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All Posts by Andre Badenhorst

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About the Author

André was a member of the Xuviate team until June 2019. He has more than 20 years of experience in Information Technology with a primary focus on designing and developing software solutions on all application tiers. Also, he has a solid theoretical background in curriculum studies and a thinker on the topic of new education.

May 13

Making IT the Dynamo of Business Innovation – A Summary

By Andre Badenhorst | Digital Transformation

"My company does not regard IT as a business partner."

This is a statement usually coming from IT Leaders and it clearly illustrates the dilemma in which the IT function finds itself in.

There is, however, a bunch of IT Leaders who have managed to address this fault line. Not only do they manage to turn their IT department around, but also their business. And boy, do they reach success!

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Apr 23

82. Transform IT Into a Strategic Business Partner

By Andre Badenhorst |

82. Transform IT Into a Strategic Business Partner

Starring: Jason Sichkaryk (IT Director at Rosanau Transport)
Episode Type: Lean Coffee

Abstract:

Every company needs to invest in its digital leadership to thrive during the uncertain times that lie ahead. Especially in mid-market companies, there is one role that is perfectly positioned to bridge the gap between technology and business - the IT Leader. And in the past year or two, one tool has emerged as the proverbial "swiss army knife for the IT Leader" - Kanban.

Xuviate together with Kanbanize hosted a series of four Lean Coffee style webinars on Kanban-related topics and for this third episode our topic was "How to Transform IT Into a Strategic Business Partner" and we were privileged to host Jason Sichkaryk, IT Director at Rosenau Transport Ltd in Edmonton, Canada. Jason over the past few years has had an exhilarating journey from technical resource to strategic IT Leader and in this session answered questions of the audience and shared many tips, tricks, insights and also several dead-ends he came across.

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Apr 16

81. Using Technology to Address a Business Challenge

By Andre Badenhorst |

81. Using Technology to Address a Business Challenge

Starring: Ray Leslie (Group IT Manager at Weylandts)
Episode Type: Case Study

Abstract:

Do you know the scenario? You design a technology solution and roll it out to business. It takes ages to plan and implement. You have to push users to adopt the new technology and in the end, the business outcome is a far cry from what you and the business had hoped it to be.

It does not need to be that way. In this episode, Ray shares how he managed to flip the implementation process of a recent project. The result is a dream come true. Empowered by technology, users are now the drivers of the technology solution. Adoption went viral across the business departments and sales are skyrocketing.

Was he lucky? Well, to quote famous golfer Gary Player: “The more I practice, the luckier I get.”

In their discussion, Ray and Mathias do identify some of the building blocks that were and still are necessary and how deliberate actions built the environment that enabled this success.

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Apr 09

80. Sell Yourself – The Importance for Any IT Leader to Be Able to Sell Themselves inside the Organisation

By Andre Badenhorst |

80. Sell Yourself - The Importance for Any IT Leader to Be Able to Sell Themselves inside the Organisation

Starring: Bettina Horvath (Trainer/Consultant at Protea Training)
Episode Type: Expert

Abstract:

Bettina helps us to understand that selling is a human trait and not something to be afraid of or negative about. There are a few basic rules to become better at selling our ideas to others. With many IT Leaders being introverts, Bettina shows that this might actually be an advantage and gives many helpful hints and one special trick!

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Apr 01

79. Kanban for Personal Productivity

By Andre Badenhorst |

79. Kanban for Personal Productivity

Starring: Dimitar Karaivanov  (CEO of Kanbanize)
Episode Type: Lean Coffee

Abstract:

Almost every IT Leader we speak to is snowed under. Projects are piling up and there are never enough hours in a day (and this often already includes loads of overtime). Work/Life Balance - what is that? And then there is the topic of personal and professional development - where does that fit into an already impossible schedule?

Xuviate together with Kanbanize is hosting a series of four Lean Coffee style webinars on Kanban-related topics.

For this second episode, Dimitar Karaivanov, CEO of Kanbanize, answers the following (and many more) questions:

  • Is Kanban applicable for personal use?
  • How does Personal Kanban differ from methodologies like "Getting Things Done", Inbox Zero and the multitude of other productivity tools on the market?
  • How would I best get started with Personal Kanban?
  • I am using Personal Kanban. Can you provide some tips and tricks that in your experience make a big difference?
  • Are there any books & tools you could recommend?

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Mar 19

78. Kanban for IT Leaders in Mid-Sized Businesses

By Andre Badenhorst |

78. Kanban for IT Leaders in Mid-Sized Businesses

Starring: Dimitar Karaivanov  (CEO of Kanbanize)
Episode Type: Lean Coffee

Abstract:

Are there any cases where Kanban can't be applied?
What is the biggest advantage of Kanban for IT teams?
How do we get business owners involved in Kanban processes?
How do you determine WIP limits to ensure effective flow?
What is the best - physical or digital boards?

In this first session out of four, Dimitar answers these and more questions from the webinar participants.

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Mar 06

77. Governance Is Your Friend

By Andre Badenhorst |

77. Governance Is Your Friend

Starring: Paul Galland  (Director and Value Creator at Flipside Enterprise Services)
Episode Type: Expert

Abstract:

Governance is often seen as a bad thing and a big hurdle, especially if you are working in a mid-market organisation.

In this episode Paul provides some insight from his many years of experience on this topic. He especially goes quite into detail on the difference between soft and hard governance and how every organisation does have a huge amount of soft governance in place, whether you realise it or not.

He does also warn against throwing out the baby with the bath water when the need for some more hard governance has come.

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Feb 26

76. The Value Divide – Aligning Technology to Business Needs

By Andre Badenhorst |

76. The Value Divide – Aligning Technology to Business Needs

Starring: Craig Armour  (Principal, K C Armour & Co)
Episode Type: Expert

Abstract:

IT Leaders are more and more often expected to create IT Strategies that add real business value. But how does one define business value? And how is it determined in our organisation? In this session Craig and Mathias first discuss several theoretical models, but quickly dive deeper and look at concrete steps that IT and other leaders can take to determine the needs of their own organisation and how to go about implementing them.

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Feb 22

75. Business Agility Does NOT Equal Agile Software Delivery on Steroids

By Andre Badenhorst |

75. “Business Agility” Does NOT Equal Agile Software Delivery on Steroids

Starring: John Dobbin (Co-founder of Infagility)
Episode Type: Expert

Abstract:

‘Agility’ has become a buzzword. Based on the success witnessed in digital teams, many companies are now striving to make their entire organisations ‘agile’. Every major management consultancy is pushing it. McKinsey call it the “new dominant organisational paradigm”.

Although the term Agile gained traction through its ascension in the software industry, the Business Agility body of knowledge stems mostly from lean thinking and complexity theory. While there is a notable overlap, practices such as “scrum” that software developers use do not necessarily transfer to other domains. Organisations that attempt to simply graft practices that evolved in the software domain onto another will be unlikely to achieve business agility.

At the core of agile thinking is cluster of interrelated topics that together represent an ‘agile mindset’. A newcomer to agile thinking can gain considerable advantage by learning the core concepts that underpin agile practices. These include: agile’s genesis, the concept of adaption, a growth mindset, a practical understanding of complexity, lean thinking, thin-sliced experimentation, design thinking, and agile leadership and change.

Individuals, teams and organisations that want to survive and thrive in the dynamic business landscape of today will greatly benefit from properly understanding what business agility is really about.

IT Managers, CTOs’, CIO’s in particular must understand the differences between agile software delivery and agile business if they are to successfully influence positive change.

In this episode we will be discussing the core concepts that underpin business agility and why nothing less than a paradigm shift is needed to break the shackles of 100 years of industrial-era management thinking.

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Feb 06

74. A New Breed of IT Manager – Embracing Change

By Andre Badenhorst |

74. A New Breed of IT Manager - Embracing Change

Starring: Debbie Baird (Group IT manager at Briggs Marine & Environmental Services)
Episode Type: Case Study

Abstract:

Debbie has had quite a different career journey than probably a majority of IT Managers, but this has put her into a position to maybe look at the role a bit more objectively and help her identify what is needed today and into the future and how this role can be a major change agent in many organisations. 

IT Managers have grown up with constant change, but we often do not realise how this resilience can be of major benefit to help our organisations survive and thrive in these uncertain times.

And you don't have to directly tackle major company-wide projects. Rather start with your peers - the heads of other business teams - and make them excited about the possibilities that technology can bring to their departments.

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