Your Agile team is struggling to achieve the results you were hoping for. You have tried everything, and have finally decided that you need an Agile Coach to give your team some guidance. You see some small changes but you still aren’t convinced that the coach is making a difference.
How can you tell if your investment in the coach is paying off?
Here are 3 questions to ask yourself and your team to help you decide if you are on the path to success.
Question #1 – Is the coach solving problems for the team?
An effective Agile Coach should offer advice and guidance, and teach the team to become better problem-solvers for themselves. He/she should not solve problems directly, or provide immediate answers to every question. If you expect the team to learn from the coach, the team should be given the opportunity to experience with new things and learn from them.
Question #2 – How does the coach measure success?
Is the Agile Coach helping you establish a quantifiable goal before making suggestions for improvement? An effective coach should help you develop a metric-based plan so that you can objectively assess how the team is improving, if at all. Without a way to measure the impact of change, it is very difficult to know whether the coach has provided any value to the team.
Question #3 – Is your team happier than before?
It is often very difficult to tell if your team enjoys what they do, but sometimes it is easy to tell if they are not working well with the coach. If you consistently see disagreements or friction between the team and the coach, it is very possible that the chemistry is not there, and things aren’t going well; this should not be seen as any individual’s fault, since sometimes people just aren’t able to work together effectively no matter how hard they want it to work.
Agile Coaches are costly resources to acquire, which means it is important to make sure they are providing your team the benefit that you expect. If things aren’t working as you like, have a candid conversation with your coach and try to build a plan of attack together.