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How will I know if the Agile coach role is a good fit for me?

The best way to find out is to do the work. Be an Agile coach.

An Agile coach is often a thankless job. If something goes wrong, it’s the Agile coach that gets called out for it. When things go well, it’s the team who are recognised for their success.

You need to have thick skin and take joy in the achievements of others as part of your own definition of success.

Working with teams is incredibly rewarding and often the individuals in the team will provide you with all the validation and gratitude you need, but it is very seldom that you will receive validation and recognition outside of those circles.

Does that mean that you need to be a monk in order to enjoy the role?

No, it just means that you need to be aware that the team’s success is your success and derive your sense of reward and identity from an internal locus of control rather than exterior validation.

An Agile coach has a significant impact on individuals as well as teams. It’s your job to help them create an environment where the team thrives. It’s your job to have the tough conversations with people to help ensure that there is continuous improvement.

Sometimes those tough conversations are the key to unlocking better individual and team performances, but they aren’t always pleasant. So, you need to have a strong backbone and be committed to Agile values and principles.

The 4 values and 12 principles of Agile need to be embedded in your DNA. As a scrum master or Agile practitioner, you would already have lived and breathed these values as part of your day-to-day working experience but as an Agile coach, you now lead those values and principles.

If you enjoy working with people and overcoming obstacles, you will love the Agile coach role. If you enjoy taking on complex problems and solving them in collaboration with others, you will love the Agile coach role.

If you enjoy building valuable products and services, actively creating new things that have never existed before, you will love the Agile coaching role.

An agile coach is a natural evolution for Scrum Masters and does include a lot of the coaching and mentoring that you would already be doing as a Scrum Master so it shouldn’t be too much of a leap from the Scrum Master role into the Agile coaching role.

You may simply just be working with more people within the organisation than you did when working as a Scrum Master but the skill set is the same.

Most Scrum Masters adopt a servant leadership approach to their work and an Agile coaching role is no different. You may be playing a greater leadership role but it is still servant leadership at heart and you will simply develop your leadership and coaching skills within that framework.

If you are interested in becoming an Agile coach, visit our Advanced Certified Scrum Master and Certified Scrum Professional Scrum Master course pages. Also, see our Agile Coaching Academy and IC Agile Certified Agile Team Coaching course pages.

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