Meet Payam Norouzi-Alam, an agile coach and consultant who travelled from Malmö to attend the International Coaching Certification course in Budapest in the spring 2018. This is Payam’s story – how he ended up on the course and what his insights are a year later. Enjoy!
I had been very interested in attending this coaching course for many years, but there was always this and that. To be honest, really bad excuses! I could see how my coach colleagues clearly changed their coaching style after attending the course in a really positive way. Sadly, it was not my time.
It was when I changed workplace that I got challenged and given the opportunity to attend the course in Budapest! Yeah, finally it was my time, it felt really good and so my journey finally began. I really recommend the course if you are wondering if coaching could be your thing or if you are eager to get down to business and start practicing as soon as possible.
My background is within Software development as a developer, which turned into a part time Scrum Master / Project Manager role, and then I became a full-time Agile Coach. I have 15+ years of Agile Software Development and Coaching experience! Before I attended the course I coached something like 20 teams. Now that I have my certification I’m totally sure that my future teams will definitely have a better Coach.
So, you might wonder how the coaching course helped me further in my journey? Well, I would say ROSA! It helped me to structure my coaching sessions by being organized and prepared. By addressing Reality, Objectives, Solutions and (the best of it) Actions. It simply creates a gentle path for you as a coach to navigate the session whether you are coaching a team or a single person.
Agile + ROSA = Gracias
Agile mindset is something that is close to my heart. I found it easy to map ROSA with the iterative approach of the Agile way of working. And my favourite part is that it always includes Actions.
The Action part pushes the team or the individual to strive for managing the challenge they stand in front of, that big thingy! The flow of ROSA is very alike to the Agile flow of delivery. What I mean is that you often start with a big Challenge / Question / Idea but you find it hard to take the next Step. I bet a lot of you have felt this! One gets so overwhelmed that it shadows the path of the next steps. The approach is to tackle this one big thingy and have it broken down by your coachee (team/individual) to shed some light and to find a step forward. And it doesn’t stop here; once the step is taken you will evaluate it, and then identify the next step towards your vision / goal, the big thingy! Simply Inspect and Adapt.
Questions, your BFF (best friend forever)
As a coach you don’t have the answers. You might think you have them, but you really don’t! The answer belongs to the coachee! You as a coach will have the questions, some gentle ones, but hopefully a lot of those challenging ones. This will be a key part of your toolset to coach individuals and teams in reaching their goals. ROSA again helped me to organize my sessions and to challenge myself with those questions I need to ask.
The catalyst coach, growth!
My strive as an Agile Coach has always been to coach teams to get as self-sufficient and autonomous as possible. This allows me as an Agile Coach to focus on other teams and help other parts of the organization to deliver value.