Communicate for resiliency

Another interesting snippet from Managing the Unexpected: communication helps resiliency.

Resiliency is the ability to respond to an unexpected occurrence, deal with it and return to a state close to where you were before.  Remember the example of Fedex, who have a certain number of planes only 60% full, thereby having the ability to flex for extra loads and get back close to where they were.

An example given of an organisation becoming more resilient described how they network to build up links between departments and different areas. By getting to know each other better, when a problem arises, they have several benefits.

  • They know who they can call on for help, and it’s not such a big hurdle calling someone they already know.
  • They know the skillsets of  their colleagues, and hence who is most likely to be able to help with a given problem.
  • People who are being asked for help know and trust the person asking better, so are more likely to help.
  • People know better what backup they have to call on, so can factor this into their plans in advance.
  • When the unexpected occurs, more people are involved, so more people have the chance to learn from it.

Again, an agile principle turns out to build better reliability: “We value Individuals and Interactions over Processes and Tools“.

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