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Beauty and the Beast

A curious question from @bobwillis who asks “On your best and worst days how would you demonstrate yourself to the team”

Thank you Bob, the question intrigues me greatly and I’m going to give it a go but caveat that this is only my view and not sure there is a right or wrong answer.

To start @twenty2collective we believe to be truly agile we have to ensure we have psychological safety and equal voice for all team members (including the coach) to achieve high performance so you should feel comfortable to share where you are at with the team. Any person with good eq will sense where you’re at so putting on a mask and pretending you’re great when really you’re not might actually lead to a detrimental effect and trust issues with your coachees.

Having said this, as a coach we have assumed a role of leadership, servant leadership, but leadership all the same and this is something we should strive to uphold at all times. Putting on a mask won’t help you or the team and when it comes to behaviours one of the worst things we can do is be hypocritical. I’ll never forget watching a scrum master tear apart a team for improper jira usage after telling me he’d had a rough weekend but equally he wasn’t prepared to keep his own jira backyard in order. I’m always reminded of that image on the safety brochure when flying, we have to put the air mask on ourselves before anyone else.

Something to remember whether it’s a good or a bad day we always need to be humble. If we are humble with intent then extremes in days will be less visible to those we coach. I like to believe if you are humble and transparent but maintain a positive spirit, even on the worst days you can still be successful. I remember a time a few years ago after a particularly tough week of family sickness. I was scheduled to facilitate a key meeting for the team. I opened the session with vulnerability “Hey guys, I’m excited to be here and support you though this but I’ll be honest I’ve had a cumulative total of 3 hours sleep in the last 3 days so you may not see my best but I’m always here to help, now we have a problem to solve today how best shall we do that?” It was quite surprising the response I received as if I’d moved up the trust level as the team saw I wasn’t bulletproof. I also saw key roles step up in a way not observed before and a fundamental shift in team behaviours. This lifted the overall energy and it actually went on to be one of my most memorable sessions. Worth considering next time we’re in a similar position.

I’ll finish by saying I am a firm believer that everyone should have at least one coach. I have three, all different styles and experience but able to help me from decisions in business, in fitness and in life. These are the first people I go to on my worst days and time with them gives me the energy I need to then coach others. So who’s your coach?

Hope this helps answer your question Bob and thank you once again!



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