Agile is a methodology developed for complex technology projects. But today, the Agile method is being used in all kinds of business settings, from startups to enterprises. Project managers frequently use Agile to coordinate dispersed teams for collaboration as it is a framework that lends itself well to collaboration between cross-functional teams.
For the project manager well-versed in Agile, the next step up the career ladder could encompass becoming an Agile coach. The coach role within the Agile methodology is a good way to help companies stay focused on core objectives for a stronger and more successful project roll-out. Here’s the path toward becoming an Agile coach and how this additional training could benefit your organization.
The Agile Coaching Learning Path
The Agile Coaching Institute lays out a clear-cut path toward advanced learning in Agile methodology:
- The first step is to become an Agile Team Facilitator. Depending on the frameworks you use, you can become a certified scrum master, Iteration Manager or Kanban Coach within this discipline. The goal is to learn and practice the skills to unlock creativity and employ higher performance in a collaborative team.
- Step two is the Agile Coach, whose goal is to hone the requirements of the Agile way and removing barriers to full adoption of the methodology. The Agile Coach learns mentoring and teaching as well as professional coaching skills. The goal of the Agile Coach is to cajole, coax and guide teams to maintain the rigor that is Agile.
- The third and highest step is to become an Enterprise Agile Coach that works closely with organizational leadership to train others in how to apply Agile to the entire organization. The Enterprise Agile Coach emphasizes organizational development and change management as part of their goal-setting across a company or a project.
The next step in this learning curve, the Agile Coach process, engages the Agile Team Facilitator in honing a variety of project-specific skills:
- Leadership, advisory, and communication skills
- Project management expertise
- Planning and road mapping
- Troubleshooting and facilitating teams
It’s important to note the Agile Coach does not lead from the sidelines; the position teaches participation in getting things done. Jumping in gives the Agile Coach the chance to exhibit good behaviors under the methodology while actively leading teams.
Some of the typical tasks of the Agile Coach include:
- Identifying gaps in team knowledge and leading teams through training sessions
- Working hands-on to identify and implement short and long-term process improvements
- Mitigating risks to a project and to the team by eliminating impediments
- Actively resolve conflicts between teams and individuals
- Empower a positive and exciting environment toward change management
- Benchmark metrics that help the team monitor their progress
- Fill in as the project manager when needed
To get started on the next step in Agile certification, take the training and actively engage others at Meetups for Scrum or Agile.
Becoming an Agile Coach could open the door to some exciting new job opportunities and employers find real value in Agile certification at all levels. Talk to the Blackstone Talent Group team about how we can put your unique skills to work on the job.