Coaching is about providing the support for individuals to identify, develop and grow their abilities. It’s a key part of successful management no matter what your software development methodology, and is particularly at the heart of making agile software development a success.
The best coaching happens over a long period, but every relationship has to start somewhere, and a good time is when you are first thinking about adopting agile or iterative/incremental techniques. Or maybe, as is increasingly common, your software development team has been using agile processes which are now starting to leak out and challenge other parts of the organisation.
You may need a little help starting to think and work as a self-organising team. Or maybe you want to give everyone more authority to act for the good of the company, and want to support your employees as they learn how. Or you may just want regular coaching to ensure everyone in your company keeps getting better at what they do and how they do it.
Team member agile coaching
In an organisation that has fully embraced continual improvement, coaches for most employees can come from within the company. However in transitional periods, including in the early days of a company, there may not be the people available at the right time, and having an outside coach you can rely on and who knows your people can help get you through to the next stage.
Management agile coaching
Much of the best management has, for some time, been understood as support for the rest of the team. This is its main purpose in agile, too, and a lot of management tools that are taught today, such as active listening, are just as relevant in agile organisations.
Executive agile coaching
The most successful agile transformations are supported from the executive leadership of the company, and that means that the executive team needs to understand the ideas behind agile working as much as anyone. The better you know how agile working helps the business, the better you can be a leader in that transformation.