Ajay, an Agile Professional at one of the ‘big four’ corporations has had a stellar career. For the last 12 years, he has successfully led agile teams for product design and development. His track record speaks volumes about his expertise in Agile Methodologies.
Off late, the deployment of the projects has been slipping away. In a recent Enterprise-wide Agile intervention, the team, though well equipped, could not deliver the required outcomes. Ajay wondered, where has he gone disarray?
Dropped performance, missed targets and stalled projects are a reality in the Agile world. Despite following the Agile process playbook to the letter, what are the agile professionals missing?
ICF Coaching Certification: The Missing Piece for Today’s Agile Professionals
Agile interventions cannot operate from a ‘problem-solving mindset’ alone, they need a deeper coaching mindset to complete the project holistically. The Agile/Lean space is undergoing a tectonic shift. This shift demands adding behavioral coaching in conjunction with the process coaching of Agile.
Why Are Agile Professionals Pursuing ICF Certification?
To win the game, go where the puck is going to be, not where the puck already is…
Do you know that less than 1% of the Agile Coaches are ICF-Certified and the industry needs more!!!
ICF Coaching Certification is fast becoming a CAPSTONE Certification for Agile/Scrum professionals and Technology Leaders/Consultants. The industry is evolving and so are the learning needs of the leaders, teams, and organizations.
Efficient processes + Inspired people = Successful Agile Projects
Adequate focus is given to streamlining the processes, tools, and frameworks through Agile Methodologies. But it is the second piece of the equation that is the real game-changer. ICF certification aims to bring back the focus on ‘context’ rather than the hard-hitting ‘content’ alone.
ICF Coach Training certification is not just another addition to the list of certifications, it is quickly becoming a sought-after credential in the technology industry, agile/scrum, and project management communities across the globe.
Reason 1: Transition from Goals-Centric Coaching to Behavior-Centric Coaching:
As Agile Coaches/Professionals, we definitely would have worked with teams and goals. But Agile professionals are realizing that a mere Target – Centric approach might not work with the millennials, cross-functional teams, and remote work styles (after all, they have different needs and motivations)
ICF-Certified Professional Coaching ensures that Agile Coaches are probing and positively exploring the behaviors of the team members, understanding the deep-seated beliefs from where behaviors emanate. In essence, Agile Coaches are expected to ‘Coach’ their team members instead of just managing them through instruction-based ‘Process-Coaching’.
Coaching co-creates the goals, creates accountability towards the goal, and inspires action (that is non-directive) Coaching attacks the root problem (beliefs – emotions) and not only the symptoms (behaviors)
Reason 2: The shift from Agile Coach to ICF Coaching with Agile:
There is one question, every Agile professional should be asking oneself:
How Can I Differentiate Myself as an Agile Coach?
Organizations are waking up to the fact that knowing nuances of ‘Process Coaching’ might not amplify the results for the teams. True, knowing the Agile methodologies, processes and having a good grip on the tools are important to guide Agile and Product Teams. But ‘Process Coaching’ has become a hygiene factor.
Unless merged with the Behavioral Coaching that helps in the unwrapping of the beliefs, habits, behaviors of the team members, Process Coaching will yield transactional results.
Agile Coaches who are equipped with ‘Coaching Competencies’ of Active Listening, Humble and Appreciative Inquiry, Coaching Presence, Setting Goals, and Evoking Awareness to achieve the desired action will enhance the contribution of Agile Coaches, thereby differentiating them from the crowd.
Reason 3: A surge in Industry Demand for ICF Credentialed Agile Coaches:
Tech Mammoths like Accenture, TCS, Google have invested their Learning and Development in nurturing the ‘Coaching Culture’ and are demanding the ICF-Credentialed Coaches to lead their Enterprise-level Agile interventions.
Especially in Europe and USA, organizations are looking for Coaches who can bring the best of both worlds; the technical expertise of Agile Coaching and the psychological understanding of Coaching team members for behavioural Changes, underpinned by Trust and Empathy.
– Shift from Project Manager to Project ‘Coach’
Progressive Organizations have truly transitioned to leading the projects through Project ‘Coaches’ along with Project Managers. Traditional managers would work on managing the resources (men, material, money and machine) while the Project Coaches take a more ‘holistic’ approach and work on aligning the objectives, challenging and supporting the leaders, team members on their beliefs and co-creates positive solutions for the project challenges.
Reasons 4: ICF Coaching Certification goes beyond ‘Employment’
ICF Coaching Certification has also become an accepted second-career alternative for the established Agile Coaches. ICF Coaching Certification is a certification of ‘Purpose.’ Coaching, we believe is a true calling. Agile Coaches are investing in this certification to make a bigger impact that goes beyond coaching Agile teammates. Coaching as a second career is a career of fulfilment and satisfaction.
Agile Coaching ends with our stint as an Agile Professional, but the ICF-Certified Coaching credential opens up a host of new avenues to continually coach and co-learn individuals, teams, leaders of choice, even beyond the formal terms of employment. Agile Coaches are already looking to enhance their impact, presence and economic value through ICF-Certification.
ICF-Certifications welcomes these leaders to explore coaching in various niche areas, like business coaching, relationship coaching, executive coaching, life coaching, etc. depending on their interest and expertise. It truly increases the ‘working-life’ of a professional.
Reason 5: Professional Growth + Personal Excellence = Fulfillment
The journey of ICF Credential involves a lot of unlearning. The certification challenges all learner Coaches, and to quote the words of a successful Agile Coach; “ICF Credentialing journey involves a lot of self-churning. In the peer-coaching sessions, lots of behavioral inefficiencies (gaps) surface, lots of biases spring up, lots of blind spots start to become visible…” The journey is aimed at personal excellence and based on the mastery of ‘self’
To limit ICF Credential journey to mere ‘Certification’ will be a gross understatement. While Agile Coach Certification polishes your Agile Performance and Leadership skills, ICF Certification with Agile holds the mirror to your true potential as a whole person.
Mastering the “Coaching Competencies” has become imperative for Agile Coaches, Scrum Masters, Trainers and technology leaders to galvanize teams, collaborate and inspire the action towards organizational objectives to create the desired impact.
How Can You Become an ICF Certified Coach?
Go where the puck is going to be… And we truly believe that Agile/Scrum is up for disruption, that will bring back the focus on ‘Coaching the team members for high-performance’ instead of just managing the projects to completion
At Regal Unlimited, we are starting an ICF Coach Training & Certification program, exclusively for Agile Leaders, Professionals and Scrum Trainers. A curated program, facilitated by Agile Leaders and Coaches that talk at length about how can Behavioral Coaching be merged with Agile Coaching. Become an ICF Certified Coach now. Write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or contact +91 9451422750
Very helpful and motivating article.