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Why you may need an 'agile coach' (whatever one is)

Matthew Heusser | Oct. 16, 2013
Ask an 'agile coach' what he or she does and the answer could range from write code to run meetings. It's not what you'd necessarily expect an agile coach to be doing, but that doesn't mean the role is unnecessary.

He wasn't wrong; he was subconsciously using the secret sauce of a good coach, which is to know what's needed and how to apply it. He just didn't know how to put into words what he was doing. Mertsch's story, where the initial ask was for planning but wasn't what the client needed, illustrates that well.

So what's next for agile coaching? Spayd points to the self-assessments he receives at the end of every course he's taught for the Agile Coaching Institute: "Every class comes back wanting information on transformation and transformation mastery. People want more skill in that area."

The ACI defines that as the ability to facilitate, catalyze and sometimes lead organizational change, This draws on change management, organizational culture, organizational development, systems thinking and other behavior sciences. To the extent that middle managers are responsible for growing employees, Adkins adds, they are all coaches.

So what does organizational transformation mean, exactly? Perhaps that's something to talk about next time.


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