Agile Coaching Talks

Downfalls of Coaching in a Hierarchical Model

Gaining alignment on the goals and desired results of agile can influence the structure of a coaching group. When the coaching group structure begins to mimic the structure of the organization it is working to change, trust can decrease across the organization and visibility is reduced between the products’ outcomes and how things are implemented within teams. This report describes the issues of a siloed or hierarchical coaching model and how we shifted to a more product-based coaching approach.

This experience report and presentation were co-developed with Skylar Watson. It has been presented at:

  • Dallas Agile Leadership Network

  • Agile 2019

Beyond Removing Impediments: Scrum Master as Team Coach

The role of the Scrum Master is about more than removing impediments and facilitating meetings. Scrum Masters act as mirrors for their teams and mentor team members great Scrum Masters coach their teams to high performance every day. We will share a metaphor for teams to use on their journey to high performance and teach Scrum Masters how to be coaches for their teams. Come learn how to give meaningful feedback and ask powerful questions to grow a team.

This workshop was co-developed with Cherie Silas. It has been presented at:

  • DevUp St. Louis

  • Tulsa TechFest

  • Agile Arizona

  • Dallas TechFest

  • Houston TechFest

  • AgileDotNext in Houston

  • 8th Annual UTDallas Project Management Symposium

  • Scrum Gathering in New Orleans

  • Keep Austin Agile

  • DFW PMI Agile Community of Practice

Change Your Questions, Change Your World

At a critical moment in history the world pivoted because people began to look at things from a different perspective. They stopped asking themselves, “How do we make our product large enough for people to see?” and started asking themselves, “How can I make my product more visible to the public?”

When we change our questions we get entirely different outcomes. Questions are powerful tools in the hands of agile teams that can help people discover innovative solutions that have been locked inside waiting to be released into our products!

Join us for a high-energy workshop that teaches how questions can be used to help a team learn, grow, and break through thought barriers. Learn what makes certain questions provoke more thought than others and how to make your questions more impactful.

Participants in this session will discover how to change the way they currently communicate to incorporate powerful questions that will unlock new thinking patterns in their teams. They will also interactively learn how to identify if the way questions are being asked are actually impacting others in the manner intended.

This talk was co-developed with Cherie Silas. It has been presented at:

  • Agile 2015

  • 9th Annual UTDallas Project Management Symposium

  • Keep Austin Agile

  • PMI Tulsa Professional Development Conference

  • Houston TechFest

Power Coaching - Pushing the Boundaries to Build Better Teams

Coaching agile teams is all about asking questions and allowing them to self organize, right? Well, that's just part of the mission. During this session we will introduce participants to some anti-patterns that have arisen in the scrum master and agile coaching communities and discuss ways to break free!

Sometimes teams need more than just questions. They need scrum masters and coaches who are courageous enough to have the hard conversations, challenge their decisions, push them to the next level. However, sometimes we push our teams a bit too hard and create negative conflict. It's times like this when we need to demonstrate how to reach out and make the first move to repair the relationship. We will introduce the concept of repair bids to help in this area.

Lastly, we learn a model to put into practice to create a coaching alliance with teams so you can be in agreement on how you will work together for their best interest and improvement over a period of time.

This talk was co-developed with Cherie Silas. It has been presented at:

  • AgileCamp Dallas

  • Agile 2018

  • Keep Austin Agile

Talking and Not Talking — Finding Balance as a Coach

›Ever find yourself struggling to know when to say something and when to stay quiet with your teams? Self-organizing teams might not learn to solve their own problems if we continually step in as a coaches. Conversely, what value are we adding if we primarily observe? This session will explore both ends of the talking spectrum so Scrum Masters and Agile Coaches can feel more confident in their actions.

This talk has been presented at:

  • Agile Midwest

  • Regional Scrum Gathering Canada

  • Agile & Beyond