Coaching – A Journey towards High Performance Teams

Being an Agile coach is an onerous task, as you have to work with the people who are skilled enough to make their own decisions. In this article, we will discuss some of the tips that an Agile coach should apply to infuse a sense of high performance in an Agile team.

Instil A Purpose

The first important task is to make your team aware of the purpose and the goal of the Agile team spirit. An Agile team is made up of cross-functional teams from various departments so they tend to have different work environments, attitudes, aptitudes and orientations. A coach instils a common purpose that appeals to the team members, thereby getting each one of them on the same page before getting into the task of achieving goals.

Mutual respect

Another important factor that affects team performance is a culture of mutual respect. Being a coach you must not give the member an impression that you know each and everything about the team and they know nothing. Instead, create an environment where ideas flow easily and effortlessly without hesitation or reservation.

Introduce system thinking

Yet another highly effective coaching skill is to introduce system thinking practices in the group or the team. Motivate your team to conduct brainstorming sessions and to engage in root cause analysis. Most of the time, conflicts in teams are mostly because of internal pressures and misplaced perceptions. Working in collaboration may ease out work-related differences and thus enhance team performance.

Powerful questions

While coaching the Agile team you have to demonstrate your listening skills to come up with the best possible solutions and ideas. Ask the team questions regarding various situations and their relevant solutions. However, you have to keep in mind that asking too many questions may also put a question on your ability to solve the situation. So, indulge your team in solving the problems, however, do not ask too many questions.

Introduce open environment

Agile coach needs to insulate teams from all kinds of disempowering influences that hinder its performance. Introduce an environment where every team member is allowed to express themselves on things that are causing discomfort and unrest. If the team feels that you are aware of their problems, they will be more willing to share their views and opinions with the coach, leading to mutual admiration and empathy.

Use Team Momentum

While working with teams, you have to distinguish between leading and controlling. A good leader always encourages teams to ideate and come up with the best possible answer to problems. If you encourage a team to decide on which problem it should on work first, it will instil a sense of responsibility leading to diligence and commitment to the tasks assigned.

Once a coach has trained his team members to work on their problems and to make their own decisions, they get to scale up to becoming scrum masters, thus paving their own chartered course to success and glory.

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