Very little in our education or experience properly prepares a ScrumMaster or project manager for the role of agile coach. This leaves most wondering, "What is my role in a self-organized team? How do I help the team yet stay hands-off?" This chapter, excerpted from the book Coaching Agile Teams, shows you how to activate the journey toward high performance in both provocative and practical ways.
Self-managed teams are unstable and are successful when the ‘Leadership – Self-Management’ dilemma is understood and dealt with. Too much central control destroys agility, inhibits creativity and resists change. Too much self-management leads to chaos and anarchy and destroys a team. A successful Agile Team operates as far along self-management as it can, without tipping over into chaos.
One of the responsibilities of self-organizing teams is to take decisions that respect everyone’s opinion. This book has some great examples in coaching the team to navigate through difficult discussions so they can maintain their speed without endangering their success by suspending or ignoring critical issues.
Feature teams are key to scaling agility for large teams. In an excerpt from "Scaling Lean and Agile Development," Larman & Vodde show how feature teams resolve traditional problems & raise new issues 2
The "self organising team" paradigm demands new skills of team members – people skills they may not already possess. Here are some strategies and resources leaders can use to impart these skills. 2
Why do Agile teams get stuck in the just-average "norming" stage, never making it to the exciting high "performing" stage of team growth? The invisible "learning bottleneck" can stunt performance. 16