A common belief is that the difference between coaching and managing is simply asking questions rather than giving orders. I used to believe this. Instead of making decisions for my teams and telling them what to do I would ask them questions and get them to derive their own solutions. I thought that meant I was coaching. But the more I got into coaching the more I really wanted to make sure I was doing it right and being effective. So, over the past two years, I have invested in myself and in my craft. I have learned everything I can about professional coaching and gotten mentoring by master coaches.
What I learned through the experience is that coaching is A LOT more than just asking questions. In fact, through this experience, I learned that professional coaching skills (and a ton of techniques and coaching models) can mean the difference between being adequate or being excellent for a scrum master, agile coach, or agile manager.
Now, I’m on a mission and a journey to mentor scrum masters in learning coaching skills and show them how to apply them in real-world scenarios with agile teams. As an agile coach, I have the unique opportunity to develop scrum masters in a way that I have never seen done before and I’m excited and humbled to get this opportunity to invest in the careers of a great group of people.