This week we began our re-read of Coaching Agile Teams by Lyssa Adkins (SPaMCAST Amazon affiliate line buy a copy).  The entire title is Coaching Agile Teams; A Companion for ScrumMasters, Agile Coaches, and Project Managers in Transition published by Addison-Wesley Signature Series copyright 2010. I am re-reading my Kindle version of the book. The front matter includes Forwards by Mike Cohn, Jim Highsmith, Acknowledgments, Introduction, and a section titled, About the Author. The main body of the book is in three parts comprised of 13 chapters. It is indexed — useful for reference books! I estimate 16 or 17 weeks to complete the re-read depending on my travel. Note: The Kindle edition of the book has not been updated and will not run on the Paperwhite Version 10 models, so we will re-read it on the iPhone and Laptop — I did not have a happy chat with Kindle support on this issue.  Wake up, Addison-Wesley!

I am very happy this book was chosen for a re-read, I got a ton out of this book during my first read. This is a book everyone in the agile community should read before they call themselves  . . . anything agile. This book is chock full of techniques that you need to try. As Mike Cohn points out in his Foreword, “Lyssa breaks down the magic of coaching into concrete terms.” My approach to the re-read will be a chapter at a time with usage challenges each week for the “reader” and myself. I will resist the urge to parrot the author’s Things to Try that appear in each chapter.  Similar to the approach taken for Monotasking I will report back my successes and failures each week. 

The introduction is the highlight of the front matter. The most important topic that the author surfaces in the Introduction is the need “constantly improve.” I see far too many coaches, Scrum Masters, and others in the agile space that have fallen prey to the ‘certification and done’ syndrome. Learning stops and barriers are erected that reduce the value that they bring to those around them. I recently asked a group what one new idea or technique they brought to their team in the past few weeks — it was an icebreaker. I will never do that icebreaker again. 

Next week we will cover Part 1, Chapter 1: Will I Be A Good Coach.  

Remember to buy a copy of Coaching Agile Teams by Lyssa Adkins and read along.

If you are still catching up on the re-read of Why Limit WIP are are all of the links”:

Week 1: Preface, Foreword, Introduction, and Logistics

Week 2: Processing and Memory 

Week 3: Completion

Week 4: Multitasking 

Week 5: Context Switching 

Week 6: Creating An Economy – 

Week 7: Healthy Constraints – 

Week 8: Focus 

Week 9: Awareness 

Week 10: Communication 

Week 11: Learning 

Week 12: Epilogue and Final Notes