Even coaches have Aha! moments. And that moment can be a joyous one. It happened to me recently, and I felt a great desire to share it with the community.
I am known as a coach who enables JIT training; I also believe in group learning, because we are inherently intelligent and we absorb learning when it is felt and not just intellectualized; I have realized the amazing potential of pervasiveness, and when harnessed correctly, transformation is a joy to watch.
Here is a conversation with a team member:
Me: Hi, You are new to the team. We started off with a one-on-one Scrum framework recently, since you wanted to get that curiosity satisfied. I am sure you have more questions. What would you like me to help you with right now? And in the process we can also discover what we must do.
Her: I think I understand a little bit. I also noticed that some ceremonies that you spoke about do not occur until next week. And I am not in a rush to know more about them. I am used to work being given to me, but now I have to generate it side by side with the business. That should be okay, because when you mentioned that we work on one small bit at a time – it caught my attention, and I am looking forward to it. So that doesn’t bother me. In fact it is a relief, because beginning next week I am here, with all of you. Doing just this piece of work. I am also going to learn a new technology. I am also going to be mentoring others about what I know. This is exactly how I like to work. I am happy to get rid of a lot of “stuff” that we did in waterfall. I have thought about the idea of thin slicing all week. Then I remembered that in earlier projects, many years ago.. we pushed to production every 2 to 3 weeks.
(She continued providing more feedback for a while longer; Weighing in on the pros and cons; Thinking about all the adjustments she has to make. She looked around the new work space. It was open and inviting. Many passers-by were curious. She must have made a mental note of how to scale down her personal belongings from her previous cubicle to this new Agile open area; and many other adjustments she might have to make soon)
She sighed and said, “This is not that bad”. And smiled, and said “This is not bad at all” and continued:
You see, “Agile and Scrum” – They are new to me. But change is not.
I bring with me decades of professional expertise. I have survived layoffs, survived time between jobs. I have punched cards. I self taught coding very early on because no one wanted to code where I worked then! Put me in a place and allow me time to learn; I pick it up. And once I learn, I teach. I mentor. That is what I am.
I looked at her, and replied very lovingly: It is an honor to be coaching professionals like you; working with you side by side. Do we ever have to be concerned that anyone else on this team will have inhibitions about shifting to Scrum? They will just absorb what you are. How you carry yourself. How you be.
I had just met yet another Star Woman in Agile.