In case you are still on the fence about attending my Scrum Product Owner training course in Seattle, I’ve put together the top 10 reasons you should attend. Read if you appreciate sarcasm and humor.
I frequently hear about people wanting to modify Scrum. This usually comes up because the transparency is painful, charge is hard, and being stuck by assumptions or limiting beliefs.
Before you modify Scrum, be sure to ask yourself the 4 questions in this post. They will likely lead you to discovering how to be more effective with Scrum.
I recently heard the term “emotional agility” on a meditation app, and it really resonated. So I wanted to riff on this concept from the agile coaching perspective.
Emotional agility is our ability recognize and be with our emotions and other people’s emotions, and tap into emotions to enable continuous improvement.
We get into trouble when we try to deny or push away our emotions. We get into trouble when we cannot be with our emotions.
The bigger and more authentically we live our lives, the wider our emotional experience will be.
Emotions are part of the human experience. When our emotions are flowing freely, they can bring us energy and provide the fuel for us to transform and grow.
Emotions are information. When our emotions are flowing freely, we have access to more information that we can use to help guide our decisions and our behaviors.
We have been taught by corporate culture to talk more. We have to talk more to justify or explain our opinions and decisions. We have to talk more to be heard among the many voices. The more words we say, the smarter we must be and the more impact we will have.
But once I dove deeper into the profession of coaching and leadership, I realized that these beliefs are not true.
People get lost in our words, and our words have less impact.
People go to the logical part of their brain to interpret and analyze our words. This often breaks the connection to the creative, feeling, intuitive part of their brain.
This reduces the power of coaching.
Read more to learn how to avoid this mistake by dropping the context.
In coaching conversations, people often bring up challenges or issues they have with co-workers.
We can empathize. We have likely experienced a similar challenge.
So we start talking about the other person.
We talk about what the other person might be thinking. We try explore the other person’s experience and motivations.
We start talking about what the other person could/ should do differently. We may even get sucked into colluding with the person we are coaching.
We start to over-identify with the person we are coaching and take on their view of the world and the situation.
But none of this serves the person we are coaching right now in front of us.
Read more to discover why you cannot someone not in the room and how to get back on track.
We worry if we are asking the right question. We worry about saying the right thing. We overthink it.
We get stuck in our head. And now we are not actively listening.
We are not picking up on the tone of voice, the hesitation, the body language, the energy. We lost that connection with the person we are coaching.
The secret is to follow the aliveness. And the aliveness is in the emotion.
Emotion is simply energy in motion. And emotion is part of being human.
When our emotions are flowing freely, they bring us energy and provide the fuel for us to grow and make lasting changes in our lives. Read more to find out how we can help others explore emotion to learn, gain insights, and take intentional action.
We all think we are actively listening and asking powerful questions. But we are not as good as we think we are. We may start in a space of active listening where we have a direct connection with the person. We may start from a place of curiosity where we are asking open-ended questions to deepen the learning of the person. But it’s so easy to start analyzing, to start thinking of possible solutions, to start judging.
We are not bad people. We don’t suck at what we do. We are simply trying to help, but we are not serving the other person’s highest needs. Read more about how to tap into your curiosity by… pretending you are an alien.
We all want to help. Unfortunately, acting on the desire to help is usually where many Scrum Masters, Coaches, and Managers can make a mistake (including myself). When we see people struggling, we want to help them. We want them to feel better. We want to help solve their problem. We want to remove stress or suffering.
Because we are human.
We have good intentions, however, we may actually hurt more than we help if our goal is to best serve the person’s or the team’s needs. Read more about how this desire to help leads to unintended consequences and how to change our habits.
We talk about coaching a lot in the agile world. However, what we are actually expected to do is not usually about coaching. So we do other things.
We teach. We facilitate. We advise. None of those things are bad. Often, those things are necessary and can be good. But those things are not coaching. In this post, I want to clarify what coaching is and why I think it is so powerful. I hope to inspire you to perhaps put on your coaching hat a little more frequently.
Scrum is often referred to as the art of the possible. I love this phrase. In this post, I take the concept further to explore Scrum and luck. Because as scientific studies suggest, luck is about being open to possibilities. Read more and see how you can be more lucky.
The Scrum Guide talks about coaching as a part of the Scrum Master role. The Scrum Master coaches the Scrum Team in fulfilling their roles and effective use of the Scrum framework. The Scrum Master coaches the organization in its Scrum adoption. First, let’s define what coaching is. You can find many definitions, and […]
How do you have more impact on the individuals and teams you work with? When I transitioned my career path from Project Manager to Scrum Master, I was both excited and terrified. This is a feeling many people experience when they are embarking on something new. In order to amplify my impact, I had to expand my range. Scrum Masters, Coaches, and anyone who considers themselves an agile leader should seek to expand their range as part of their own continuous improvement. This is part of servant leadership. In this post, I’ll share 4 steps to expand your range.
As human beings, we each have values. Values matter in all aspects of our lives, including how we interact in teams. Read these 3 reasons values matter and get tips for applying this in your own life and in your teams.
The Business Agility 2017 conference was quite different from most agile conferences I have attended. The focus was on business agility rather than technology and agile teams. The format included short talks and facilitated workshops to drive action for participants. It was amazing. In this post, I capture 5 key learnings about business agility from a wonderfully diverse group of speakers.
Are you a driven and successful person who loves to learn, seeks out joy, and wants to make an impact? Do you experience the challenge of fitting it all in? Are you soooo busy but feel like you never actually get the important things done? You want to know how to get more done so that you have more time and energy for friends and family and activities you enjoy. I call this an integrated life. This is a life of joy, fulfillment, and balance. It is a life you choose, a life you live with intention. Read my 6 steps for designing a life you love.
In my experience, there are six steps in designing a life you love.
Let’s debunk the Scrum myth that Scrum projects are faster and cheaper. This myth misses the point of Scrum. It sets teams up for failure. And it’s sort of impossible to prove.
Servant leadership is a crucial and often misunderstood concept in agile and Scrum. Many people think it simply means to help others solve problems. And it is often assumed a servant-leader is touchy feely. But it’s much bigger and more complex than that. This is my take on who the servant-leader is.
Let’s debunk the Scrum myth that there is no planning in Scrum. In reality, there is a lot of planning in Scrum if done well. We just plan differently to optimize effectiveness. Learn more about how we plan using Scrum and identify ways to help your team effectively plan.
Most of us know what we are against. What frustrates us. What makes us feel wronged. What upsets us. What is making things difficult for us. That’s easy to know. I think the better question is do you know what you are for? Sometimes Scrum Masters and Agile Coaches point at everything that is wrong, […]
What might be possible if you apply agile values, principles, and practices to your life? I’m talking deeper and broader than a personal kanban board. Agility is about dealing with complexity and unpredictability. What is more complex and unpredictable than life? Agility is about having a product vision and maximizing the value of the product. How would you define value if your life is the product? I introduce a framework for what I call An Integrated Life.