech Scene?

With Apologies to my Silicon Valley friends

Thank you Melissa Harris for elevating the conversation about what we should nickname Chicago’s burgeoning tech scene (“Silicon Prairie”: Love it or loathe it?” Chicago Tribune, Sunday June 7, 2015 – subscription required.)  I agree with your readers who are NOT in favor of using “Silicon Prairie” so I will take up your challenge to find a better name. Read More

J. Stanton Goldstein is the founder and managing partner of Jabbok River Group, a Chicago-based Agile Services Firm. As a practicing Agile professional, he has held senior leadership positions in B2B and B2C tech companies in computer, commercial electronics and cloud software.

As an Agile evangelist with certifications from Scrum Alliance, the Agile Coaching Institute, Large Scale Scrum (LeSS), and Enterprise Scrum, he has consulted, coached, facilitated and trained Fortune 100 companies such as Microsoft and Ericsson, and over 100 other Fortune and early stage ventures. Jay is authorized to train for Certificates in Enterprise Scrum (Business Agility and Software Scaling) and Radical Management.

.   More about Jay…

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email: jayg@jabbokriver.com

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