Exploring dynamics of Manager - Agile Coach Relationship

There is often a situation between managers and the coaches where the Managers think the coaches intervene in the delivery, while the coaches argue the managers do 'command and control'. Often, these two parts of system are seen on opposing sides. We at AgileSattva, believe that every component in the system has a role and there is a relationship between all the stakeholders. [updated] The key important stake holders are "Coaches" and "Managers".[/updated] This relationship has important contrbituion and impact towards transforming the teams/systems.

[updated] In our experiences working with Agile Coaches (as part of supervision of their work to resolve their stuckness), we find a pattern in the way they relate to Leadership and Management group of the teams. In bringing our observation to the awareness of coaches, their thinking pattern changes and are able to move towards effective transformations. [/updated]

In this workshop, we would invite the participants to explore the dynamics of this relationship and its impact on the team/ system through activities, reflective exercises and discussions. 

[updated]We use Transactional Analysis (Eric Berne, 1961) as a framework to understand this relationship. We may use Psychodrama (Jacob L Moreno) activities with the group to explore the dynamics. [/updated]

[updated 30.10.14] 

Group Imago is defined by Berne in 1966 as ‘‘a mental image of the dynamic relationships between the people in the group, including the therapist; idiosyncratic for each individual patient". This is used in organizations where the group refers to the teams, therapist could be consultant/manager/coach and individual patient are member of that team. 

The important part of using this model in Agile coaching is to bring out the "unconscious thinking" of how Coaches/Managers see the team and themselves in relation to the team (system). 

The mode of activity could be through drawings/arrangement of their mental image of the team and self on paper or a field (where we could use floor or tables).  More details here may set people be conscious, hence would be happy to share it over the call/mail. 

Psychodrama is a school of group therapy also used for Organizational Development to build cohesive teams, analyze difficult situations, setting up value system in the organization etc. sociometry is the study of social relations between individuals—interpersonal relationships. The activity is 'setting up scene' with a situation (difficult situation) a person (coach/manager) is facing at their work place. The setup could be again using toys/real people representing people from their situation. This is also to explore the way the interaction is happening in that situation. This gives a wholistic picture of the system (unconscious thinking of people in the system). sociometry involves techniques for identifying, organizing, and giving feedback on specific interpersonal preferences an individual has. For example, in a psychodrama sociometry session, we may want to explore the cold war between team members that has been unseen or ignored from long time.  [reference in wikipedia]

Like I mentioned, both the activities are tools to bring out the unconscious thinking to the conscious, so the activity evolves as we are facilitating. 

[/updated 30.10.14]



Outline/Structure of the Workshop

We are evolving this session, We feel this structure is good to begin formulating the session.
1. The session will begin with activity
    [divide the groups in two parts, agile coaches/scrum masters and Managers to bring out their thinking about each other roles.] 
2. De-brief
3. Activity
    [We are planning on two options, one on using Imago model with smaller groups (if audience is big), the other option is using Psychodrama sociometr - This is to explore how they see themselves in relationship to other (them and other is coach, manager)]
4. Discussion.
5. De-brief.
   [In getting the awareness from the activity, relate it to systemic approach to agile transformation (change) and re-define the relationship]
6. Closure.
Note: The slides arent ready yet. Hence provided the link of the slides that we presented at last year conference.
Note: The activities need more thinking around systemic approach, so I am mentioning all the options we are thinking and would be using based on the number of people attend. Such activities depend on the number of participants, type of participants. So we are keeping our options so that we cater to smaller (less than 15) to medium (15-30) to larger (30+ particpants). 
Sharing more on the exact mode of activities will spoil the fun for the participants, which is not the major concern for us, still a thought! 
The session will be co-facilitated by Gunjan Zutshi

Learning Outcome

Learning Outcome:
1. The participants will be able to understand and reflect on the dynamics of the relationship between Manager and Agile Coaches.
2. Roles and Responsibilities of Managers, Coaches.

Target Audience

Managers, coaches, delivery team, scrum masters

schedule Submitted 5 years ago

Public Feedback

comment Suggest improvements to the Speaker
  • Naresh Jain
    By Naresh Jain  ~  4 years ago
    reply Reply

    Deepak, the proposal is too abstract. I'm finding it hard to visualise what the workshop will look like. Can you please share some activities that would be done as part of the workshop?

    • Deepak Dhananjaya
      By Deepak Dhananjaya  ~  3 years ago
      reply Reply

      Thanks for your feedback, I resonate with your thoughts! I see the challenge for you to visualize as the details werent elaborate. I have updated the proposal with more details. Since we do not know the exact number of people who may participate, there is a challenge for us to finalize on the exact activities. I also realize the need for you to know more details in order to review, so I have provided our approach and thoughts about our options we have. We shall keep updating the proposal as and more we formalize the activities and mode of workshop. Does the updated propsal provide you enough info to review? Please let us know! 

      • Naresh Jain
        By Naresh Jain  ~  4 years ago
        reply Reply

        Thanks Deepak. I see that you plan to use Imago model or Psychodrama sociometr in the activity section. Can you elaborate on this?

        • Deepak Dhananjaya
          By Deepak Dhananjaya  ~  3 years ago
          reply Reply

          I have given information on both Imago and Psychodrama sociometry. I have not provided the specificity of Agile coaches and managers in the activity as it would burst the suspence and essence which may dilute the actual process. So will be happy to share my experience using this wrt Agile coaches and managers over call or can write separately as Private Message. Please suggest.