Agile & Embedded Approaches in People Management

Jun 14, 2019

With this article we are starting a new series about applying a agile & embedded approach to learning and problem solving. I will be developing the series together with both my team at Pleinert & Partner as well as with my colleagues at the Pleinert & Partner Braintrust.

Blog - Agile & Embedded Approaches in People Management


We define as Agile & Embedded methods of tackling problem solving and learning objectives by alternating a cycle of:

  • Short sessions / workshops of learning, brainstorming, problem solving
  • Reflection and small ‘homework’* tasks to be completed until the next session
  • Preparation, review and ongoing adaptation of the series based on findings

* ‘Homework’ can be for example consciously observing certain behaviors or mechanisms to retell as a minicase, or gathering data that has been identified as relevant to the discussion

In the area of people management and organizational development these can be applied to

§ Developing, communicating a vision or strategy and building support for it

§ Team building and developing soft skills such as leadership, communication, dealing with conflicts, etc

§ Creating or reviewing and improving people management processes and organizational structures


Advantages of such an approach are:

Increasing effectiveness (ie. increasing upside potential)

  • Agility and real time relevance: the program is reviewed and adapted based on findings between each session
  • Anchoring of learning in every day practice through alternating of workshops and observation or information gathering in the operative business

Increasing efficiency (ie. reducing the downside created by costs)

  • using less financial resources
  • requiring less time (time invested by all participants)    
  • causing less disruption of ongoing every day business

ROI on the investment of resources can be expected to be substantially higher for Agile & Embedded methods than for traditional approaches where typically larger, monolithic workshop or training units are used with much less opportunity for anchoring learning and insights in practice.

To be continued. And we look forward to your comments!