Agile + DevOps East 2020 Keynote : The Business Agility Behind a Virtual Band that Topped Real-World Charts

Conference archive


Thursday, November 12, 2020 - 10:00am to 11:15am

The Business Agility Behind a Virtual Band that Topped Real-World Charts

How did a virtual band top Billboard’s World Digital Song Sales chart? It was a desired yet unexpected result of building a foundation of business agility—not to avoid disruption or adapt to external forces, but to place our players firmly in the center of our universe. Ahmed Sidky and Michael Robillard will explain the business agility practiced by Riot Games, the video game developer behind League of Legends, whose characters make up chart-topping virtual K-pop girl group K/DA. They will discuss the "Copernican Revolution" that informs their mindset, and how they balance the interplay between top-down strategy and bottom-up ideas to delight our players. They will also describe the implementation of key components of business agility, including leadership, individuals, operations, and the core relationships that enable or hinder business agility. You’ll explore why business agility is a journey that relies on learning through experimentation rather than a framework, model, or methodology. Come learn a new mindset for business agility based on the outputs, the outcomes, and the journey of Riot Games.

Riot Games

Ahmed Sidky, Ph.D., is a global thought-leader in Business Agility. He has been at Riot Games for about 5 years where is was the Head of Development Management and is now the the Head of Business Agility. Before Riot, Ahmed was an enterprise agile consultant for a number of Fortune 100 companies, guiding enterprise Agile transformations, educated leaders on the Agile mindset, and creating customer-centric cultures of learning. He is the President of the International Consortium for Agile (ICAgile) and the co-founder of the Business Agility Institute; co-author of “Becoming Agile in an Imperfect World;" and a seasoned international keynote speaker.

Riot Games

Michael Robillard has a career in commercial software and organizational development that spans 30 years in industries including security, retail, healthcare, and entertainment. His focus for the last decade has been leading business & product strategy and operational excellence. He also specializes in creating meaningful communication and co-creation experiences for both small and large groups of individuals, from the C-Suite to delivery teams. He is currently a Lead Development Manager for Riot Games in Los Angeles. Michael is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist trainer, a national-level competitive bodybuilder, and owns a gym in Boulder, CO. When not in the workplace you will find him in the gym, on the ski slopes, or hiking through the mountains of Colorado.