Hey Folks… I’ve never posted anything like this before, but I wanted to let you guys know we are growing and looking for a few top-notch coaches to hire over the next several months. If you are interested, or know anyone that is, please give us a shout.
That said, let me give you an idea of what we are looking for in our ideal agile coach.
1. Our coaches come from a variety of backgrounds so there isn’t really one profile that fits for us. We have folks that have been senior executives in large companies as well as executives in startups. We have people that have started and run their own businesses. We have people that come from a more traditional training and coaching background and we have people with a more traditional management consulting background. The people that tend to work out best for us bring a passion for agile, pragmatism about what agile looks like during a transformation, and a sincere passion for helping people and organizations get better at what they do.
2. As you might expect, you need to be an expert in agile. You should be steeped in the literature and extremely knowledgeable about the entire family of methods. You should be conversant in Scrum and XP as well as Kanban and SAFe. You should know about Crystal, DSDM, FDD, and Lean and where they fit into the body of knowledge. You should have a background applying a wide variety of agile methods in complex environments. You should have the conviction to stand firm on principles but a willingness blend and bend approaches as necessary to help our clients be successful.
3. We need you to be confident and self-assured yet humble with a willingness to learn. While we are not a training company, it would help if you were a gifted trainer full of anecdotes and stories about agile teams you’ve worked with and transformations you’ve lead. You need to be able to hold a room for several days and connect with all levels of an organization. You should be equally comfortable working with a room full of executives as you are with a room full of developers. You’ll often need the ability to speak developer to the business people and business to the developer people. A broad, inclusive perspective is essential.
4.You’ll need to have a strong degree of emotional and social intelligence and have the ability to read a room and adapt your approach to meet the unique needs of the people you are working with. You should have excellent problem solving skills and the cognitive resources to develop customized solutions on the fly, brainstorming ideas with senior leaders in unfamiliar and unique problem domains. You need to be able to work and collaborate with an expert team of coaches, every one of them with strong opinions and unique points of view, and craft solutions that work in the best interests of our clients.
While we strive to find local work for our coaches, if you are not in Atlanta, Washington DC, Orlando, Denver, New York, New Jersey, Los Angeles or San Francisco… you should expect to travel nearly 100%. Local work isn’t impossible to find in other areas, I just wouldn’t count on it. These are the areas where we currently have the most traction or an established client base. That said, even if you are working in your home town, some travel is pretty much inevitable.
You should know that a big part of what we do is probably less coaching and more management consulting. If you are familiar with our approach, you’ll know that we take a pretty hard stance that we have to define a structure, governance, and metrics model as precursor to leading a transformation. We are pretty prescriptive with many organizations, especially early in the process, about how we are going to implement agile. In the complex organizations where we work, playing soft will get us fired. We walk in with a point of view and a plan and a strategy for helping get the transformation started.
In return, we offer a pretty unique environment to work and a very interesting compensation plan.
We are totally distributed but operate in a series of small independent teams we call tribes. Each tribe has all the roles necessary to deliver an account. While you might be flying solo on any particular engagement, you have the support of a complete cross-functional team to share the load. Within the LeadingAgile transformation framework, your tribe has a ton of autonomy to do anything necessary to deliver for the client… you can even ditch the framework if you have to. If we find our approach stops working for us or our clients, we’ll change it. All policy and process is owned by the team we make changes using an open source/committer model.
We are committed to full transparency when it comes to salary, margin, and operating costs, and such within our organization.
We are in the process of moving all our coaches to the same base salary. Each coach has the opportunity to earn an extra 20% of their salary if the company meets certain delivery targets and its a whole team incentive. We are working on a model that can create significant upside for our coaches for certain kinds of sales and marketing activities and we are building a stock option and stock purchase program so everyone has a stake. On occasion we’ve been able to craft unique compensation plans to accommodate special situations where a coach has an established pipeline and/or a proven track record of business development success.
We are definitely a work-in-process and quite often operating way above our WIP limits. If you’re interested in driving meaningful change in large complex organizations, and you want to work for a unique, fast-paced, and innovative early stage growth company… hit us up on the Contact Us page, we’d love to talk. Please make sure to have a resume handy as well as links to anything you’ve posted recently that will give us an idea of what you’re passionate about and how you think.