written by Joern Bock VP, Project Management
Agile Stars – Meeting of the Agile pioneers in Germany
Agile Stars – Meeting of the Agile pioneers in Germany
15.06.2016
About author Joern Bock Joern Bock VP, Project Management

“Agile Stars” is a new conference format, where the pioneers of Agile companies come together to discuss Agile topics and exchange knowledge during a two-day workshop. Agile Stars is an exclusive format for selected pioneers with a high degree of maturity of Agile organization. The second Agile Stars conference took place at AOE in Wiesbaden in June 2016.

Agile Stars was initiated by HR Pioneers, a Cologne-based startup led by André Häusling, which is dedicated to revolutionizing management using agile personnel- and organizational development as well as autonomously working employees. In addition to his work as managing director, André Häusling is also a book author, docent at the Technical College Essen and a sought-after speaker at conferences dealing with agile topics.

What is Agile Stars?

The Agile Stars format focuses on companies with the following characteristics, designed to ensure that a homogeneous group of companies with similar challenges and problems is found:

  • More than 30 employees
  • Innovative understanding of corporate- and personnel management
  • Extremely high degree of Agile maturity and actively practiced Agile corporate culture in the entire organization (not limited to software development)

Thematically, the Agile Stars deals with challenges that can arise in already-established Agile corporate cultures. For these Agile pioneers from different industries, the conference provides a platform for knowledge exchange and discussion. Topics concerning early stages of Agile methods, such as implementing Agile software development and related challenges, are explicitly excluded.

“Agile Self-Help Group”: Conference Format

Completely in the spirit of a BarCamp, the program is structured in a self-organized manner. Topics and agenda are developed by the participants and worked on in a workshop format. Such topics can include career paths in companies without hierarchies, systematically increasing the personal responsibility of individuals and teams or self-organized compensation models.

Topics and Talks of the second Agile Stars

Highlight of the second Agile Stars was the presentation of Prof. Dr. Stephan Fischer, academic dean and professor of personnel management and corporate consulting at the University Pforzheim, who provided scientific and organizational theory insights into Agile management.

During the course of the conference, each participating company had the opportunity to present a current topic from day-to-day Agile practice. Some of the questions discussed included:

  • How can companies find candidates with an Agile mindset?
  • How can one develop employees in an Agile company without hierarchies – while also pointing out perspectives?
  • How can a separation culture be actively “lived” in self-organized teams?

One interesting finding was that, for every question raised, there was at least one additional company that had to master similar challenges. Accordingly, experiences, knowledge and approaches to solve the problem could be spontaneously exchanged – which led to spirited discussions where all participants could offer input as well as receive valuable insights, suggestions as well as specific examples. The general consensus: Agile Stars brings Germany’s Agile pioneers to one table and should definitely be continued. In addition, the participants agreed that a community should be created.

The evening program with a tour of the Henkell cellars and a tasting of sparkling wines in the chic Henkellhaus complemented the event – and highlighted two very successful days in Wiesbaden!
You can find the Agile Stars blogpost from HR Pioneers here...