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The Agile Coaching Competency Framework

Recently we were privileged enough to attend Lyssa Adkins’ course Coaching Agile Teams which local coach Antoinette Coetzee co-facilitated. We usually have to travel far away to attend courses like this, but thanks to Just Plain Agile, Lyssa made the super long trip to the tip of Africa. (And I believe she really liked it 🙂 ).

Three days in row of interactive training is brutal. I had so many ideas by the end I was bursting. Now, almost a month later, I’m very grateful I took notes as I can barely remember anything 🙂

About a year ago I attended Esther and Dons course and learned about the 9 Coaching Roles. On Lyssa’s course we learned about the Agile Coaching Competency Framework (ACCF). The ACCF states a palette of skills for good agile coaching. As opposed to the 9 coaching roles, which are more mindsets of where you might be as a coach.

The Technical Mastery area felt odd to me, as I don’t this you need to be able to master the technical side of things to be an agile coach. This might be down to interpretation of the term “mastery”. Apparently knowing about technical things and being able to point teams in the right direction is enough. EG: Team enquires about unit testing and you can point them to reading on TDD or similar.

Transformational Mastery also bugged me a bit. I read it as complete organisational transformation, and as a coach I prefer not to play in this area with large organisations. However if I interpret it as Change Management regardless of organisation size – then this is something I enjoy.

Here is a description of all the areas:
The general idea is to rate yourself in each area, and then see where you have the most skills and where you would like to improve.

The one area I think is missing is Self. I believe that as an agile coach you should be eating your own dog food and have used the techniques you are teaching others. I also think you should be using the agile principles in your own life and really be living the values, not just talking about them. I did ask where this would fit in the ACCF diagram, and it was thought to fit under Agile/ Lean Practitioner. I guess I can see that. I again interpreted that to be knowledge in the agile / lean space and I see practitioner could be applying this to yourself as well.

Are you familiar with the ACCF? Do you have any areas you think are missing or that you interpret differently?