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The Agile coach as a connecting factor

When implementing Agile methods, processes are often the first point of attention. Due to that focus, attention to the human side can easily be neglected. That is why our Agile coaching focuses on people. If you are unable to drive people towards a different way of working, you will never reach your goal. That is what a great Agile coach represents.

But what makes a great Agile coach?

A great Agile coach is someone who:

  • Has the skills to set people in motion.
  • Is equipped to deal with and ultimately eliminate resistance.
  • Sees the potential in every individual and knows how to apply it.
  • Understands the culture of the organisation.
  • Knows how to connect mission, vision, and implementation.
  • Helps teams to understand each other’s differences and how to put those differences into action.
  • Builds trust, with people, not processes, as a starting point.


Process knowledge or people skills?

In reality, those in charge of change management are not always the right people. Coaches who cling to ‘the process’ and who, on paper, know everything about Agile methodologies like LEAN and Scrum, are not always able to fuel the needed changes. That is often due to a lack of ‘soft’ people skills.


Coaching is so much more than just following a process, which is exactly how we distinguish ourselves at ABB. In every organisation, you will encounter different types of personalities. The key lies in understanding those differences, showing team members how to complement one another and how to work together towards great results.


The coach as connecting factor

In any successful change management process, an Agile coach will help the team organise itself as much as possible. Simultaneously, he or she can also be the connecting factor between various teams and upper management, with management indicating the desired direction and the teams concerning themselves with the ‘how to’ of it all. That leads to a wonderful win-win for teams and management, with strategy and implementation blending together seamlessly.


The process

In order for teams to gain insight into their cooperative process and their current phase of maturity, ABB has developed a model for Team Dynamics. This model is a combination of the ideas of Lencioni and Tuckman. It is built on the offering of trust, being able to speak freely without fear of being attacked, and the various phases that a team goes through.


It is impossible to foster intensive involvement and well-founded decision making without a foundation of trust. Trust also means that you can follow up with one another about the plans you make together. Conflict and confrontation are, in fact, highly productive, since change is not possible without them. That is the guiding principle to maximise the knowledge and expertise of team members and to encourage them to take ownership, leading to beautiful and innovative results.


The guidance during this process is what makes the difference between a coach and a great coach.


Also looking for change driven by people?

Here at ABB, all our people are experienced in the hard and soft side of change. Let’s chat over coffee!

Phone: +31 20 261 94 91