A Movement for New Ways to Work, Defined by You

“In Flow, Fin Goulding and Haydn Shaughnessy provide a wonderful combination of principles and practices for technology leaders, not only for improving their teams’ outcomes, but to help bring all other business stakeholders along on the journey too. Highly recommended.” – Gene Kim, co-author The Phoenix Project and The DevOps Handbook.

How you go about empowering people to work better is one of the most difficult challenges in the modern workplace. It can be traced back to how we design work. All “frameworks” are really structures, or hierarchies, of work. All structures lead from a high level idea, or work area, to a low level task or unit of work.

Project management is the most entrenched hierarchy of all. Scrum is not far behind. They provide benefits but have drawbacks. It is contradictory to empower people them give them rules to follow.

Flows principles of empowerment:

    1. Smart people will create their own rules if they have the right guidance. In Flow we encourage value-seeking behaviour at all stages of work.  We want to be agile so we can find and deliver value. Value has traditionally been interpreted as less waste. We are pro-value. Pro-value ideals guide the work breakdown process.
    2. To be pro-value you have to start with customers even before you think of products. You need to have a constant feel for how markets are changing and be ready to deliver, at pace. But you also need customers in your feedback loops so their experience informs work design and strategy.
    3. Because you have to work at pace, we aim to work in two-day cycles or less. The benefit is constant interaction guided by value. Because innovation is now more matrix-like, the level of interaction opens up the power and collective intelligence of the crowd.

A Customer-Centred Framework for Agile Transformation

Flow provides a simple, common sense way to break work down into areas of work and units of work. Work design is always visual and often just-in-time.

What is Flow

Everyone can see the work design and contribute to it. Everyone knows what work is coming their way. Work is always defined by seeking value for customer segments. It always incorporates customer feedback loops.

Agile portfolio management

We are on a mission to bring executives into the agile loop with Executive Portfolio Walls. In most organisations, waste starts at the top with pet projects and ill-considered investments. We want leaders to grasp the simplicity of change, and accept the need for empowerment and manage what comes next with Flow.

portfolio wall

Flow is an end-to-end system of customer-focused innovation, visualisation and feedback.

Flow in Practice

How do you start the Flow?

Think of the matrix of innovation going on in your organisation. You need that to Flow like a calm, wide, and deep river.

Flow helps with that challenge. And what’s important to grasp is:

  • It really does not need a huge amount of time to learn;
  • It is short on rituals and rules;
  • But you do have to create trust and win trust;
  • Which makes it a different deal for leaders.

We wrote Flow: A Handbook for Change-Makers and 12 Steps to Flow to guide people through the implementation process. Flow can be picked up quickly by anyone with a background in agile, though it does need some training.

It can also be picked up quickly by Executives because a critical part of Flow is agile portfolio construction and management. The best start point? The books, or, talk to us.

What others are saying about Flow

  • Flow and Flow Academy offer tremendous value to anyone looking to transform the way their teams and organisations work. Thought provoking guidance that challenges me to rethink everything

    Jim Dolce
    Jim Dolce VP Technology Strategy, FujiFilm North America
  • The essence of agility is enabling new behaviors and thinking to emerge throughout your organization. Fin and Haydn outline an actionable· yet minimal framework to innovate your ways of working and create a culture of experimentation and learning. The lessons, methods and tools shared in this book will provide you with an effective guide to succeed on your own journey towards higher performance, better results and flow.

    Barry O'Reilly
    Barry O'Reilly Founder of ExecCamp, author of
  • Goulding and Shaughnessy provide a method to move from doing digital to being digital. They have identified the shortcomings of the industrial era model and have developed an inspiring philosophy that blends people, process and innovation in a manner that will have people nothing short of rushing to work each day. They recognise that work in the digital age is essentially a form of self-expression directed towards the condition of the customer. Flow is more than a philosophy, it is a practical methodology designed to engage all stakeholders, and to ultimately harness the full cognitive capacity of the organisation's people. This is compulsory reading for business leaders.

    Ade McCormack International CIO, Advisor and Speaker
  • Flow is the perfect introduction to Business & Technical agility for those who are new to the field. It is smart/intuitive challenge to those readers who see themselves as experts. At its core it redefines how we go about digital transformation and create the new agile business.

    Serena de Stacpoole
    Serena de Stacpoole Innovation Lead, Aviva
  • It's not often I find a book that I pick up a book and say "Those guys can talk the talk and walk the walk"! In Flow you get a common sense blueprint for doing an Agile Transformation from scratch, out of the box and in a very visual format. Buy this book, learn from this book and then start experimenting in your organisation. This will give you better communication, visibility of work and also keep you focused on the human factors in your Agile Transformations.

    Scott Sievwright
    Scott Sievwright Agile Coach, Royal Bank of Scotland and Agile
  • Fantastic insight into Flow principles using real examples. A step into the future in a wonderfully presented book.

    Amazon Review
    Amazon Review
  • Another great set of tools for the CIOIDTO toolbox. I'm a big fan of the "Wall" concept, as it promotes a high degree of collaboration and awareness without the technology getting in the way.

    Abe McIntosh Digital Transformation Leader
  • In Flow, Fin Goulding and Haydn Shaughnessy provide a wonderful combination of principles and practices for technology leaders, not only for improving their teams' outcomes, but to help them bring all their other business stakeholders along on the journey too.  Highly recommended.

    Gene Kim
    Gene Kim Co-author The Phoenix Project and The Devops Handbook
  • Ever wondered why your Agile journey has not delivered the outcomes you were looking for? Fin and Haydn take you beyond the process, planning and control thinking of the past in this practical toolkit laying out how to execute on digital transformation. Reading Flow will make you wish you’d applied the logic, tools and insights earlier. Do however be prepared to re-think some old habits! Flow is all about creating the right culture for change through real empowerment, team diversity and interactive visual engagement and constant feedback loops. Easy to read, well-structured and frequently used for reference. Highly recommended for anyone involved in delivering change, especially for those who wonder why innovation does not happen.

    Mark Simons
    Mark Simons Global Cloud Programme Director, Aviva PLC
  • I really enjoyed reading the ideas from Fin and Haydn, ideas that have been tried and tested. I love the Executive Wall, and the other walls that radiate information from concept through to customer value realisation. I love the focus on customer feedback via the Customer Feedback Wall. Fin and Haydn observed correctly that the incorrect application of Scrum is commonplace, and I also believe from my experience that flow is the tip of the spear, reducing the number of products, initiatives, backlog items in progress, as long as we talk to external customers to collect feedback the way Fin and Haydn say we must. A must read for executives, and leaders at all levels

    John Coleman Agile Strategist

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