Agile Notes (No. 32)
Hey, all! Sorry I am a little late this week. Yesterday it was our Thanksgiving here in the U.S. Lots a good food and laughs with our family. I had a slow morning today.
We are continuing our re-read of the EXCELLENT Coaching Agile Teams by Lyssa Adkins. This week Chapter 4: Let Your Style Change.
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This chapter uses the martial arts concept of Shu Ha Ri to show how to evolve your own coaching styles and to use those different styles to meet your team where they are in their Agile practice. Shu means Follow the Rule; Ha means Break the Rule; and Ri means Be the Rule.
There are two sections that really jumped out at me. First on page 61, Adkins talks about the “deeper principle” of the daily stand-up being a COMMITMENT meeting versus a status meeting. It is SO easy to get stuck in that mode of: answer the 3 questions as quickly as possible and move on. Imagine if at the Stand-Up everyone prefaced their update with: Yesterday, I COMMITTED to x and delivered. Today, I COMMIT to y. That is an EXCELLENT way to shift a team’s mindset.
The other section that smacked me in the head was on page 68 where Adkins suggests ways to figure out where in Shu Ha Ri your team is living. She asks a question that rang very true for me.
Have they broken through the walls of dysfunction in their company so that their practice of agile leads to progressively better and faster delivery and higher satisfaction?
Walls of dysfunction….
In my recent past, I was a Scrum Master for teams where the walls of dysfunction were so thick they could not be broken. Instead, like Bruce Lee’s philosophy of “be like water,” they worked around the walls. They delivered. Consistently. Even while the company around them did its very best to thwart them.
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