Agile control system

How can employees at all levels be empowered to make strategically meaningful decisions (in an agile manner)?

The world is becoming increasingly uncertain and volatile - this is not just a subjective feeling, but is also reflected in data such as the World Uncertainty Index (see figure). The familiar top-down way of planning and decision-making is no longer effective today. To cope with the increasing speed and complexity, decisions in the enterprise need to be made in an agile way. Today, more and more companies already rely on agile processes and projects. But that is not enough: in order to be able to act in a truly agile manner, agile management must also be in place for the strategic and operational decisions of the company.

Image title: World Uncertainty Index


Agile control system for continuous, rapid adaptation to market changes

Approaches for agile processes and projects at the operational level are now known at most companies and are often already established or being introduced. However, many organizations find it difficult to align organizational controlling in an agile manner. Classic controlling and management approaches have difficulty mapping the need for continuous adaptation because they are focused on efficient planning and implementation. New, more agile methods such as OKR (Objectives and Key Results) supposedly provide a remedy here, but in turn bring a new high level of complexity into the company. As a result, decisions continue to be made incoherently at various levels, or not at all - so that although agile and efficient work is done operationally, overall effectiveness falls by the wayside. 

The solution is an agile management system that counters complexity with the greatest possible simplicity and can be used stringently "from the CEO to the intern". By means of a clear procedure, easy-to-use methods and tools, and transparent alignment with measurable corporate goals, decisions can always be made as close as possible to the information, and yet coherently in the interests of the company as a whole.

Introduction of an agile management system

In many years of academic research and applied practice venture.idea was able to develop and apply a novel agile control system. On the one hand, it fulfills the requirements of established companies and, on the other hand, meets the immense complexity with maximum simplicity.


Image title: Agile Management System
Source: Rückert, Sauberschwarz & Weiss, Strategy Needs Agility, ISPIM Proceedings 2021

At the heart of this is a strategic KPI framework with which the portfolio of projects and initiatives can be collected, evaluated and analyzed holistically and individually in each business unit. With the help of a designated process and suitable methods, this is continuously reviewed and adjusted in regular review workshops. In this way, "gaps" for the achievement of objectives can be identified at an early stage and/or agile decisions can be made to focus and continuously prioritize resources and budgets.

At the same time, the agile control system is also used for the structured recording and evaluation of new business and optimization opportunities, for example from agile strategy work or strategic innovation management. Since the agile control system can be used flexibly at the management level, central functions, or the entire company, it can be used to establish the necessary speed and adaptability at the strategic and operational level in the company as required.

"Thanks to the agile portfolio strategy, we always remain capable of acting even in an increasingly fast-paced and complex environment"
Timo Emmert, Commercial Director / Authorized Representative E-Commerce, MediaMarktSaturn
If you have any questions or want to learn more about this topic, feel free to let us exchange directly:

Lucas Sauberschwarz

Managing Partner
Expert in the field
Expert in the fields
Agile control system
More on the topic
Matching cases