Read the original post on InfoQ.
- There is a frequently seen confusion with respect to the definition of agile coaching: coaching focus (e.g. enterprise vs. team) is confused with coaching alignment (centralized vs. decentralized) within an organization
- Centralized coaching departments run the risk of turning into a single-specialty organizational silos that are locally optimized for their own expansion and personal success; they are also removed from real action. The reasoning behind: standardization – has its weaknesses.
- Centralized coaching is often limited to being “responsible for introducing KPIs, documentation of script-style-one-size-fits-all best practices and cookie-cutting approaches”. This leads to system gaming by other departments and organizational silos that must “meet numbers goals”
- Centralized Agile coaching makes sense only when it takes place within an organization that is small enough to be effectively managed front-to-back (including its all organizational layers) and is genuinely supportive of its own coaches, by providing them with “organizational immunity” and operational safety – to enable them perform their challenging duties
- The main advantage of decentralized coaching approach is that coaches are close to real action: deeply engaged with products/services, and are intimately engaged with senior leadership. Decentralized coaching is deep & narrow (as opposed to being broad and shallow) and takes time to cause meaningful and sustainable organizational changes.
2 thoughts on “Centralized vs. Decentralized Coaching”
Gene, great article and great cartoon! I wrote a similar article about centralizing agile expertise for Tom Cagley’s website and posted a comparison on my own blog at: https://vitalitychicago.com/blog/should-you-centralize-your-agile-coaching/