People & Culture

Growing a Global Business, Building Agile Teams and Leadership

Stride CEO Debbie Madden talks with Ken Judy on building and leading teams and growing business.

Debbie Madden, CEO of Stride, Interviews Ken Judy for November's Stride Tech Talk


Debbie: You've built a close-knit, small, high functioning Agile team inside a global business with a Fortune 500 parent company. What do you think contributed to this success?

Ken: Patience, humility and familiarity with the pattern. It takes years to build an Agile engineering practice, at some point all your profound challenges arise outside the team (not how you build but what and for whom and by what measure of success), you are constantly working to earn trust because you are constantly re-investing your credibility to participate in different or higher profile challenges, and you never quite reach a place of high performance before you find yourself rebuilding.


Debbie: I know you're a big believer in servant-leadership. What does it mean to you to be a great servant-leader?

Ken: Sharing the interesting problems with the team while removing as many of the more mundane problems as you can and still perform your role. Earning trust, behaving with integrity worthy of that trust. Acting from the belief that fostering and defending a collaborative, empowered team of people is an ethical imperative not a means to an end.


Debbie: What keeps you up at night?

Ken: Achieving something of value to people. Sustaining a career. Basically, living up to my own expectations for myself.