Management 3.0 : Redefining Leadership


As an agile coach and a scrum trainer, I often get the question from new agile practitioners: where is the management role in the Scrum framework? Or, are agile frameworks marking the end of management?

For a long time, I answered this question by emphasizing decentralized decision-making and the distributed leadership between the three main roles of a scrum team (Scrum Master, Product Owner, and Developers). However, I felt that my answer was quite incomplete.

Indeed, the blame cannot be solely put on managers as I truly believe that is the responsibility of the agile community to coach and help make the transition. From old models of management to new ways of leading in a more complex world.

But wait, Why Management 3.0?

Just as software development and complex project management made the transition to agile mindset (from project to product). We need agile managers to embrace complexity thinking and move from managing people to managing systems.

Before defining Management 3.0, let’s have a look at management 1.0 and 2.0.

Management 1.0

Alae-Eddine KRIBII has worked and lived in more than 6 countries (France, United Kingdom, Luxembourg, Canada, Netherlands, and Morocco) for 7 years working for major multi-national organizations. Natural servant-leader and passionate about agile mindset, he has developed his international experiences deep expertise in change management. Alae-Eddine work focuses on people (teams, managers, and stakeholders) engagement, inclusion, and happiness in order to deliver the highest performance as well as the best customer-centric value.

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Management 1.0 represents the old model of management and could be summarized as « doing the wrong thing ». In this type of model, people are referred to as resources, which means that organization is doing resource management. You will not surprisingly find « Ressources » assigned to multiple projects.


Here is a funny story from Don Reinertsen ( published on LeSS website Lean Thinking – Large Scale Scrum (LeSS)) to convey why this mindset does not make sense.

« Consider a relay race. The racers are standing around waiting for the baton from their colleague. The accountant in the finance department, looking aghast at this terrible underutilization of ‘waste,’ would probably mandate a policy goal of “95% utilization of resources” to ensure all the racers are busy and “productive.” Maybe—he would suggest—the runners could run three races at the same time to increase “resource utilization,” or they could run up a mountain while waiting for the baton.

Funny… But this kind of thinking lies behind much of traditional management and product development processes. In contrast, here is a central idea in lean thinking:

Watch the baton not the racers »

Management 2.0

On the other hand, Management 2.0 could be referred to as « doing the right thing wrong ». In organizations with a management 2.0 mindset, people are (at least) recognized as the most valuable asset. Concepts such as « servant leadership » are starting to make their way within the company. However, the organization prefers to stick to the hierarchy.



Management 3.0

Finally, some people think of an organization as a community or a city. You can do what you want, as long as you allow the community to benefit from your work.



What are the Management 3.0 principles?

Management 3.0 is very close to the lean thinking pillars which are:

  1. Respect for people, and,
  2. Continuous Improvement.

Similarly, Management 3.0 is based on two pillars as well, « Management and Leadership » and « Complexity Thinking ». The other 6 principles are:

  • Empower teams
  • Align constraints
  • Develop competence
  • Energize people
  • Grow structure
  • Improve everything

How to use Management 3.0?

In this perspective, Management 3.0 by Jurgen Appelo offers the mindset, the tools as well as the most comprehensive set of practical workshops that every manager and non-manager can start using today to redefine leadership.

In this series of 7+ articles, I would like to share with you my experience facilitating management 3.0 workshops: (you can find more information on these workshops by clicking on each one of them)


Let’s redefine together management to « lead agile developers by developing agile leaders » (Jurgen Appelo, Management 3.0).

Please feel free to reach out to me for feedback and to exchange experiences!

Thank you very much for reading.😊


Published On: septembre 27th, 2021 / Categories: Management /

About the Author: Coach Virtuel

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