Sunday, 22 April 2018

Agile in four or 4 words

I've been heavily reflecting on last week's post agile in 3 words and I'm not happy enough with it.

So this is a response to that previous thought - to bring in a previous previous thought I captured in this older post Open question how.

I think the shortest summary to what is agile - other than "collaborative lightweight working practices" that means many different abstract things to many different people I've tried it on...and gotten nowhere with, is actually:

"How can I help?"

This one induces in the person asking out loud or silently to themselves the teamworking principles, the proaction, the learning, and more. That lovely "how?" question really opens things up a lot more.

Especially in response to my earlier attempt "Can I help?" - a simple "No" would stop anyone in their tracks. And that "No" is to be expected when people are massively in a state of focus and don't want any interruptions.

The simple introduction of the "How" makes this a question that a team member can get creative with by themselves and come up with more creative suggestions - even innovative practice improvements.

How do you think this is better or worse than the earlier version?

Sunday, 15 April 2018

Agile In Three Or 3 Words

"Can I help?"

For agile in 3 words its as simple as that! The implication is that everyone proacting to help each other all the time with everything from making tea to delivering the most complex system requiring 100's of people interlocking and aligning.

As coach one of the things I look/listen out for when assessing the agile fluency of an organisation is how many times I hear the followup to the typical outcomes noticeable in environments where there is a great deal of proaction - namely:

"Thank you!"

Sunday, 8 April 2018

My favourite coaching tools: Free online Kolb Learning Styles Assessment

As always when dealing with any kind of model that helps us communicate and understand the abstract world of our minds, our existence and relationships with each other, nicely summarised by George EP Box: "all models are wrong, some are useful".

This is a free assessment, and there are several others that you can freely download. I liked this one as it is a "1 stop shop" document that you print out, fill out, score quickly on the reporting sheet, and finally receive additional insights at the end. And anyone can complete this simply and quickly. 

Internet access
Printer and 8 pages
Quiet space
10-15 minutes

Step 1:
Give the link or 8 page print-out to the coachee: Kolb Questionnaire. Again I think the best time to do the assessment is in the morning, before work really starts.

Step 2:
When the assessment is complete, the coachee and you will have the coachee's 4 Kolb styles - Activist, Reflector, Theorist and Pragmatist allocated to very strong preference, strong preference, moderate preference, low preference or very low preference.

You now have material you can use to support the coaching goals and plans where learning is required. You also have the approach you need when explaining concepts to the coachee - a real time saver and much more enjoyable experience for you and the coachee as compared to approaching from the worst angle.

Personally, once I realised what my preferred/natural Kolb learning approach was, I realised how I could learn better and more quickly in the same amount of time.

The future no longer belongs to those who learn the fastest. The future now belongs to those who learn the right things the fastest. Kolb learning styles assessment is just another practical tool to help me and my coachees discover their best learning method, and give us some "Slack" to identify what are the right things. Really useful stuff!

What Is Agile For You What Is Agile For Us

So…what do you want to know? I guess there are 3 readers this agile principles blog post is targeted at: Total newcomer to the whole...